The importance of parenting advice for dads
As a new dad, you may be feeling a mix of excitement, joy, and perhaps a little anxiety. Parenthood is a journey unlike any other, and it’s natural to seek guidance along the way. That’s why I’ve compiled this list of 50 essential parenting tips for new dads.
Time is a precious commodity, and by utilizing the wisdom of experienced fathers who have walked this path before you, you can make the most of your time as a new parent. So, let’s check the best ways to discover how you can navigate this incredible journey with confidence and love.
New dads should remember…
In the whirlwind of becoming a new dad, and a great dad at that, it’s easy to get caught up in the chaos and forget the most important thing – cherishing the little moments. Time flies by so quickly, and before you know it, your little one will be all grown up.
Take a deep breath, be present, and truly embrace every milestone. It’s not about the grand gestures or extravagant gifts; it’s about the love and time you invest in your child. Remember, you are their hero, and the bond you create will last a lifetime. They are only young once!
The best piece of advice for new dads
If there was one piece of advice I could give to new dads, it would be to prioritize self-care. Taking care of yourself is not selfish; it’s essential for your well-being and your ability to be a present and engaged father. Make time for hobbies, exercise, and moments of solitude. Find healthy ways to manage stress and seek support when needed.
By nurturing your own mental and physical health, you’ll be better equipped to handle the challenges and joys of fatherhood. Raising kids is awesome but to be a good parent you must take care of your own mental health. Period…
The role of a father figure in a child’s life
As a father figure, you play a crucial role in your child’s life. Your presence, love, and guidance shape their worldview and set the foundation for their future relationships. Be involved, be present, and be a positive role model. Show them what it means to be kind, respectful, and empathetic.
Spend quality time together, whether it’s playing games, reading stories, or simply having conversations. Your influence as a father figure will have a profound impact on their development and happiness.
Tips for maintaining work-life balance as a new dad
Balancing work and family life can be a challenge for new dads. It’s important to find a healthy equilibrium that allows you to excel in both areas. Communicate openly with your employer about your family commitments and explore flexible work options if available.
Prioritize your time and set boundaries to ensure you have quality moments with your child. Remember, it’s not about the quantity of time spent, but the quality of the time you invest in your family. I know it’s not an easy thing to do, but it’s doable. Best advice for dads who work too much: Focus on the kids, they will cry at your funeral, not your work colleagues.
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Taking care of your baby
Essential tips and Advice for new dads
Caring for a newborn can be overwhelming, especially for first-time dads. Here are some essential tips to help you navigate this new chapter with confidence:
- Be patient and understanding: Your baby is learning, just like you are. Approach every challenge with patience and empathy.
- Be hands-on: Change diapers, give baths, and participate in feeding. These tasks help you bond with your baby and share the load with your partner. And at the end of the day, it might have been the best part of your day.
- Trust your instincts: No one knows your baby better than you. Trust your instincts and don’t be afraid to ask for help when needed. Not sure where to look? Check out social media like Facebook Dad groups for help. Such as Helping Dads Balance Wellness or Dads Talk Group. They are full of info for you!
- Create a routine: Babies thrive on routine. Establish regular feeding, sleeping, and playtime schedules to provide a sense of security and predictability. If they wake up in the middle of the night, rest assured that it’s temporary and eventually he/she will be sleeping hard. Please read my article about putting your baby to sleep. It might help out.
- Take care of yourself: Remember to eat well, get enough sleep, and prioritize self-care. Your well-being is crucial for your ability to care for your baby.
The first year
Challenges and joys of fatherhood
The first year of fatherhood is filled with both challenges and incredible moments of joy. From sleepless nights to first steps, every day brings something new. Embrace the journey and remember that you’re not alone. Connect with other dads, join support groups, and seek advice from experienced fathers.
