I'm in the process of drafting a book, or in some ways an operating manual of how I intend to be the best parent possible. Note the word 'intent'....
I'm writing it for a specific audience - A dad who's kids are having an easier upbringing that what he experienced. Someone who knows what it's like to have things tough and didn't grow up in our amazing JoCo bubble. There is no place in the world (literally) I'd rather raise my kids however the ease of upbringing will present it's own challenges that we cannot yet comprehend. My hope with this book is I can outline some standards to help make “Tough Kids in an Easy World.”
The current working title is “Safe Suffering - Raising Tough Kids in an Easy World”. I'm sure I'll fall short in many regards (and I lack adequate experience to be an expert) but as the saying from Alice in Wonderland goes: “If you don't know where you're going, all roads will get you there.”. I'm trusting that a little intention will at least put me on a course, maybe not the perfect one, but a course none-the-less.
In most other things I've done where I really want to achieve a desired goal (in this case - be a dad I'd be proud of), I like taking others along for the ride. Honestly, it's self serving in three ways:
1) I have the ultimate accountability as I have to walk to walk if I'm going to talk the talk 2) I sincerely enjoy helping others and 3) I want my kids to grow up in a community with really nice, active, fun, healthy and glass 1/2 full type people. We're off to one heck of a start and I'm grateful beyond believe for what their 'normal' will be growing up.
In working on the draft over the last month I've come to realize that the work we do in the gym is far more important than simply helping someone get stronger, lose 10 lbs, or help someone touch their toes. It can change the course of a family and quite honestly, a generation that follows.
Being a parent should be one of the most rewarding things in the world. For a reason that is perhaps different from what you're thinking.
I hear stories everyday - in fact here is a text I received this morning “Thanks Jon for the nice message! Made my morning :). I love starting my day at 2020, sets a great positive tone for the rest of the day!” If I had a nickel for each message like that I've have many many dollars at this point. The idea however is broader than that. When you impact a parent - help them start their day, they come home with more energy, a better attitude and they instill that on their kids. Their kids in turn treat their friends and teachers a little better... Passing on the goodness.
So when I stop and think about our role and the impact we can have - I take it incredibly seriously as I'm now seeing first hand the direct impact a positive parent can have on the family environment. What we're up to is deeper than fitness and it's amazing. It's generational. It's community wide. And it starts with one person at a time. I whole heartedly believe that we can get to a critical mass of people who feel good, who want to be nice to others, that it will become the norm. Regardless if it's possible or not, take a moment to visualize what kind of world that that would be like to live in....
Thanks for helping me make it happen!!
To get there is pretty simple - do your part. Work your little butt off, set a great example for your kids (or someone else's kids), and build the people up around you one positive gesture at a time.
The goal may have been to look better naked when you walked in the door, but when you walk out, what can you do to make the world a better place?
Have an amazing day!