What is it about your dad’s advice that gives it staying power throughout your life? Even if Dad got on your nerves with his caution and counsel while you were growing up, you’ve probably since learned that he knew what he was talking about all along.
Whether Dad consoled you after a childhood sweetheart broke your heart or taught you by example how to treat others, “dad advice” has a way of making more sense as you get older, advance in your career or start your own family.
Did your dad offer life tips while sweating under the hood of a car, manning the barbecue grill or driving you to soccer games on weekends? Whatever image comes to mind when you think of your dad, his best advice likely guides your choices today.
“Enjoy the Little Moments in Life”
Mike Collins’ dad, Herb, was a hard-working technician for the local telephone company in Jersey City, New Jersey. When Mike was in high school, Herb would scramble to drive Mike to school each morning before heading to work. One morning, Mike offered to take public transport to school instead.
“Are you nuts?” Herb asked his son. “That ten-minute ride with you is the best part of my day.” Mike didn’t think much of his dad’s comment until years later when Mike became a father himself.
“I look back at that morning and realize he was teaching me a valuable lesson about enjoying the little moments in life,” says Mike, who now chauffeurs his own children to school and soccer practices. “That short drive gives me a chance to connect with my kids one-on-one.”
Mike’s dad passed away years ago, but his example still directs Mike’s life today. “I wish I could say to him, ‘Hey Dad, I totally get it,'” says Mike, who operates a personal finance website based in Matawan, New Jersey. “Now that I’m a dad, I totally cherish those little moments with my kids.”
“Don’t Settle for the Bare Minimum”
When Oscar Verduga was nine years old, his dad, Wilson, moved the family from Santo Domingo, Ecuador, to Toronto, Ontario, to offer Oscar and his siblings a better future.
Watching his family start over from scratch in Canada taught Oscar the value of hard work and perseverance. “My dad always told me, ‘No matter what you do, make sure you’re the best in that field. Don’t settle for just the bare minimum,'” says Oscar.
“Every time I start to get comfortable with my business, I remember his words and start looking for ways to continue to improve and seek discomfort,” says Oscar, who now owns a home inspection company in Barrie, Ontario. “It’s in discomfort that we learn and grow.”
“Have a Plan and Stick to It”
Vid Lamonté Buggs Jr.’s dad became the man of the home early, taking a paper route at a young age to contribute to the household. Vid Sr. worked hard, earning an engineering degree and later putting three kids through college.
“My dad said that when you have a plan and see it through daily, you will succeed,” says Vid, a motivational speaker in Tampa, Florida. “Things may not always go how you would like, but if you keep a plan, more times than not, you will accomplish your goal.”
Vid took his dad’s best advice in college, perfecting his basketball game by shooting 500 shots a day in the gym. “When I reached that goal, I upped the number,” says Vid, who went on to play professional and semi-professional basketball for many years.
“My dad always told me, ‘As long as you do your best, you will have no regrets,'” says Vid. “Keep working hard and doing your best, and it will pay off eventually.'”
“Show Respect to Everyone”
Don Allison’s dad, Charlie, taught him by example to treat everyone with respect. Whether bantering with restaurant servers, chatting up the gas station attendant or negotiating contracts with union workers as an executive with his company, Charlie listened to each person with respect.
“Negotiating a contract with the workers’ union can be a contentious process,” says Don. “Yet even when negotiations were over, leaders of the union would greet Dad warmly and invite our family to cookouts, fishing trips and other gatherings. My dad always had the respect of the rank-and-file of the factory.”
Following his dad’s example also led Don to benefit from the goodwill of those he treated respectfully. The waitress he always tipped generously moved on to manage a car dealership, going out of her way to help Don resolve a difficult warranty issue. The pharmacy worker Don cheerfully acknowledged then helped locate hand sanitizer for Charlie, who has a compromised immune system, when the commodity was scarce.
“No matter the person’s station in life, Dad shows respect in dealing with every individual,” says Don, who owns a publishing company in Bryan, Ohio. “Dad always tries to make the world a little better for the people around him, and I try to follow that.”
“Put Your Children and Family First”
When Andrew Selepak was two years old, his dad, Ron, left a banking job with perks such as embassy parties in Washington, D.C., to take a federal government job, moving to the suburbs for better schools and opportunities for Andrew and the family.
