My dad played a huge role in teaching me valuable life lessons that I still remember to this day. While moms can impart a ton of wisdom to their children, advice and lessons from dads are equally as important and play a vital role in a child’s development. Even from a young age children learn things from their dad that will shape them as they grow into adolescents and adults.

1. Time
Dads show their children how to spend their time and how to make the time they give to other people valuable. If dads spend all their time as work and never take a moment to play or listen to their children, kids start to believe that not only is time not important, but that other people and especially themselves are not worthy of giving time to. However, when dads choose to take time to listen and bond with their children, kids learn how to value quality time and appreciate its worth. Dads who play games with their children and take precious time out of their day to engage in bonding activities build up their children’s self-worth and confidence.

2. Guidance
A father’s guidance can transform a child’s life and shape them into caring, responsible adults. Many of the choices I’ve made throughout my life have come from my dad’s advice and guidance that he imparted very early on. He probably doesn’t even know how much he influenced me, but I appreciate the time he took to actually sit me down and tell me about his own life choices and the lessons he learned. A father’s expectations and even punishments for breaking rules and making poor choices help instill values in a child’s life that will last forever.

3. Encouragement
Children are not born selfless souls that try to help and encourage others. It would be nice if that were so, but it’s not. When dads encourage their children, they teach them several things. One is that they have someone on their side that is proud of their accomplishments and wants to see them succeed. The second thing is that people want encouragement and support from someone who cares, and that support can make all the difference. Encouragement also builds self-worth and teaches children to be gracious and supportive of other people.

4. Protection
Mothers can be fiercely protective of their children, but a dad’s protection is somehow different. Just ask any kids who’s ever been in an argument that started with “I bet my dad could…” Kids just automatically equate their fathers with strength and power which shields them from threats. As kids grow up, they learn more about the power of protection and how to be appropriately protective of their own friends and family members.