Celebrate the milestones, big and small, and cherish the bond you’re building with your child. It may not always be easy, but the rewards of fatherhood are immeasurable. The best practical advice I could give any new dad is this: The best thing that has ever happened to you is to have this beautiful new baby. It might not feel like that at times. Enjoy the new role and the simple things that come along with it.
The little things that matter
Creating a good example for your child
As a father, the little things you do matter. Children are incredibly perceptive and learn by observing your actions. Show kindness, respect, and empathy in your everyday interactions. Teach them the value of hard work, honesty, and perseverance.
Be mindful of the words you use and the way you handle conflicts. By creating a good example, you’re shaping their character and setting them up for a successful future.
Dealing with sleepless nights
Coping strategies and Advice for new dads
Sleep deprivation is a common challenge for new parents, and it’s essential to find coping strategies that work for you. Here are some tips to help you navigate those sleepless nights:
- Share the load: Alternate nighttime responsibilities with your partner. Taking turns can ensure both of you get some much-needed rest.
- Nap when the baby naps: Take advantage of any opportunity to catch up on sleep during the day. Lack of Sleep is a real deal…it’ll bite you in the ass. Get some rest!
- Establish a bedtime routine: Create a soothing routine that signals to your baby that it’s time to sleep. This can help them settle more easily.
- Seek support: Don’t hesitate to ask for help from family or friends. They can provide temporary relief so you can get some rest.
- Practice self-care: Prioritize your own sleep and well-being. Even a short nap or a relaxing activity can make a significant difference in your energy levels.
Finding your own approach as a new dad
As a new dad, you’ll likely encounter a variety of parenting advice and opinions. Remember that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to parenting. Trust your instincts and find a style that aligns with your values and beliefs. Be open to learning, adapt as needed, and remember that mistakes are part of the learning process.
Embrace the unique bond you have with your child and let it guide your parenting journey. Which style are you? Either way, have a good time doing what you’re doing.
Please Find more information on Fatherhood and more in my book Stories and Strategies for Modern Dads
Being involved fathers
The benefits and impact on kids’ lives
Research consistently shows that involved fathers have a positive impact on their children’s lives. By being actively engaged in your child’s upbringing, you’re fostering their emotional well-being, cognitive development, and social skills.
Make time for one-on-one activities, listen attentively to their thoughts and feelings, and be present in their lives. Your involvement as a father is invaluable and will leave a lasting impression on your child.
A good way to look at being involved is to spend as much time as humanly possible with your kid. Think about it as investing your time/love(currency) into your child(the most explosive stock to own for life). The more ‘currency’ you put in, the more ‘valuable’ that child becomes to the world, and to their parents. The amount of time and love you give to your child will come back to you 1000 folds in the future. Invest in your child with all the love you can.
Check the Youtube channel of Dads Who Try they have great advice for dads young and old… Get involved early and reap the benefits for life…
Direct advice for dads
Being a new dad comes with its fair share of challenges. Here are some direct pieces of advice to help you overcome them:
- Embrace the unknown: Parenthood is full of surprises. Embrace the uncertainty and be open to learning as you go. Don’t worry about trying different things too.
- Communicate with your partner: Effective communication is key. Talk openly about your fears, expectations, and frustrations. Together, you can navigate any challenge.
- Practice self-compassion: You’re doing the best you can. Be kind to yourself and remember that it’s okay to ask for help.
- Seek balance: Find a balance between your role as a father and your own identity. Nurture your relationships, passions, and hobbies outside of parenting.
- Enjoy the journey: Parenthood is a beautiful and transformative experience. Embrace the highs and lows, and cherish the moments that make it all worthwhile.
The Never Ending Conclusion
Embracing the journey of fatherhood
As a new dad, you have a world of love and joy ahead of you. Embrace the journey, savor the time you have with your child, and remember that every moment is an opportunity for growth and connection. Take the wisdom shared here by experienced fathers, adapt it to your own unique situation, and create a nurturing environment for your child.
