Dads. The traditional way of modeling, teaching, and mentoring your children may not be as effective as they were in prior generations. Generally, parents were respected and the trusted authority for a variety of different information.
Uh oh. Now my kids use Google and YouTube as their go-to source of information and leadership. And, most advice that comes out of my mouth is fact-checked by internet sources. So, how does a father best connect with their children in this digital age?
Dance in Your Genre.
Kids will respect and trust you more if you admit that you don’t know something. If you try to be the source of good information and leadership advice on too many subjects you may lose credibility. This doesn’t relinquish your responsibility in areas in which you are weak. It means you need to lead where your strengths are, fill in the gaps by intentionally studying areas in which you are weaker and get some help along the way. Here’s a great resource to more than fill in the gaps on father leadership. Download free ebook.
Be an Authentic Model.
Admit it when you are wrong. It’s OK to reveal some of our weaknesses. But, this doesn’t mean they need to know about your every private thought. You still need to model good behavior. They are watching and listening to what you do and say. Most kids are intuitive and will quickly pick up on inconsistencies in our beliefs and behaviors. What kind of model was your father? If you didn’t have a positive role model, who can you model now? We’re not looking for perfection, just someone who models good parenting.
Connect Where They Are.
Take an interest in their interests. Time equals love. Is there an activity that you both enjoy where you can connect on a regular basis?