“Living in the suburbs, my dad had a longer commute, leaving before the sun was up and often coming home after dark,” says Andrew. Even with the lengthy commute, Ron made time to coach Andrew’s little league baseball and basketball teams. “I saw that a father’s job is to be involved and take an active role in his child’s life,” says Andrew, a professor at the University of Florida in Gainesville who hopes to have kids of his own someday.
“He showed me that when you bring a child into the world, that child becomes your main priority. I have a close relationship with Dad now simply because he was there for me then and still is today.”
Whether you still get words of wisdom straight from your dad or they live in your memories, having a good dad goes a long way towards helping your journey through life.
Has Dad’s wisdom, best advice or outlook shaped your life in a positive way? Tell us about the best advice you took to heart in the comments.
Should ,I be honest ? I didn’t do well with my son. At present , I’m experiencing the trials of my mistakes . What I really enjoyed about the article was the comments that were made about remembering the important things Dads said to there sons who’s father’s passed on . Also cherishing those special times. It’s not over yet.
As a father, grandfather and great grandfather I thought that was a wonderful message to share with other. I always believed that you shouldn’t allow your personal emotions dictate and control your reasoning of treating others like you would like to be done to you.
A good name with credibility is worth its weight in gold and treat others with respect.
TALK LESS- LISTEN MORE
My dad taught me that if you have a service job, then be sure you provide service. For instance, if your office is closed due to a holiday don’t just say that. Provide your regular office hours and the phone number to call so people can get in touch to fix their policy!
My Dad always had the same advice. He lived to 93 years old and would say to me…
“Eat good food. Get a good night sleep. And believe in God!.
Sounds pretty simple, yet I can tell you that not only myself but many people I know or have know, this “pretty simple” advice seemed not to enter their world.
My advice. Give them a try!
My dad showed me hard work, good ethics and living on purpose will cause you to succeed in life. Putting these priorities in order was obvious in our family too. Relationship with God first, Spouse second, Children thirds, career goals and helping out in church and other community events. Now that I am a senior I go throughout the US ministering through Mission Teens which help people can free of life addicting problems. I teach at these center helping setting them free of life choices that will not prosper them. I believe my father taught me these ethics.
My Dad told me when I was first starting my own business to make sure I take the time to enjoy myself along the way. If you are unsuccessful and the business fails you will not have to say that you wasted that time because you didn’t waste the time if you enjoyed yourself along the way. As it happened, I was a success and am still enjoying the ability to make a living at the age of 79. And I look back at how many vacations I took from 1975 until now. During those vacations I learned to reevaluate my business activities and make changes that increased my success.
Listen well and you will learn when to speak and when not to.
TWO BIRDS, TWO WORDS
The best advice I ever received
was from my father. He gave it to each of us kids more than once because it’s not as easy as it sounds. Try it sometime. when youi trouble, or did over you made a mustake
‘lost, or in trouble. nd don’t know what to do. Or lost.
My Dad worked for his Dad at the family business which sold lime, cement and bricks to contractors. The business opened in 1895. Dad grew up learning how to work with all kinds of people. He started as a kid at the bottom, shoveling sand. He worked his way up to being a salesman. Dad learned to treat all customers with kindness and respect. He also had a great sense of humor. When I was 14 I asked for a job in the office, answering the phones during my summer breaks from school. Dad taught me how to answer the phone correctly, using good manners and with a cheerful tone. One morning I was tired from staying up too late. I was grouchy. Dad overheard me answering a phone call with a yawn and a crabby tone. Dad took me aside and gave me some important advice that helped me throughout my life: He said, “It is your job to greet the public and you are representing all of us who work here. The customer is the most important person in the life of this business. You will be happy, cheerful and polite on every phone call even if you are tired or bored. Never yawn during a call and always make the customer feel that you are happy they called! My career was in healthcare and I never forgot my Dad’s words. Dad was a gentleman and he taught me how to be kind. On work days when I was tired and didn’t think I could take care of one more sick person, I remembered Dad’s words. Be kind, cheerful and make that person feel that they are the most important person I know.
My dear Dad’s advice:
1. “tell me who you hang out with and I’ll tell you who you are” led me to choose my friends very carefully.
2. “never steal things and you’ll never have to be looking over your shoulder”
3. “with a good education you’ll always stand tall even when those around you have more height than you.”
4. “always have a positive attitude even when things are not going your way”
5. “good things happen to good people”
My Dad has passed on but I have always lived with these 5 pieces of advice from him. Best Dad ever!
