Those that read this blog regularly would be hard pressed to accuse me of not being an advocate of creative expression.
Having written about passionate pursuits for our kids and ourselves (as dads), I believe that fathers play a vital role here.
Not only do we provide practical guidance by leading them towards their dreams, but we also guide them by how we follow ours as well.
However, the rub comes when our dreams begin to edge out our attention to family…leading us to a strange kind of absorption.
Suddenly we find that our focus is “the pursuit”.
Unfortunately, the higher calling of being a husband and a dad takes a backseat to “our” dreams.
So, what do I suggest?
I say that we become a little more slacker’ish.
A Snapshot of Slackerdom
As is the case with everything I write, I try to actually practice my own advice.
For instance, the fact that this is only the second time that I have posted this month isn’t just a coincidence.
While my decision wasn’t specific to an exact quota, I decided to allow my pursuits to bend to those of my family. In short, I accepted that being a slacker in my writing was okay…and often necessary.
I would like to say that it’s been easy.
Unfortunately, my frustration over a more complicated life has gotten the better of me at times. Apparently fatherhood doesn’t suffer fools…or those that like a nice light schedule.
But, instead of succumbing to my “mad-dad” persona, I have faced the reality that my writing must take a back seat. With God and family being a priority in my life…this has to be case.
In all honesty, the twisting of our priorities is normally what gets us bent to begin with.
How to Become a Slacker
Surprisingly, the road to becoming a slacker is quite difficult…depending on your drive I suppose.
Of course, this fact only pertains to things that we actually care about. It’s much easier to shirk off yard work or avoid cleaning that shower that seems to have fresh growth in the bottom of it.
But, it’s altogether different to deny yourself of something that you find meaningful and fulfilling.
So, where do you need to become less diligent?
- Right off the bat you need to take an assessment of your interaction with your family. Do you find yourself with very little patience when you are doing things together? Chances are that thing you wish were doing is the thing you need to kick in the teeth the most.
- Maybe it’s sports…playing or watching.
- Maybe you love tinkering with that old car or working in the yard (although I think you may need a psychological intervention if it’s the latter).
- It could be that you live for your work.
- It’s possible that your interest lies in music or in some other artistic medium.
- Maybe your commitments at church are invigorating and you’re constantly drawn back there.
- Maybe you long to be on the lake fishing with friends.
- It might be that you find volunteering the best way to spend your time.
- Maybe you long to travel and a family tends to hinder that.
- Maybe you just like being alone.
It’s a bitter taste when you find out that your “thing” is getting in the way of what really matters.
You can try to rationalize it all you want, but if your passion or pursuit is knocking you down as a dad…you need to set it straight.
Lord knows I’ve tried every trick in the book to get what “I” want.
Maybe now we need to focus on what “they” need.
How are you doing in this area?
Are you kicking butt…or are you the one getting kicked?
Give me your two cents. There will undoubtedly be others that will benefit from your experiences.