Early one September morning back in 2008 my life changed with the birth of my first son, Lincoln.
At that moment all I wanted to do was be the best dad I possible could be for Lincoln.
Externally, I was showing all the signs of a confident, excited, and joyful new dad.
Internally, I was a nervous and scared wreck who had no clue what he was doing.
Unfortunately, there is no training manual or guide to assist us in becoming a dad. How do I connect with my children? How do I consistently show up? How do I become a loving, engaging, and enthusiastic dad?
I had so many questions and didn’t know where to go for the answers. So like many dads, I learned on the fly, from my dad, other dads, and even actors who play a dad on TV or in movies (Scary!).
For a moment I was doing well on my journey, but like any journey, there is always twists and turns. And they would come in the form of losing a child, raising Lincoln on my own for awhile, and divorce.
I felt like an empty shell. I felt like a failure as a dad.
“Donnie!” “Donnie!” “You are good enough!” “You are good enough!
As my coach repeated herself over and over again and me repeating the words, I could feel my energy rise and my way of thinking change.
It would take a few more weeks for this to sink into my mind and heart. Once it did, I became obsessed with discovering what makes me tick and how I can not only improve myself but become the dad I wanted to be. I started by diving into what is called Energy Leadership. I would pick up numerous books on being a dad, a man, leadership, self-awareness, positive psychology, strengths, motivation, communication and anything else that peaked my interest and would help me grow.
I would go back to school and earn my master’s degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. I would also discover Conversational Intelligence (C-IQ), and the power conversations have on building trust.
During this time of self-discovery, my dad journey experienced a few more turns. First, by meeting a woman (Anna) that would flip the script on me and who I would eventually marry. Second, by gaining two crazy and fun step-sons, Jack and Aiden. Then finally, in the birth of my second son, Mason.
Now, society expects marriage and then having a kid. Instead, Anna and I had Mason first; later we got married. The crazy thing is that we found out Anna was pregnant only after a month of dating. Talk about a twist in my journey!
As my journey as a dad and myself discovery continued, something happened.
My mind became consumed with the following thoughts…
What if there was a place where dads could learn how they are showing up. A place where they could have the opportunity to evolve into the dads they want to be: loving, fun, engaging, energetic, confident, and trusting. A place where they could have the support of other dads. A place where I could share all that I have learned and still learning. A place where they could find a dedicated dad coach for one of the most essential roles in their life.
Then something amazing happened. I started to look back on my journey as a dad, and I discovered something about being a dad. As my circumstances or situations changed, there was something that always remained constant. And that was being a dad.
From this grew the idea of Everdad!
A community where dads can obtain the knowledge, skills, and abilities to evolve. A place where dads can get the support and assistance in unlocking their potential, no matter where they are in their journey so that they can enjoy and experience life’s rewards as a dad.
Do you start fresh every morning, fail, then vow to begin again with the same old strategy? Then I encourage you to join the Everdad Trive and take action for the betterment of you and those in your life.
Lesson Learned: No matter your circumstances you have a choice on how you show up. You can play the victim, or you can make the choice to move yourself forward.
Action: Reflect and answer the following questions
How are you showing up?
How would your kids, spouse/partner, friend or anyone else in your life say how you are showing up? (Challenge – Ask them!)
What impact are you having on your loved ones by the way you are showing up?
What is one thing you can change right now that would help you in showing up in your life?
What are you willing to do today to start being the dad you want to be?
If you haven’t booked your FREE 1:1 Dad Strategy Session do so here!
Donnie Boroff, M.A., CPC, ELI-MP, C-IQ is a father of four boys and husband with a passion for dads. A Dad Coach and founder of Everdad. With a Master’s Degree in Industrial Organizational Psychology along with being a Certified Professional Coach, Energy Leadership Index Master Practitioner, and Certified in Conversational Intelligence, he assists dads in exploring and discovering how they are showing up in their children’s lives.