Like many fathers and sons, my dad and I disagree about a lot of things. He's given me great advice over the years that I have willfully ignored, choosing to make my own mistakes and nearly always regretting ignoring his suggestions later on.
When I think of the best advice I've ever gotten from my dad, though, I don't think of the things he's said, but rather the things he's done:
- He's given me great advice about how to be a good husband one day, by always treating my mom like a Queen, doing his fair share of work around the house and putting her needs before his own.
- He's given me great advice about how to be a productive member of society, by always doing his part to support our family, by working two jobs when he needed to.
- He's given me great advice about how to give back to the community, by assisting at soup kitchens, prisons, and always taking the time to talk to those in need rather than just brushing them aside.
If I did have to cite one concrete verbal suggestion that stays with me, it would be the mantra my dad has always told me over and over again: "If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything."
While I'm not sure if I know exactly what I stand for — at least I'm not nearly as certain as my father has always been — I do know that when I do figure it out, I hope I'll stand half as tall as my dad always has.