My dad cautioned me not to “feel sorry for my children, because the world will not be sorry for them”. He also said, “if you raise your children with a strong foundation, they may stray – but the will always return to what you taught them”. He was right! My dad was not a perfect man – he was HUMAN. He worked hard all his life and by example gave his 6 children a strong work ethic.
Maintain your investments (house, cars, motorcycles, bikes). It can become a source of pride and you will save money in the long run.
My dad told me that if I keep my mouth shut and my bowels open I would avoid a lot of problems in this world.
best advice is ignore Dad’s advice, ( wear a suit get a degree/job mortgage) be yourself
invest in yourself (and real estate)Chart your own path but don’t be stupid.
I lived in deep south (AL) during integration in 60’s and 70’s. Due to school district changes, I played on one of the first integrated high school Basketball teams. We used to “car pool” to many games and my dad was the only father that had black players riding in our car. 2 things: he always made me ride in the back seat so one of them could sit in front, with him. It was never discussed, but the lesson was was very clear…we are all just “players”. This lesson in being inclusive was never forgotten and affected my beliefs and thinking in business (hiring, promoting people) for my entire career. He showed me the way and today, after he’s gone, I understand just how important it was. He was a true leader. And I watched and learned.
so true what is written
MY dad while teaching me to drive advised – always assume that the other driver is an idiot. If he is not you win and if he is you are ready>
My Dad taught me the value of being a hard worker. At times he held three jobs. This was a long time ago.
Why Worry? It Will Probably Never Happen
My dad taught me that any job worth doing is worth doing right.
1. “Can’t “ never did nothing
2. Start with the hard stuff, then enjoy the easy stuff.
3. You can argue as much as you want, just make sure that you call her mom, no other is acceptable.
My father gave me a lot of good advice during his lifetime, but the best influence he had was the example he set for me as a minister for 60 years of his 87 year lifespan for which he received very little pay, and no benefits.
Over 70 years ago my father said he’s lived by his high school motto: FIND A WAY OR MAKE ONE , he said it served him well…..and I’ve used it all my life with gratitude!!!
From my mother-in-law. “It’s a poor frog that doesn’t praise it’s own pond.” Florence was a mother and father to my wife her two sisters and two brothers, a hard life but she made it work.
I was 13 and visiting my dad one summer at Lake Tahoe. We were outside and he said, “tell me what you hear.” I replied that I didn’t hear anything and he said “listen.” It was at that moment I heard I wind blowing threw the pine trees. And ever since them in have been listening to my surroundings. There is an entire world of sounds going on out there. Thanks Dad.
He taught me always be willing to help other’s and never ask for anything in return.
My dad’s advice: “Always do the best you can do. It doesn’t have to be perfect.”
My Dad was a man of few words. He showed that he cared by always putting us first.
He was a WWII veteran, an ambulance driver, moving wounded (and dead) soldiers from the front line back to the MASH unit. I can’t imagine the horrors he saw, he never spoke of it, but I know they haunted him the rest of his life.
He knew the meaning of life and the importance of family. He built the house I and my brother and sisters grew up in. It was a safe, happy and loving home. We didn’t always get what we wanted but he always made sure we had what we needed, working 2 jobs for many years. Our holidays were wonderful. And we went camping to many different places many times during the summers. I have many many happy childhood memories.
In addition to the values he taught me, he also passed on valuable skills, stressing that self-sufficiency leads to feeling self-worth, and gains the respect of others (“respect is earned by doing, not granted by complaining and demanding”). He taught me carpentry, electrical, plumbing, car repair, and so much more. After marriage, I built my own house (with lots of help from Dad).
He did so much for me. He was there when I needed him. And that’s really what being a Dad is all about.
I helped him and my Mom as much as I could in their later years, but it was nowhere near as much as he had done for me. I miss him and my Mom every moment of every day.
I never said it enough: “Thank you Dad”. And I possibly never said “I love you Dad”. But I’m saying it now.
My father instilled within me being inquisitive about physical things. Innovation followed after degrees in Physics and Mechanical Engineering leading to becoming an independent inventor.
Dad said to be honest. My word is my bond. When I went to work always be early. If I showed up on time I was late. I need to do an honest days work while I’m there. I have received many increases in pay by following this advice. I’m now 73 and my Dad came from the depression.
If you always do your best you should never have to apologize for your work. I always remind myself that I am actually working for GOD and it seems to make me do work even better.
