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New Year, New You? Nah.

Ignore marketing campaigns demanding you re-invent yourself because the year changed. They prey on insecurity for profit and our wallets took enough of a beating over the holidays.

That kiddo that worships you only wants three things from you, and they’re free. They want your time.  Your full attention.  And for as long as they can get it. 

Ten years ago, I had a fresh face and a decent forty yard dash.  Now, I’m the greying steady locker room presence ready to impart wisdom to you rookies, free of charge.  Here’s my playbook.

Firstly, make time in that Outlook calendar for your kids. During the week, we all have rough days. When you get home, that kid has been bursting with excitement waiting to see you, and deserves that same energy back. Full attention at dinner, play on the floor, read a story at bedtime. If you can give ninety minutes to TPS reports, you can give the same after work to your kids. On the weekends, start a tradition. Free cookies at Farm Boy. Western Fair Farmers Market. Indoor playgrounds. Hiking our local trails. Wandering Home Depot teaching them about tools.  All time is quality time. 

Secondly, give them your full attention.  Put your phone on DND. Instagram and group chats will be there when you “drop kids off at the pool”. Your kids won’t always be there wanting your full attention though. I’ve built some epic coffee creamer towers at diners. The rest of life can wait an hour.

Thirdly, be around for as long as possible. Get enough sleep. Manage stress. Food is fuel, not stress relief. Move your body. See your doctor once a year. My dad was a drinking and smoking diabetic and I don’t remember playing with him. He died at 65. My kids know I will always get them in playground tag and that something bad froze over if they beat me on the basketball court. I am intentional about making time for my health.

Being an elite dad is in all of us for 2024. Just make it a priority. It’s free.


Jeremy McCall is a married father of 3, a social services case manager, and known as “The Dadfather”, being the founder and Past President of Dad Club London.


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