Two Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Dad

Two Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Dad

Don’t make getting a Father’s Day gift harder than it really is. Your Dad only cares about you giving him one thing.

 

  • It’s your greatest asset.
  • It’s sabotaged every single day by unimportant things.
  • It’s always there when you need it and then gone in the end.

 

Give your Dad the gift of your time.

Your INTENTIONAL time is all he really cares about. It is the greatest gift you can give him. He has less of it with you now than he used to. 

It’s something I wish I still had the opportunity to give to my Dad.

 The good news for you is that you can create intentional time two different ways.

 

Two Ways To Give Your Intentional Time:

1) Direct: Physically In The Presence Of One Another

This can be the best type of quality time with your Dad.

 

  • Laughing together and reminiscing on old stories.
  • Experiencing something new with your Dad by your side.
  • Doing his favorite thing and acting like you enjoy it just for him ;).

 

I’ve discovered one major challenge with this type of “quality time”. You can’t control how “in the moment” the other person is. We live in a distraction filled world and it is easy for others to get sucked “out of the moment”.

Your Dad can't help himself. Scrolling through InstaFace is really cool and entertaining.

Result: Intentional time you wanted to spend is compromised and wasted by those distractions.

 

2) Indirect: Intentional Time Thinking About Your Dad

It’s really simple. When we give a relationship intentional time, our love and appreciation grows for that person. Our relationship is enhanced because of the time we spend thinking about them.

 We rarely think of this as an option. We hardly give ourselves the margin to let it be an option.

 Ask yourself these questions:

 

  •  When is the last time you thought about the things your Dad did for you growing up?
  •  What did he teach you that you have forgotten to thank him for?
  •  How many times has he been there for you when life got hard?
  •  What character traits do you admire about him?
  •  What are you excited about for him?

 

 I’d bet you $1.27 that the time you spent answering these questions, would provide more intentionality than time spent together while you and him were snapfacing your friends. 

 

Be Intentional:

Both direct and indirect time spent together can be transformative in the connection you feel with your Dad. I beg you this year to be intentional with the time you have. The clock is literally ticking as you read these words.

When it comes to investing your time indirectly it’s important you do it efficiently. The MeaningFull Books writing guides are helping people multiply how impactful their intentional time can be. 

The words they are writing are connecting deeper and closer to the heart than they could've ever imagined. 

Pages with words full of meaning. 

A structure and process that tells the story of the relationship you have with your Dad.  

 Most importantly, the intentional words in the book live on as reminders to your Dad. 

Give you Dad the gift of your intentional time. Buy a MeaningFull Book and spend 60-90 minutes of the most quality time you could ever give him. 

 

(Guest Post) How I Told My Parents The Specific Reasons I Love & Appreciate Them

(Written by Justin Raby)

I've never been one who shares my feelings freely. I can be a pretty quiet guy. 

It’s not that I don’t have feelings. I just don’t always do a very good job of conveying them to other people. I've always figured that by being around my loved ones they would know how much they mean to me.  

One day I was reflecting on my relationship with my parents and I asked myself this question. 

Do they know specifically why I love and appreciate them? The definitive answer to that question was, no!

I acknowledged I didn't like this and pledged that I would try doing a better job at telling them. The chaos of life ensued and I was never really able to put those specifics into verbal or written words.

I found myself wanting to tell them but not really knowing how. 

Then, I heard about a company/concept one of my colleagues husbands had started.  It was called MeaningFull Books. I kept asking questions about how it worked and met with Connor over coffee to learn more about it.

He explained how the process would pull my thoughtful words out of me and help me spill them onto the page. At this point he had only released the significant other version of the book but had the rough framework of the parent/guardian book complete. 

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that this was the perfect opportunity for me to share with my parents those specific reasons I valued them. 

So I asked Connor If I could get access to the parent/guardian framework. He agreed, and I started writing. 

As I sat down to begin, it was almost too overwhelming to even know where to start. I thought there was no way I would be able to fill the journal even though the pages are very small. 

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Then I started sifting through the MeaningFull Books writing guides and applying them to my relationship with my parents. They gave me an easy way to arrange my thoughts, ideas, and memories and also made the transition through the pages seamless.

When I felt stuck on how to share a thought or memory, the writing guides gave me excellent examples to jog my memory and point me in the right direction.

