Yesterday’s the past, tomorrow’s the future, but today is a gift. That’s why it’s called the present.’ — Bill Keane.
Too often, we can get caught up in the administration of life: the stresses of a day, the worry of a decision, and the comparison of oneself to others. In the back of our minds, we know we want more balance, more ease and the chance to really open our eyes to the world. That simply isn’t always possible.
As the parent of a toddler (18 months), who’s constantly working on a number of different projects inside and outside the home, I’m always trying to make the most of my time with my son. One way to do that is to adopt an occasional ‘reset’ trigger. This helps me focus and truly value the time my son and I have together.
When you have children, the constant drive to attend to their needs can make us feel like we’re fire-fighting, simply wanting to get to the end of the day and into our beds for at least a brief moment of rest before starting at the mad house all over again. Then, there are the moments where everything else falls quiet, where reflection and growth are at their finest, and where—in that moment—we can truly appreciate the gift we have in our lives. Arriving there sometimes requires a ‘reset’ trigger; an action that dads can take to evoke a unique appreciation of their roles as fathers, influencers, and guide, for our very special kids.
Recently we asked the DaddiLife community what triggered their ‘reset’ mode and some amazing insights came back.
‘Sitting and holding both my girls while dozing…just makes me so happy to have them.’
Those precious bonding moments are a great source of strength for many a dad reset moment. Some may even find they wake mid-nap and plant a sneaky kiss on their children’s heads.
When we add some music into this mix, the results can be amazing. As Mino from the community says ‘Listening to acoustic rich music whilst being with my baby helps me be in the moment. Everything else on my mind just withers away!’
‘Hanging out the clothes to dry’
The moments where we spend a little more time than usual with our children’s things, can bring out some unique reflections and special memories.
From seeing their favourite socks to that vest which seems to keep getting bigger by the week, these things can trigger an amazing ‘reset’ in dads.
As Benjamin from the community puts it – ‘a big thing that II feel strongly about when I do it is hang out my little bubs socks on the clothesline lol. I know it’s a small thing but when I hang those tiny little things up I think about her instantly and smile :)’
‘Running followed by breakfast’
Working out our stresses can be a great way to reset. Sweating out those bad vibes followed by a great meal together with family can be as strong a physical reset, as well as a mental one.
As Richard says ‘Going trail running and coming back to make Saturday breakfast with the kids makes my week.’
Dads can be protective, we get that, but in those moments of protection, some even find their own reset mode.
Whether it’s checking on the kids at night, or them checking in with you screaming ‘DADDY’ as soon as you walk through the door, that moment can overpower any other feelings dads carry at the time, and put things firmly in their place.
As Keith from the community says – ‘ Realising after 5 mins that I miss him when he’s gone to bed…. Even though it could have been one of ‘those’ days!!!!’
‘Running through old photos’
One of my personal favourites is looking through old photos, reminiscing on the times when our kids were literally babies, and just how quickly time is passing by.
With our amazing photo/video memories all accessible on our phones, this ‘reset’ mode is achievable at the touch of a button for a ‘mini-reset’ where needed too.
Don’t have a reset mode?
There are a few ways to discover your very own reset:
1. Where do you keep your special memories of you and your baby together? Some dads use apps and photos, some others little collection boxes. Whatever way you keep your special memories make sure this is fairly accessible.
2. What were your baby’s favourite toys/items to wear? Whether it’s that previous favourite toy or that T-shirt they loved wearing so much, when we find these items again our memories will almost immediately reset our way of thinking and make us see how quickly time is passing by.
3. How have you learned to re-focus in other roles? Whether it’s physical activity, joining a group or developing a new friendship, these habits will help you define how best you can get into your ‘reset’ mode.
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Photo credit: Getty Images