Being a Good Father Means Being a Good Model
Today’s post is from our newest NFL Spokesman, Michael Robinson. He had an eight year NFL career, four with the San Francisco 49ers and four with the Seattle Seahawks, where he played and won a Super Bowl. More than anything Michael Robinson is a committed husband and father of four. All Pro Dad is proud to have him as a Spokesman.
In several weeks, NFL players will report to their prospective teams for training camp. After a lifetime playing football and eight years in the NFL, I still get excited around this time of year. Since retiring from the NFL, my passion has been working with kids. I am always amazed and humbled by the opportunity being a former NFL player has in influencing their lives. They look at us with wide eyes and a sense of awe. It reminds me of when I was their age. Back then, my favorite players were Randall Cunningham and Barry Sanders. I would watch them on TV and study how they moved. Then I would go outside with my football and mimic those moves, wanting to be like them.
While I am passionate about working with kids, I am most passionate about my own. I have four and desire to instill in them the values that have made me who I am. We consistently talk about it, but nothing sinks in like modeling it well. They will copy what we do more than what we say. Being a good father comes down to showing our kids how to live, love, think, and behave. [Tweet This] With that said, here are three things I am focusing on modeling to my kids right now.
I want to focus on God’s ways, not my own. Prayer is the biggest way to keep my heart and mind in the right place. Every night I pray with my kids so they can see me do it. Even my two-year-old will watch me, fold her hands, close her eyes, and say a prayer. It’s one of my favorite parts of the day. They get to hear the things on my heart and I get to hear theirs.
Think for Yourself
One of the things I consistently say to my children is “use your own brain”. Do not be swayed by the crowd. Think deeply about what is right and do it. When you play in the NFL, there are a lot of external forces pushing you in various directions. It is an easy place to find trouble. Unfortunately, you see that happen in the media all the time. Keeping a sharp mind to what is right is important in maintaining integrity especially when the gravity from the crowd is so strong.
Keeping Your Word
If you say you are going to do something, do it. It is a simple concept, but practicing it takes commitment. When it comes to my kids, the easiest way I can get off track is telling them we are going to spend time together and then getting distracted with other things. That’s why when I arrive home, I tell myself, “Here I am.” The emphasis is on the word here meaning nowhere else and that includes my mind. If I tell my kids I will play with them in 2 minutes and I’m not playing with them at minute 2:01, then I have not kept my word. If I don’t keep my word, they won’t keep theirs.
What are the top things you are modeling to your kids?