Dad life lessons

6 Lessons My Dad Taught Me

A dad is more than just a parent—he is a teacher, a friend, and a teammate.


My dad is one of my best friends and greatest role models in life. When I was younger, we used to watch Saturday college football together almost every week. This chunk of time also gave me quality time to spend with one of my favorite people. As I grew up, I realized my dad was more than just my sports-obsessed best friend, he was my biggest inspiration and one of the most influential teachers in my life. He taught me six of the most important lessons I will ever learn.

1. Smile always 


I have always been a smiley person. It is probably one of the most noticeable things about my personality. Smiling always made me feel better no matter the situation I was in. A constant reminder my dad would give me is that most things in life can be solved with a simple smile. It's like that saying "kill them with kindness," a smile works the same way. People are more willing to trust you and to help you if you smile. Plus, who doesn't love being happy and smiley most of the time?

2. Saturdays are for college football 


I have always been an avid sports fan—from hockey to football to basketball I like to watch it all. Growing up, my dad would sit on the couch with me almost every Saturday and we would watch the Fighting Illini football game. I used to look forward to this part of the weekend because it was back when they were good and we had something to cheer for. Nowadays, I look forward to my dad coming down to campus and getting to cheer along with him in the bleachers.

Even though the wins are few and far between, I always love the tradition of getting to sing "Hail to the Orange" with my dad. Sports is one of our major shared interests and getting to continue our tradition of Saturday football is amazing. But even if my dad is not on campus I still watch college football on Saturdays, whether its the Illini, the Naval Academy, or Notre Dame, there is always a football game that needs to be watched.

3. Never yell 


I can not remember a time in my life where my dad has ever yelled at my brother or I. There have been arguments and situations where he has been genuinely frustrated but never once has he raised his voice at us. This for me is such an important thing. Anything worth saying should not be yelled. Once the yelling starts, people stop paying attention to what you are saying. Yelling at someone does not fix a problem, often times it can lead to more issues. The only time yelling is called for is during those Saturday football games.

4. Speak up for yourself 


My dad has always been a strong proponent of speaking up for oneself. It builds self-confidence and self-esteem and it improves people skills. Learning to speak up for myself was not an easy task. If it wasn't for my dad, I probably would be a lot less willing to speak out against things that I do not always agree with. If you have a different opinion than someone, speak up let them know. Silence is often viewed as a sign of agreement. Make your opinion known, but always be respectful when doing it. Having that confidence in yourself makes it a lot easier to be more open and outgoing overall as a person.

5. Be your own #1 fan 


Having supporters is amazing and truly creates a more empowering and motivational environment, but the best supporter is always yourself. No one can push you to work more or give more effort than you can. Believing in yourself, supporting yourself, and always being your own cheerleader is so important. It is a great feeling to know others believe in but if you don't believe in yourself, what is the point? If we don't believe in ourselves, why should others? So much of what my dad taught me has to do with self-confidence and self-belief. Although it's not always easy to believe in ourselves, it is something we have to do.

6. Live without fear 


This was definitely a lesson I needed in life, but it was not a lesson I necessarily knew my dad was teaching. Honestly, I don't even know if he was trying to teach me or if I just observed it through behavior. There have been points in my life where I have watched my dad do many amazing things. But the most amazing is the confidence that he puts out especially when he is giving presentations. or doing some sort of public speaking. When we restrict ourselves and refrain from doing things that scare us, we aren't growing as people. The best way to grow is to live without fear. Do the things that scare us and take risks—this can lead to some unexpected and exciting things.

Sometimes I wish my dad had taught me how to change a tire, but these lessons are probably more applicable on how to live life to the fullest.

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.

Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.

7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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6 Lessons My Father Gave Me To Help Me Become A Better Man

Life lessons given to me from a dad who I did not appreciate enough.


My father grew up in the inner city of Chicago. The Austin Neighborhood. Now if you happen to not be as knowledgeable of Chicago like my father is, the Austin Neighborhood is/was one of the worst neighborhoods in Chicago in terms of violence, and drugs, and other things. He was the first person in his family to go to college and he ended up going to graduate school to become a doctor. These life lessons below are some of the reasons why I am who I am today, and I am very grateful that he has taught me or showed me these things.

1. Always value education 

Given that my father was the first in his family to go to college, this one was sort of a given. He told me to always put education first, as that will help you achieve your dreams. He taught me that it was okay to "love school" when it was socially unacceptable to say those two words together in elementary school. He taught me the value of staying up late at night and studying and working hard to become the best version of yourself.

2. Always respect others

Always respect others, but don't be afraid to stand up for what you believe in. This one to me was self-explanatory. Always respect people no matter their race, religion, or political orientation, in the end, it does not matter because people are not defined by that one characteristic. They are defined by who they are on the inside, and that takes actually getting to know someone as opposed to just listening to 'hearsay'. He said to do these things, but stand up for what you believe in. "People are never going to agree on everything or believe the same way as you are" he so commonly has said; but, "if you show that you will respect others for who they are, in turn, you will build respect and credibility when you stand up and voice what you believe in". No matter what circumstance you find yourself in, I have made this a life goal and motto.

3. Respect life and live it to the fullest

He said this in both religious and personal way. In a personal way, he wanted me to know that it was okay to have fun and enjoy your life, as long as you respect it and live it to the fullest doing what you love. In a religious sense, he taught me the importance of childhood and life in a religious sense when he told me I was adopted. He said to me, "GOD put you in my family, and I am so proud that he did. Make sure that you are ready when you want to create life and start a family because the human life that you create with another woman is its own individual being created by GOD and deserves only the best."

4. Always remain energetic

Always remain energetic and positive no matter what circumstance is occurring. You can be going through a battle with cancer, or you can be finding true love. Life is always going to have its ups and its downs, and you cannot let that determine how you act or appear before other people. He always told me to "put a smile on my face and appreciate the things that I have, for there are others who wish they could have what you have," and I never truly realized how real this was. He taught me to always stay positive because that positivity and that energy can cause a smile to spread someone else's life. I have worked to always be extremely energetic and positive as this helps to make time go by faster, and it helps you appreciate the way things are and recognize the true power of what we as Americans and what I as a college student have been given.

5. Value hard work 

Value hard work and only give 100% your best effort. This one is self-explanatory. My father did not have any financial platform to jump off of, or an older sibling to lend his or her books to him. He had to work hard and sacrifice in order to become who he is today. He told me that if you keep working at something, and you keep trying and trying and giving it your all eventually whatever you are working towards will go your way; and, that one victory is all the spark you need to shoot off the ground. As Rachel Platten puts it in her hit song, "Fight Song," "I might only have one match, but I can make an explosion." Hard work - to me and my father - is that match, and the explosion is our success.

6. Don't quit

If you see something you want, run after it and don't stop until you have received the 'fruits of your labor'. This one to me I have applied in mainly education and knowledge. If I want to know about a certain thing, I will put my phone down and read about it - yes even sometimes with a physical book from the library. If I want to get something that I cannot afford, I will pull together as much money as possible and work for whatever else I need and then be happy to see that my hard work ended up helping me get what I wanted.

I am very blessed that GOD put me into this family when I was born. I am thankful that my birth mother - wherever and whomever she may be - decided to give me up for adoption so that I can grow up with the wonderful man that my father truly is.

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