My Heavenly Father told me, I will never leave you or forsake you. It has stuck with me all my life.
My only brother was 10 years older than I so I was raised as an only child. It was my job to do all things with my Daddy, hunted, fished, yard work, garden, everything! He was a wonderful man and Father but was never one to mince words. Of course, he taught me to drive. One the best pieces of advice he gave me was “always drive like everyone else on the road is crazy”. Just think about it, so simple, but has kept me from trouble. He is gone now. I have never had an accident and think of his words every time I drive.
Happy Fathers Day Poppa.
My Dad gave me a great love for the arts and music. He was a retired fire captain and a Jazz musician, he was so cool.
Father’s Day is awsome! To experience the care, love and protection shared with a father is noteworthy.
Although my father is deceased, the memories or working together in his business and travel was an experience others can only imagine.
Father’s Day is not secondary to Mother’s Day – they’re equally important!
We must cherish and enjoy the simple moments shared with our parents because they will not be with us forever.
Happy Father’s Day to dad’s across America. Father’s – continue your good work. 👍
Stay calm and sane. Don’t let other drivers behavior upset you.
Teach a child in the ways he should go and in his old age, he won’t depart from it.
I learned many valuable lessons from my father. My father was an entrepreneur before this word was popularly used to describe a person who is his own boss and runs his own business from our living room. Our living room was like a real barber shop. My father was a barber and thought of as one of the very best black barbers in DC many many many years ago. He also had a regular job. My father lived in our home and he was very demanding but never present as a dad should be. The valuable lessons that he conveyed to me was to run in the opposite direction of any man who remotely displayed or possessed such disturbing characteristics. When I was old enough to be in a relationship I knew exactly what I would not tolerate or accept from a man who I intended to live the rest of my life with. Although my father was not a good role model I learned some extremely valuable lessons. I learned many of the don’t accept this type of behavior under any circumstances. I never had a close relationship with my father and it took me many years to understand and to forgive. But he gave me an upfront and personal blueprint of life. When we make the wrong choices and have to live with the consequences. This blueprint that he displayed enabled me to pick a man of great character and integrity. A man who I was married to for 32 years and with for 36 years until his death. And someone who I will love and cherish until the day I die. And he was most definitely an incredible father and an amazing husband. And my father helped me to pick him because he was the total opposite of what my father was.
My Dad Passed when I was 19 years old. I just realized that I have been w/o him longer than he lived. I was just at the point in my life when I started to realize that he was a well spring of knowledge and wisdom and not some nagging stone around my neck.
At my age individual memories become blurred but the overall feeling of his principles, and life force of his behavior toward colleagues and women in general and most of all my mother have been and inspiration to me during the sentience of my 76 years. Thank you, Dad, I miss you! Much Love, J
My dad taught me the value of courtesy. He said, “Son, courtesy doesn’t cost you a dime, but it always pays dividends.”
About forty years ago, I was watching rising home prices and interest rates in a panic. I remember telling my dad that I needed to buy a home before I was prices out of the American dream. He assured me that this was a bubble and advised me to put my money in the bank and wait for the opportunity that would come with the bubble burst. He said prices would fall when interest rates made the ‘monthly nut’ unbearable. Ten years later, I offered $160,000 for a brand new home that went on the market for $235,000. I could afford to pay 20% down because I had been saving my money, so, even mortgage rates in the mid teens, I could afford the ‘monthly nut’. I kept saving and in three years threw some money at the principal and refinanced at 7.25%. Later I refinanced at 4.25%.
I think about this a lot. I share this story a lot — especially now with home prices rising and interest rates rising. My father, who quit high school to join the Navy during World War II gave me better financial advice than any of the pundits.
Better to have it but not need it..than need it and not have it.
My Dad was a hard-working Christian man that was handicap from childhood. Back then they did not have ADA (American Disability Act) my dad worked 2 jobs to provide for Mom, sister and me. He did not understand the enjoyment of playing sports until my senior year. After that he would make sure there was some kind pizza, bar-b-que or get together for team and dates.
Which I followed when our youngest went to UF, I would pull my smoker and cook so they could sell BQ sandwiches or hot dogs for house money.
Biggest lesson that has stuck with me, “if you need a tool more than once, go buy one… and if you brower something take it back when finish. My wife tells me “you sound like your dad” when I have to remind my oldest to bring my tools back. 🙂 I miss that man.