Cherish the time you spend together, and make every moment count. Parenthood is an incredible adventure, and by being an involved, loving father, you’re shaping the future of your child and leaving a lasting legacy. Enjoy this beautiful journey of fatherhood, and may your time as a new dad be filled with love, laughter, and precious memories.
Plenty of Tips for you
- Be Present: Spend quality time with your child and be engaged in their life.
- Teamwork: Parenting is a joint effort. Support your partner and share responsibilities.
- Patience: Children require patience. Take deep breaths during challenging moments.
- Sleep: Prepare for sleep deprivation and be flexible with your own sleep schedule.
- Diaper Duty: Embrace changing diapers and contribute to the daily care routine.
- Learning: Continuously educate yourself about child development and parenting techniques.
- Communication: Listen actively and communicate openly with your partner about parenting decisions.
- Flexibility: Adapt to the changing needs of your child as they grow.
- Self-Care: Prioritize self-care to maintain your own physical and mental well-being.
- Bonding: Establish a strong bond with your child through play, cuddling, and reading.
More Fatherhood Tips
- Safety: Create a safe environment at home to prevent accidents and injuries.
- Routine: Establish a consistent daily routine to provide stability for your child.
- Positive Reinforcement: Use positive reinforcement to encourage good behavior.
- Set Boundaries: Establish clear and consistent boundaries for discipline.
- Apologize: It’s okay to apologize to your child when you make mistakes.
- Quality over Quantity: Quality time matters more than the quantity of time spent together.
- Empathy: Understand your child’s emotions and teach them empathy by example.
- Unplugging: Limit screen time and engage in real-world activities.
- Independence: Encourage your child’s independence while offering guidance.
- Hobbies: Share your interests and hobbies with your child to bond over common activities.
More advice for Dads
- Healthy Eating: Model healthy eating habits and offer nutritious food options.
- Reading: Read to your child regularly to foster language development.
- Playdates: Arrange playdates to help your child socialize and make friends.
- Outdoor Time: Spend time outdoors to promote physical activity and exploration.
- Chores: Involve your child in age-appropriate household chores.
- Consistency: Be consistent with rules and consequences to avoid confusion.
- Celebrate Milestones: Celebrate your child’s achievements, no matter how small.
- Multitasking: Develop multitasking skills to juggle various parental duties.
- Sense of Humor: Use humor to diffuse tense situations and connect with your child.
- Adaptability: Be ready to adapt your parenting approach as your child’s needs evolve.
Major Changes are Coming
- Be a Role Model: Model the behavior you want to see in your child.
- Embrace Mess: Be prepared for messes and chaotic moments; they’re part of parenting.
- Active Listening: Listen attentively to your child’s thoughts, questions, and stories.
- Praise Effort: Praise your child’s effort rather than just focusing on outcomes.
- Outdoor Exploration: Encourage curiosity by exploring parks, nature trails, and museums.
- Family Time: Schedule regular family activities to strengthen bonds.
- Soothing Techniques: Learn various soothing techniques to comfort your child.
- Respect Individuality: Respect your child’s unique personality and interests.
- Flexibility with Plans: Be prepared to change plans due to unexpected situations.
- Stay Calm: Maintain your composure even during challenging moments.
They are Only Young Once!
- Sensory Play: Engage in sensory play activities to stimulate development.
- Limit Comparisons: Avoid comparing your child’s progress to others’.
- Positive Language: Use positive and encouraging language when talking to your child.
- Mindful Tech Use: Model responsible and limited technology use.
- Create Traditions: Establish family traditions that your child can look forward to.
- Respect Sleep Patterns: Understand your child’s sleep needs and patterns.
- Teachable Moments: Seize everyday moments as opportunities for learning.
- First Aid: Learn basic first aid skills to handle minor injuries.
- Ask for Help: Don’t hesitate to ask for advice or help from experienced parents.
- Enjoy the Journey: Cherish every moment, as time with your child flies by quickly.
Part Deux of this column…
Here are some Real stories along with some advice for Dads from Dad Groups on Facebook as well as my own Facebook group ‘Helping Dad Balance Wellness, Growth and Fun.’
