I wanted to make a quick father’s day post to remind myself for one of the main reasons I want to achieve financial independence, and that is for my children.
As I reflect back on my childhood, I remember my parents working during many of my childhood events. They did make it to the occasional band concert and to graduations, but they never saw me run in a track meet and rarely were present for soccer games as a youth. They both worked full time and each had 1-2 part time jobs. I am glad that they were always willing to help pay for educational expenses through high school and emphasized the need for education and the lack of need for the latest toy or video game.
As I raise my kid (soon to be kids in 4 weeks!) I remind myself that being fortunate to have a well paying job and having financial freedom will allow me greater time with my children; if I make it a priority. Many times, I think we need that reminder as we get involved in our careers and advancement. I personally know that as an educator I do let work invade my life and often work off the clock. I am fortunate that I have a boss that sees this hard work and will give me the time off (when possible) to spend time with my family.
However, in the not so distant past, I have had other bosses that have been no where as supportive and knowing that I will soon have the financial means to just walk away if it because a choice between work and my family makes me happy.
As a mustachian, I hope to impart some of what I try to live and learn to my kids.
I hope to to teach them:
1. self sufficiency- there are plenty of things we can do ourselves that make us better people. Home improvement and repair projects- that is something I enjoyed doing with my father. Growing our own food, something that I enjoyed learning from both my parents.
2. interest in learning- it is important to encourage this natural curiosity. Right now every day is a new discovery for my son. I hope to continue this as he starts to develop his own interests.
3. exposure to diversity- By learning to do many things yourself, getting out into the actual world, and trying new things I hope to bring diversity to their lives and mine. In medicine, it is easy for your career to consume your life, and I want to open their eyes up to other activities and to other groups of people.
4. money and the opportunities it brings- I want them to understand that money allows you to buy freedom, and this freedom is what really brings you the opportunity to explore new things or you can use it to buy a bunch of plastic crap you don’t need. I hope to teach them that this tool if used correctly will give them many opportunities that others may not be fortunate enough to have.
5. Money is not worth anything if you don’t have others- Money can buy you a lot of crap, but it really does not mean anything if you become a slave to it and you give up the other experiences and relationships that are important to you. Financial independence is a goal, but it should not govern your life. It should guide you into deciding what and who is worth your time.
Well these are the major points that come to mind when I think reflect on being a father. Anyone else have any other thoughts they want to share?