My Father whom past 2 yrs worked for Astra Zeneca, Prepared Taxes, Was working as a Floater for Law Firm, and many more was a Great Man, he Golfed enjoyed Family and friends, went on Trips, was our Photographer, Christian, Taught me to be Good at Anything I wanted to do We spent a lot of times together and I enjoyed everything, i looked forward for my Vacations because i would go to the movies, and out to Eat and be with him all day, we always spent times together, i would never forget he went to a wedding and bought home a piece of cake, it was very good i said dad where did this cake come from he said CANNONS BAKERY IN THE ASTRO SHOPPING CENTER OFF OF KIRWOOD HWY, IN WILMINGTON, DE TIL THIS DAY I ALWAYS GET MY CAKES FROM THERE HE IS THE BEST DAD AND I WILL CHERISH EVERYTHING HE HAS INSTILLED IN ME FOREVER LOVE, SELINA JONES.
Learn the in’s and out’s of running a business. Then apply that info to running YOUR BUSINESS, your home, your finances, and your goals. Do it with love.
My Dad’s words of wisdom were “Time spent, forever gone.” Use each moment wisely. He also advised, “it is not the amount of money you earn, but what you do with it.”
Dad said, “NEVER FORGET THE CHILD WITHIN.”
Dad always said. Get a job you love and are happy with. You go to work everyday to earn a living. You should love what you do. It also will show others you love what you do.
My father was killed when I was just a kid, so advice never flowed into any of my two ears. I may only share my advice to my son,. which was always , stay moral, stay hard when needed and most of all be a builder and never a destroyer. For a father to be hard to his son, is against every fiber in his body, but in order for his son to fly in this abusive world of today, he must go against his normal reactions to a situation and become that hard dad. Oh, and you say no not me, never will I be hard to my son. Then my friend, you might get away with it, but in the end , and when all the points of fatherhood are added up, that son will appreciated you more for doing just that, being hard when needed.
When my Dad was teaching me how to drive, at my first lesson, before I even turned the key to start the engine, but after we had checked the car to make sure it was road-worthy, he gave me the most important piece of advice that I was never to forget:
“When you’re driving, that’s ALL you’re doing. You can listen to the radio, you can converse with your passengers, but DON’T get distracted by anything or anyone. Keep your eyes on the road ahead, look as far ahead as you can see so that you’re not caught off-guard by hidden dangers. Scan the instrument panel, look in all three mirrors and listen for any strange noises. Those sounds could be an indication that something is wrong. Let everyone know around you your intentions and don’t make any sudden changes without signalling if possible. You’ve only got one life. Don’t give it to any vehicle.”
He was a mechanic, car dealer and a Certified Flight Instructor. He taught me not just to drive a car, but how to care for it. He also taught me how to drive a boat and fly an airplane. I am grateful that he gave me all that instruction and it has shaped my life for the better. He’s been gone for 28 years and I miss him a lot.
After I had grown and learned from the Bible, I reciprocated by teaching him the Bible’s hope for the future. We both became Jehovah’s Witnesses and I look forward to seeing him again in the resurrection to life in paradise here on Earth.
NO GOING BACK !
Always pay your debts, no matter how small.
Always keep your “Word”
Your “Handshake” can define who you are.
You can only have 2 of the 3 when having work done: Good, Fast, or Cheap!
Work hard! Do your best! And have fun!
I’m a daughter that wants to share. My Dad’s example of living was inspirational throughout my life. He was a pastor snd a true spiritual believer in there being a higher power to guide and protect me through life’s strife, offer me many blessings and taught me to be grateful. Thank goodness for my Dad’s influence in my life which taught me to be open to quietly listen for the guidance offered to effectively handle many of life’s challenges. Today, I enjoy a grateful peace as I deal with all of life’s turmoil. I wish this for everyone!
Do your best. Leave God the rest.
My dad was very good Christian man he always read bible an prayed with I had a little girl that was born with spinafeifa my dadsit with pray for God to take in his arms an prayed an
Sang songs to. She died 6 1/2 . He was just a wonderful at. Last of life he had alts when he was alot worse he was read bible an tired to read his at the end he didnt0 know any of us that worse over mom. An dad they both of them died Samei love him so much
One of the truest pieces of advise I got from my Dad is 99 percent of everything in life has to do with your attitude. You can make a decision every day to put on a smile and feel as good as possible and it will affect everything you say and do.
That is a great piece of advice! Thank you for sharing that with us, Rebecca 🙂