Pair of glass cups

Lessons from Dad


This Father’s Day, instead of getting caught up in all the commercialism, I’m hoping to get caught up in some good conversations. Sometimes I think we rush through life without taking the time to think about something outside of this week, month or year. I’d like to advocate for a chance to learn some real-life lessons from your dad. Instead of a cheeky card or a new shirt, how about asking your dad about the best life lessons he’s learned? Or what he really wants out of life for you? Here are 10 starter questions to help your Father’s Day be the best one yet.

  1. Was there a particular childhood memory that had a big impact on your life? Oftentimes adversity can open our eyes to what is most important. As the saying goes, we learn more from our losses than from our victories. These lessons are often timeless and should be passed from generation to generation.
  2. What were the moments that solidified your parents’ advice to you? Right or wrong, our parents had an impact on our lives. We derive much of who we are as adults either imitating or deviating from who our parents were. Hearing these stories can help us identify the good things we need to carry on.
  3. Do you have a favorite memory as a parent that made you proud? Children crave the admiration of adults. Often as parents, we tend to understate why we are proud of our children’s accomplishments. This will help your dad talk about the good ol’ days and remind us to tell our own kids how proud we are of them.
  4. What does being a good American citizen look like? Civic responsibility is often lost in the bluster of today’s politics and social discourse. However, it is important to teach the next generation the privileges we take for granted, and why those are important to uphold for future generations.
  5. What values do you structure your life around? What we value shapes who we are. The answer to this question may tell you more about who your father is than any other question.
  6. How has faith affected you throughout your lifetime? We all believe in something and that impacts how we live our lives.
  7. What do you think a balanced life looks like? No one has perfected the work/life balance. There are great lessons to be learned here.
  8. What do you think is the most important aspect of parenting? Hindsight is 20/20. Maybe your father wished he had done this instead of that. Appreciate that their opinions come from a place of experience and perspective that is greater than your own.
  9. Is a legacy important? What will I be remembered for when I am gone? Introspection is key in understanding ourselves, and this question will drive a great conversation.
  10. What’s your biggest advice for marriage? This may be a painful question depending on certain circumstances. Take what he says with a grain of salt, but don’t discount his opinion if it is different than your own.

Being present is something that has come up to the forefront of my life in the last few years. With so much technology involved in our lives these days it’s so easy to digest life in shallow terms. But being intentional with leading a conversation to a deeper level will have lasting effects that you will remember far into the future.

photo of Katelyn Nixon
Written By Katelyn Nixon
Army Spouse

Katelyn has been a military spouse for six years and enjoys the adventurous lifestyle. To share her experiences with other spouses, she started a blog in 2018.

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