I Won Father’s Day and What’s Next

A quick video on winning Father’s Day and announcing I Love Don Week. It’s also a reminder that we’re about half-way through 2018 and we all made New Year’s Resolutions and promises to ourselves. Now’s the time to take a look at that list, recalibrate, and make sure we use the next six months to CRUSH IT!

In the (too lengthy) video above I talk this article on the subject of “regret.” I also mention Gary Vaynerchuk and a huge theme he hammers is about looking in an old person’s face and seeing the pain of regret. It’s not about regretting what they did …it’s almost always about regretting something they didn’t do.

“According to psychologist Tom Gilovich, lead author on “The Ideal Road Not Taken,” published in the journal Emotion, our regrets that bother us the most involve failing to live up to our “ideal selves.” Basically, we’re not as bothered by the mistakes we’ve made or the things we ought to have done as we are bothered by never becoming the person we truly wanted to be.”

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Dad Diary: Wear Sunscreen

Life is about fooling people and tricking them into things. Right? Like, I tricked my wife into thinking I was a great guy worth marrying, and I fooled her parents into thinking I’d be a good husband to their daughter, but little did they know I had no idea what kinda husband and son-in-law I’d be. Then I kept up the long con, and tricked my wife into thinking I’d be a quality father, so much so, she and I had three children together. I’ve tricked every boss I’ve ever had into believing I would be a productive, reliable employee.

Fooled you all, right?

Currently, I’m spending most of my time making sure my children are fooled into thinking I know anything about being a dad and hoping that somehow, maybe through movies and magazine articles, they’ll pick up some tips about becoming quality people, students, and citizens as they grow older.

In a couple of weeks, I’m going to speak in front of 300+ college students and rattle off some advice, share some wisdom, will tell some stories, and they’ll probably be tricked by my charm and ability to speak in front of people (which, can I be honest, always makes me nervous, and I read from my notes alot, and I’m telling you that because, again, I’m a total fraud – I don’t like speaking in public).

Earlier this week I gave advice to an old friend on their resume, offered another friend some job-seeking advice, and I think I tried to tell my 14-year-old daughter something thought-provoking about team sports, trying out, not being afraid to fail, and enjoying the good and bad, and keeping everything in perspective.

Ha! Right! Like I do any of that. I recently saw a friend post on Facebook that their house was for sale and I won’t lie …their success and my lack-of success shook me for about a whole week.

Who am I to give advice? I’m not. Truth be told, almost everything I think came from a song by Baz Luhrmann called “Everybody’s Free (to Wear Sunscreen)”. And I just learned he’s a total fraud, too. He took the lyrics from a Chicago Tribune columnist named Mary Schmich who wrote the words as part of a column in 1997. It gets worse. I’m acting like I know this, but I don’t. I learned it from Peter Economy and his Inc. column about the song and article.

“You, too, will get old. And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.”

I guess what I’m saying is, if someday my kids read this Blog entry, they’ll know I’m a fraud and I’m just repeating the advice I got from my parents, the advice I read in books, and from lessons learned in the song “Everybody’s Free (to Wear Sunscreen). It will be hard for them to know they’ve been fooled, but they’ll also see Baz fooled me, and Peter fooled some people. The only person who’s off the hook is Mary because she wrote the original words.

My advice? Master the ability to trick people and fool them into thinking good things about you. Oh, and wear sunscreen.

Dad Diary: How Dare I?

I have some nerve telling my kids they can “do anything” and should “follow their dreams.”  I have no business telling them to “dare greatly” and “don’t be afraid of failure” when I sit here, day after day, knowing I have a book inside me, and a screenplay that would 100% get made, if only I would write them.

I actually have three slam dunk movie script ideas.

But, those ideas are “in my head” and in my head they stay. It’s that whole “fear” thing, right? I know these are can’t-miss, slam-dunk ideas, but as long as I don’t finish them, write them down, and show them to anyone, well, I can cling to that illusion. I know full well that it’s possible when I finish that screenplay or finish that book, the next steps aren’t going to happen exactly as I dream they will.

What are the “next steps” in my fantasy? In the case of the screenplay (that I’ll co-write with my brother), we’ll approach the Sklar Brothers (who I’ve written the movie for), or I’ll work through my friend K.V. who knows Vance Degeneres, and I’ll have the perfect elevator pitch for the entire plot of the movie with the perfect title. They’ll admire my brashness, like I’m an older Quentin Terrantino, and the idea will be impossible to ignore. Somehow, we’ll sign papers and pitch it to studios and it will get made.

I don’t know how much money a screenwriter gets paid compared to everyone else who works on the movie, but I don’t even care all that much about that. I want my movie to get made.

My fantasy with the book? I’m writing it simply as a keepsake for my family, full of family stories, but the “fantasy” happens when someone outside of my family gets ahold of the book, loves all the stories and lessons, recognizes themselves (and all Americans in the stories) and overnight hundreds of thousands of copies of my book are ordered and I’m a “new voice” in literature.  People will call me a “late bloomer” because I didn’t write my first book until I was 45 years old, but all of a sudden, I’ll become a writer and author and for the next 20 years, I’ll write a series of books based on my experiences – experiences that I’ll just “have a way” of making humorous, interesting, and inspiring.

I wish I would’ve done this 10 years ago.  Nope. I wish I would’ve done this 15 years ago. Nope. 25 years ago when I was 20 years old.

