Man Of Few Words

I think a lot of emphasis is placed on the importance of the practical roles of a father, and rightly so. A father is expected to protect, to guide, to provide and to renovate. I guess that is why there is a massive spike in the rate of DIY accidents among fathers than men that have no children. By the way I just made up that statistic, did you believe that statement? It makes sense though.

One aspect that is undervalued is that of the words the father speaks. Encouragement, affirmation, direction, discipline and observations are essential to unlocking the full potential of one’s child and to make the relationship as wholesome as possible. I think about the few times my father’s dished out verbal discipline and how those moments have stuck more than any other. I find it hard to do the things he admonished me for simply because of our relationship and his role in my life. As a result I sometimes wonder if I would be drastically different had I been admonished more. Would I have less of what I view as character and organisational flaws?

Self-esteem and self-confidence can be massively boosted by having a father who affirms you. You are a genius, you are beautiful. If you hear such rousing statements from someone who matters so much to you, you won’t have that void being filled by another character in your life. You’ll find you’re less prone to people pleasing and you don’t need to impress others to earn their respect. You would have developed self-respect by knowing you are valued from a young age.

Lastly regarding direction. While it is important for a father to give room for a child to grow in their talents it is also essential to help point out the skills and talents the father views, as unbiased as possible. Mostly those that are phenomenally talented at something don’t see how good they are until someone tells them. I believe it is the role of the father to observe what his children’s talents are and prescribe possible pathways for them to make the most impact on this earth. Furthermore we forget how difficult and unreasonable it is for a teenager still in the process of discovering oneself to make vital decisions that can potentially set the direction for the rest of their lives in stone. During this crucial period guidance from a father, who presumably has accrued wisdom through wide reading, and experiences (partaken of and received through sharing), will be able to give the child as many (right) options and a good way of helping them choose which one.

Perhaps it’s time for Dads to stop being the silent brooding voice but to speak out more often and to do so positively.

Self-Esteem Building Hacks

There are two tools that I have found to be incredibly effective when it comes to building self-esteem: I AM… and Mack On The Mirror.

I AM…

I AM

This is practically positive affirmations but in every area of life, where we attempt to weed out the phrases “I cannot” and “I am not” because they often lead to a negative answer that limits our vision and our capabilities. Instead we focus on saying “I AM…”

Fill in the missing space with what you believe you are and more importantly what you are working towards!

e.g. I AM Strong. I AM Intelligent. I AM Wise. I AM Confident. I AM Attractive. I AM Focussed…

Mack On The Mirror

My personal favourite. Mack is a slang term I and others used in high school and it means to court. Perhaps we don’t have anyone to speak positively in our lives or to affirm us. Worry not – all we need is a mirror and a mouth. This is effective in that as you use the I AM tool you also see an image speaking the same words back to you. It’s no longer just hearing the words but a visual representation of someone saying those same words back to you invokes a sense of agreement and support, making each of your statements more believable than the last time. The more you do it, the more you believe it. Look at this baby. I don’t know about you but I think she/he can conquer the world.

 

Mack On The Mirror

Lying Is Good For You

Lying is good for you! Yup you heard that right. So what does that even mean? I’m not telling you to practise perjury if you’re a lawyer or to hide evidence if you’re a cop. I’m not advising you to commit fraud or not pay taxes. I am saying you have got to lie, every single day of your life. That’s going to set you free from mental prisons, transforming you from the chicken you’ve been told you are to the eagle you were always meant to be.

Let me elaborate on what I mean. The world has given us a series of truths that have already seeped into the recesses of our minds and in most cases have shaped our view of self. You may have been branded as unintelligent, unwise, ugly, terrible at communicating and relegated to a place or position you think (or formerly thought) you don’t belong to. Allow these words to build up and be the only thing you listen to then you’ll believe them to be truth. Do you know why the words hurt you so? It’s because you’ve believed them to be the truth. If you know you are intelligent even your professor can’t make you think otherwise. If you know you are a success you won’t entertain being told you are a disappointment. If you know you are beautiful even Ms. Universe can’t put you down. But how do you know something when it isn’t ‘the truth’ based on what you hear? Simple. You lie… everyday. Tell a lie enough times – you’ll eventually believe it.

Unfortunately your way of thinking is an ensemble of the information you receive. You are bound to hear negative things daily – social media is the bullhorn of negativity. I know not everyone can extricate themselves from it like I’ve done. But you need to come up with a way to hear the ‘lie’ you want more than you hear ‘the truth’ of the world. Enter affirmations and confessions.

Daily speak the things you want. ‘Lie’ and affirm yourself with the traits you desire that you are told you don’t have. Say these things often enough to overshadow ‘the truth’ of this world.

If you can’t switch off or drown out the outside noise, pump up the volume of what you say to yourself within.

If you don’t think you can do that, find a good friend of yours to do it on your behalf. If you can’t even ask them to do that for you maybe check your friendships. I’ll talk about how to pinpoint the right friends on Friday in ‘We Are Not In This Together’.

Below are some confessions you can try out that may change your life:

I am intelligent, wise, focussed, driven, patient, creative, organised and a solution provider – I am mentally strong.

I am confident, outspoken, friendly, honest, great at listening and open-minded – I am a great communicator.

I am beautiful, handsome, kind, healthy, composed, courageous, humble, loving and loved – I am enough.

I am strong, enthusiastic, charismatic, patient, trustworthy, a role model, authentic, a visionary – I am a leader.

Add whatever you need to that list and ‘lie’ till that’s all you know!

I challenge you to test the contents of this post to see if they work or not.

See you tomorrow for part 2 of Lying Is Good For You:  Building Habits.