Advice For New Dads
Build up your energy capacity. Yes, this is not the standard dad advice but I’ve found that acquiring adequate energy to be one of the most undervalued parenting skills. Everyone wants more of it but everyone has less energy with each passing day after your child’s birth. More energy as a new parent means a greater frustration tolerance and the ability to live in the moment which leads to being a better spouse and dad.
Vital to maintaining ample energy is prioritizing sleep and eating healthy (yes, easier said than done as a new parent). Yet these factors alone won’t fuel your energy reservoirs for the long haul. Here are 3 basic but effective ways to improve your energy capacity:
- Walk more. Simple but effective. Increase your daily steps to at least 12,000/day.
- Lift. This could be as little as 2x/week for 20 minutes at a stretch but more is better.
- Do HIIT. The minimum effective dose is one Tabata session a week, but shoot 2-3 times a week for better results.
By using these strategies you’ll not only improve your own physical and mental well-being but your ability to engage in those early joys of parenthood.
Brian Comly, is the founder of MindBodyDad, a blog dedicated to improving your physical health, mental health, and parenting skills in practical ways. Sign up for his weekly newsletter for more insights.
Benton A. J, Age 31,
Location: St George, Utah.
The best I can think to give new dads is to take parenting classes. Your kids deserve the best version of you. How better to do that than by continuing to study and improve?
My parents really did their best to try to raise me right. I grew up in a middle-class, suburban household (two actually). I always had what I needed, bit my parents weren’t always perfect. So there were some things missing from my own understanding of what a parent should do and be.
My ex wife left me and has been raising our daughter by herself, so I didn’t have any parenting experience for about five years. Then when I got remarried and had kids I had my doubts that I would be a good dad at all.
I know money isn’t always easy to come by, but “Unconditional Parenting” by Alfie Kohn is easily one of the best books on the market. “How to Raise an Emotionally Intelligent Child” by Dr. John Gottman is another great book!
There’s also this organization called Up To Parents (uptoparents.org) where you can take a free online parenting class! It honestly changed the way I thought about how not only I act in front of my own kids, but it grew and strengthened my resolve to be the best I can be for them.
Duncan M.O, Age 33,
I became a father on Friday 15 ,May at exactly 9:30 pm.As a new father, the journey of parenthood has been a profound and transformative experience for me. The moment my daughter,Adriella Kemuma Muge,came into this world, my heart swelled with an overwhelming mix of joy, love, and responsibility.
Throughout her growth and development, I have learned invaluable lessons that have shaped both my perspective on life and my role as a parent.
One of the most significant lessons I have learned is the power of unconditional love. From the very beginning, my daughter taught me that love knows no bounds. Through the sleepless nights, countless diaper changes, and tearful moments, I have discovered a reservoir of love within me that I never knew existed. It is a love that embraces every imperfection and celebrates every milestone, no matter how small.
As my daughter grows up, I have come to appreciate the importance of patience and flexibility. Parenting is a continuous learning process, and it demands adaptability. From mastering the art of soothing a crying baby to navigating the challenges of the teenage years, each stage requires a unique approach. I have learned to be patient with myself and my daughter, understanding that growth takes time and mistakes are part of the process.
Real Advice for Dads…
Moreover, being a father has shown me the significance of being present and attentive. Time passes swiftly, and moments that seem mundane can hold great significance in the eyes of a child. I have learned to cherish the little things, such as bedtime stories, family dinners, and playful interactions. These seemingly ordinary moments are the building blocks of a strong bond and happy memories.
As my daughter explores the world around her, I have rediscovered the wonder of curiosity. Witnessing her fascination with nature, art, and the unknown has rekindled my own sense of curiosity. I find myself eager to explore and learn alongside her, fostering a sense of wonder and appreciation for the beauty of life.