Well. Why. Not. How?

My 11-year-old said to me when I talked about my movie idea, “come on, Dad. You should just do it.”

I should. I will.

 

Dad Diary: My Lenten Letter to My Children

Paczki | DonutsYes, I had a pazcki for breakfast. Yes, I’m going to eat my favorite fast food for lunch. Yes, I’m going to have an Old Fashioned this evening, but it’s Fat Tuesday, for heaven’s sake. However, tomorrow, with the first day of Lent, it’s going to be a “first-day” of a new life where I take care of myself, my body, and my brain first in order to be a better father, husband, employee, friend, and human.

All religions talk extensively about the greatest gift we have from God is our body. Do most of us treat our body as a gift?  Ahem. My recent adventure onto a scale at my Dr.’s office suggests, no, I treat my body like a rental storage unit (and my cholesterol results suggested I’m a hoarder and that storage unit has every old magazine I ever subscribed to). I look around any mall or grocery store, or theme park, or sporting event, and looking at most people’s bodies, well, I can see most of us don’t treat our bodies like temples and gifts. I’m not breaking any ground there.

I’m going to change that. Starting tomorrow and pray for me that it’s forever.  44 years are in the books on this body I have. Let’s see if I can get 44 more, and make them healthy and fit.  And now, a letter I wrote to the people who love me. They say, if you write something down, you’re more likely to follow through. Let’s test that theory.

“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body” -Paul in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

Dad Diary: I Promise to Take Care of Myself

My oldest daughter often frowns when I head to the cupboard or fridge for a snack, or if I take seconds at dinner. When I say I had some fast-food for lunch, she gets on my case. She’s right to do that. As I’ve documented many times on this Blog, I have heart disease coming and going on both sides of my family, Alzheimers is out there in my genes, and all by myself I added Bronchiectasis so I gotta take care of my lungs, too.

Basically, I should be 25 pounds overweight and I shouldn’t eat what I eat.

The commercial embedded below that’s running during the Olympics has really gotten my attention. I take care of my house. I baby my car like it’s a vintage classic. I try to keep my dog healthy. My iPhone is updated and my PCs run at their peak performance level. My lawn is artwork. The kitchen? Oh, I keep up on that and it’s an oasis.

Yet, I neglect me.

Why?!?!?

A good family friend passed away this weekend. He lived a great life. Had a wonderful marriage, three great kids, had grandchildren, and only being in his 60s, just seemed too, too young to leave us.  I lost my Mom 13 1/2 years ago when she was only 59.  My Uncle passed away two years ago this month, and he wasn’t quite 70.  I don’t want to be a guy who people say “to soon” about. Now, I can’t say by losing weight and exercising, and eating healthy will guarantee I live forever, but I can guarantee those things will make the days I have better, and let’s be real – of course I’ll live longer.

I’m writing this Blog a mere 48 hours from the start of Lent, and I always try some life-improving promises and I give up bad things, but this year, I’m going to write a letter to my kids. I won’t give it to them, but I’ll read it over and over again. I’m going to promise them that I’m going to take care of myself.

Part of being a Dad is setting a good example and keeping promises to your kids. I’m going to promise them I’ll do everything in my power to make sure I’m around for as long as I can be.

What I’m Eating: Stress-Free Stuff

productimagemagnesiumlthreonateface300x500_300xIn 2018, I’m going to make money from my Blog. Yep. It’s gonna happen. And it’s gonna happen without me becoming a video-game review guy, or by Blogging about random stuff.  I’m going to make it a Dad Diary (which I’m surprised isn’t really out there) all about the stuff middle-aged father-dudes care about.

big thing I’m into, as I approach my 45th birthday, is reducing stress and improving sleep. Less stress and adequate sleep is the key to longevity and daily sanity.

So here’s what I’m doing:

  • Magnesium L-Threanate (two good articles here and here) supplement – there are many Magnesium supplements but this one is, “is heavily linked to improved learning and memory. “
  • Leafy spinach in a smoothie (my recipe is below) because it’s a natural source of Magnesium
  • Daily Fish Oil Supplement (for my Omega 3s) from Trader Joe’s
  • Half a Trader Joe’s Men’s Multi-Vite (why “half”? Because I eat good food and take a scoop of Green Vibrance daily; the multi-vitamin will give me the Vitamin C & E that are so important)
  • Almond Butter with celery and dark chocolate chips as a night time snack

71xqy3bti0l-_sx522_Don’s Dad Diary Calming Smoothie Recipe:

  • 1 cup chocolate almond milk
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup (or a good handful) of leafy spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 2 Tbl Spoons Almond Butter
  • 1/2 cup ice

Mix it all together in a Vitamix (or do your best with your blender …but seriously …invest in your sanity and get a Vitamix …a Vitamix is basically a garbage disposal on your counter-top …there’s nothing it can’t chew up and make into a smoothie).

Just gotta ad exercise and I think I’m adding years to my life.

Dad Diary: Clothes Mountain Has a Song

I might write a children’s book with the sole purpose of turning it into a cartoon, and with an awesome theme song.

Remember, I change the bed sheets each and ever week and my daugthers have clothes everywhereand since I refuse to determine which clothes are dirty, and which clothes are clean, I stack it all in a mountain.

Here’s the theme song. Picture this with a banjo and more lyrics.