By Mark Brandenburg MA, CPCC
Fathers are becoming more involved in their families today. They have a deep desire to connect emotionally with their families. However, they often lack the skills to do so. Here are ten “gift ideas” for Father’s Day to help the father in your life to relax, enjoy, and to connect with other loved ones:
1. Admire what they do
Fathers do need to have their ego stroked and to have their families notice the quality of their work or other accomplishments. Letting them know will have their spirits soar.
2. Encourage them to share their life with their families.
Fathers often don’t easily share their everyday life with their families. It may seem “boring” to them to share the events of the day. Encouraging Dad to share will help others feel closer to him. And, it will be more likely they’ll share their lives with him!
3. Give him the gift of food
Are their Dads out there who don’t love to eat? Cook him a great meal, or take him out to dinner. A father with good food in front of him is a happy father.
4. Talk to him using a “bottom line” approach
Fathers like to get to the point. It’s harder for them to follow long, detailed stories. At least for one day, get right to the point concerning what you’re telling him. He’ll appreciate it, and he won’t stress about missing the details!
5. Be patient with him as he learns to raise his kids
Fathers aren’t always the most skilled at effective parenting, especially during the early stages. Be patient with him as he makes mistakes. If he feels criticized, he may lose hope and give up an opportunity to learn and grow. Gentle encouragement helps.
6. Ask him to get involved in an activity
Fathers love to be active, and they often connect with others by “doing something.” Ask the Dad in your family to go on a bike ride or go to a game. As long as their active, Dads are pretty happy.
7. Provide him with “vegetable time”
We don’t mean gardening here! Yes, dads like to be active, but they also like to vegetate sometimes. Give Dad some time to do nothing, and he’ll curl up and do nothing with the best of them!
8. Give him a romantic evening.
Fathers feel like handymen in their homes at times. Nothing will snap them out of that as quickly as a romantic evening. And, this isn’t over when the dinner or movie ends. It ends when he has permission to follow his biological urge after making love—sleeping!
9. Touch him
Dads love to be hugged and touched by their family members. And even if they don’t act like they do, hug them anyway! It helps them to leave their heads and enter their hearts.
10. Give him new power tools
OK, this one doesn’t really help him connect with others, but it does satisfy some deep urge within him. And if it makes him feel good, why not?
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