Being a father has also taught me the importance of setting a positive example. Children are highly observant and tend to mimic the behaviors they see in their parents. As my daughter grows, I strive to be a role model of kindness, integrity, and perseverance. I want her to know that she can achieve her dreams and that she is worthy of love and respect.
In conclusion, the journey of fatherhood has been a life-altering experience, shaping me into a more patient, loving, and present individual. As my daughter grows up, I am reminded daily of the profound impact parenting has on both the child and the parent.
Through the trials and triumphs of raising a child, I have come to understand the true meaning of unconditional love, patience, presence, curiosity, and positive influence. It is a journey I embrace with an open heart and a grateful spirit, knowing that the lessons I have learned will continue to shape me as a father and as a person for years to come.
Dean, Age 50
Location: Seoul, Korea (by way of Bridgewater, NS, Canada)
My son turns 20 next month. As a new father, I could never have predicted where he’d be at this stage in his journey or the path that would’ve led him here. I would never have imagined that he’d get his GED instead of graduating high school. There was no way he could enter university without taking the dreaded ‘suneung’ (Korean SAT). Yet he’s about to start the second semester of his second year of university.
When he was young, he played sports. He had an unhealthy obsession with Thomas the Tank Engine (I bet I can name more of Thomas’ friends than you). He took piano and violin lessons. There was a period when he filled notebook after notebook with Minecraft and Mario comics, so we sent him to art academies. Eventually, all those interests faded.
We got him a guitar for Christmas when he was 9 (he enjoyed playing the piano and the violin). He played it a handful of times before it started collecting dust, and I sold it. I figured the guitar wasn’t his ‘thing.’
Shortly after his eleventh birthday, one day after school:
“Dad, can I borrow your acoustic guitar?”
“Our class is doing a performance, and I don’t want to sing or play the recorder.”
“When’s the performance?”
“In about six weeks.”
“I don’t think that’s enough time to learn how to play the guitar, but here you go.”
Sure enough, he pulled it off—with flying colors and without any help from me. The following year, he got an electric guitar for Christmas, and the rest, as they say, is history. He auditioned for and got into a music high school (think Berkeley—but for teens). Unfortunately, he left that school in his second year with about half the students amid corruption claims.
He ended up getting his GED so he could apply for university. He passed the audition for a top school in Seoul to study contemporary music, majoring in guitar. Since he got early acceptance, he didn’t need to take the suneung.
My point? Provide your kids with opportunities. Let them try different things and encourage them when they show an interest. Their passions will change, but you can’t force a path or an interest on them. You can’t predict where life’s journey will take them.
But if you support them along the way, they’ll find their own way when they’re ready. And when they find their thing—oh boy! Good luck holding them back!
Advice for Dads from …
J. Peterson, Age 35
Location: New Mexico
Follow him Instagram: @liferichparents
Married 2 kids ( girl/3yrs & boy/16m)
My advice for new fathers is to dedicate time every week to pursue their passions and dreams. Live each day prioritizing your own well-being as much as your family’s. This way you will consistently experience more happiness, fulfillment and life satisfaction. Give as much energy to yourself as you do to your family and partner.
When you take care of your physical, emotional and mental needs, you will have more energy. You will also be more calm, more patient and more supportive to yourself and your family.
As a new father, I realized that living an intentional and purposeful life leads you to a life of spending time on your passions, moving closer to your goals, creating lifetime memories with your family and experiencing a deep sense happiness and peace of mind that can only come with an abundance of self-care and growth.
The deep sense of happiness and love for life only happens when you are taking the necessary time out of your week to take care of yourself. This deep sense not only benefits you, it only starts with you. The more you enjoy your days and weeks, the more you enjoy your life. And the more you enjoy your life, the better person, parent and spouse you will become. This love for life will transcend all parts of your life.
Nothing is as valuable as your happiness and nothing is as priceless as your peace of mind.
Celebrate Daddyisms !
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Please leave me a comment or contact me if you have any of your own advice for dads that you would like to share.