I’ve mentioned my father in a few of my blogs already. I like to give a nod to him every once and a while because he deserves a lot of credit for shaping into the woman I am today.
I had a very unique relationship with my father, Edward. He was a single parent and he raised me full time. He spent all his energy on teaching me the important truths of life and making sure that I had a good head on my shoulders.
I took a trip down memory lane this Father’s Day. It was my first without him. My father taught me so much and not a day goes by where I don’t think of him. I decided to share four of his lessons that stood out to me with you. I hope that if they resonate with you too that you can incorporate them into your life like I have.
My father was always very kind and caring. He always put his children first. He spent many years with his mother, rehabilitating her after an accident and later caring for her after she developed dementia.
I would constantly hear him say things like “Say something nice or don’t say anything at all” and “Treat others how you wish to be treated”. He believed in karma and did good things without expecting reward. He kept his word. He’d always offer you anything he had and he didn’t need much for himself.
Kindness was a type of currency for my father and he gave it to everyone. He knew that giving kindness felt just as good as it did to receive it. And doing good made way for more good to come back to you.
I strive to be kind to everyone. Some days it can be challenging but I don’t let that stop me from trying. I realize that you can never truly know what another person is going through so it’s always better to be kind to them. Say something nice to someone, give a stranger a compliment, offer to do something nice for a friend. It’s the little things that can make the biggest impact. Chances are, if you share kindness with someone, they will share it with someone else and the cycle will continue.
My father was the epitome of real. He thought being anything other than yourself was a waste of time. He had a strong energy that you could always feel. If you ever asked him about something you would always get an honest answer. He was a truth speaker. It was so important for him that everything always be genuine and come from the heart. He also wasn’t afraid to be silly and have fun.
When I was young, my father would notice when I would come home with an attitude that I picked up at school. He recognized me through all the personalities I was trying on and would always remind me to “go back to being you”, he would say. He always valued honesty and never wanted me to be anyone other than myself.
These days I try my best to always be authentic. Years ago I struggled with not feeling like I could be myself around my friends or in my relationship but now I find it hard to be fake or put on any kind of facade. Any emotion I’m feeling, I show it. When I hear a song I like, I dance to it. If I get a weird vibe off of someone or a situation I remove myself. Now I find it so simple. People have told me that I inspire them to be more authentic in their daily lives and that fills me with joy. The older I get the more I understand that it truly is a waste of time to be anyone other than yourself.
My father had this amazing trust in the Universe. He was a spiritual man but had long shed his Catholic roots. He embraced the teachings in the “Course In Miracles” and used that as his guidebook.
In the beginning of his days as a single father, he quit his job and even filed for bankruptcy. But having that kind of instability didn’t bother him. His first priority was spending all his time with his children and making sure that he could teach and influence them in positive ways. He always trusted that we would have enough and we always did.
My father listened to his instincts. He had a great relationship with his intuition. He would meditate often and ask for guidance. Even when we were put in tough situations, somehow he would always get an answer. I can still hear him telling me “trust that everything will work out”. He said that the most important thing I could do was know that it was all going to be fine. He would tell me that believing in the future as if it had already happened was the key to manifesting anything I wanted in life.
This behaviour is deeply instilled in me. I have always believed that everything will turn out fine, that I will live a great life and that I will be happy. And I know without a doubt that I will succeed in my dreams. It’s these simple beliefs that carry me through my every day. They keep me focused and motivated. There are still times where I feel lost and I’m not sure what to do next but I trust that I will figure it out. I still anticipate a few curve balls. Not everything always goes as planned but I also believe that everything happens for a reason. What’s going to happen is meant to happen.
The most important thing that I learned from my father is that love matters above all else. He taught me that everyone’s actions are based on feelings of love or fear. When your actions come from a place of love you are opening yourself up to abundance and pouring more goodness into this world. When your actions come from a place of fear you are closing yourself off to any good that wants to come your way. Even if someone makes you mad or treats you badly you should always send them love over picking a fight.
Now that I’m grown up I can see how difficult this advice can be to follow. It’s so easy to get angry or hold a grudge. However, to offer love and forgiveness is the best option because, as was said earlier, you get what you give. It takes strength and control but I find that once I am able to open up my heart and forgive someone I feel better.
Above all he taught me to love myself. Without loving myself I could not be able to do any good in this world. He told me that I have a unique set of tools and experiences and I can use them to change the world in a radical way. This is why I’m so passionate about sharing this message with the world.
My father lived and taught me to live by these four virtues. The lessons I learned from listening to these simple teachings as well as observing his daily actions has really shaped me into who I am. I feel blessed to have these virtues instilled in me and I’m sharing them with you because I think if everyone knew and practiced them we would all feel a little better and the world would be a better place. I believe my dad would want that.