What is so great about the writing guides is that they give you the structure and framework to write the journal but the thoughts and words are still 100% mine. The words are written in my voice from my heart. It's more than just filling in a blank. 
 

I'm relieved that this process helped me articulate and express specific reasons I love and appreciate them. The amazing thing is that the book continues to remind them of the things I admire every time they pick up the book. 

I am very grateful that MeaningFull Books allowed me to do what I wasn’t sure I was completely capable of doing on my own. The process of reflecting and writing the book was moving. It grew my relationship with my parents before I even gave them the book.

Multiply that feeling by 100 and that was what it felt like to see their reaction to my words. I'm just grateful for MeaningFull Books. 

Justin Raby

You can watch his parents reaction to their book here.

How Did MeaningFull Books Get Started?

Our Time With Loved Ones Is Finite. 

We all acknowledge the phrase above, yet we consistently fail to act upon it. We nod our heads with agreement and before the echo of those words have escaped the room we have moved on to the next task on our to-do list.

On December 28th, 2001 I woke up with a loving father. The next day I woke up trying to figure out why he was gone. I was now a fatherless 13 year-old that lost his Dad to a sudden heart attack. He was 46.

 

Some of you may have experienced the the heart sinking feeling of losing someone without notice. Having someone physically erased out of your life is hard. Having dozens of things you wish you could have told them makes it even harder.

Years after Dad passed I came across some notes he had taken during one of my junior football games. When I realized I was in possession of physical notes he had written about me I was overcome with emotion.

The tears welled up in my eyes. 

I think It was because it was the closest I had felt to him...

in a really long time.

There is a special presence to ink inscribed on a page. Photos and videos of loved ones are great but there is more connection tied to words that were physically etched onto a piece of paper.

Maybe some of you have experienced the closeness of words written by loved ones that have passed on.

And again in 2012 my brother had an old business card with my father’s handwriting on it.

He let me borrow it because my wife Megan had the writing scanned and engraved on a necklace for my mother.

On the back of the card it said “love you Cameron, Love Mike”. As a former collegiate football player I know I’m supposed to be tough, but on that night I sobbed.

I just kept looking at the words “Love Mike” and it felt like I could almost hear my Dad saying them.

This emotional experience changed me forever. Right there in my small apartment in Carbondale, Illinois I was reminded that people can be erased from our lives at any moment but their written words can carry on forever.

I made the decision to start writing more. I made the decision to give more time to my relationships and to encourage others to do the same.

  • I started a blog that would eventually fizzle out called project deeds.

  • I wrote notes to former Middle School and High School teachers thanking them for encouraging me on my journey.

  • I left post-it notes around the house that let my Mom know how much I appreciated her.

  • I encouraged people that were dieting with a handwritten note.

  • Coach Mike McElroy and I hand wrote 31 cards filled with encouragement and appreciation for every single high school football player we coached at Elverado-Trico

And Then...

I spent 7 months filling a journal for my fiance (now wife). I simply wrote about what we did that day and sprinkled in the reasons that I was grateful for her. I get emotional thinking about giving her that gift. She started flipping through the pages and was absolutely blown away.

 

She started crying happy tears when she read the pages about the time I asked her Dad and Brother if I could take her hand in marriage.

She laughed hysterically when she read the detailed pages about me checking into the ER to have an EKG done.

I was not able to tell the nurses that my stress was related to my upcoming proposal because my future wife would not leave the room.

The journal made her cry, laugh, and everything else in between.

It meant so much more to her than I could have ever imagined. 

Megan felt the same connection I did toward my Dad’s words on the page. The only difference is that my words were specifically directed at her and I got to be by her side to experience her reading them.

At the end of 2015, I made it my mission to replicate this experience for others. I started breaking down all the barriers that would prevent or discourage someone from putting pen to paper.

The idea kept evolving and evolving, but eventually I landed on guiding people through some questions that would help them fill a 16 page journal for someone they really care about. We launched MeaningFull Books in September of 2016.

Our first book helps a spouse or significant other fill a book for the one they love. Future books will include other relationships.

The journal itself is beautifully crafted with a walnut cover and rosewood inlay. This really gives the book a timeless feel and it took us 5 months to get the design elements just right. The aesthetics of a MeaningFull Book are appealing to the eye but they only scratch the surface of how this book can help you.

The process of writing this journal pulls you closer to the one you love. As you work through the writing guides you can’t help but become more connected to the person you are writing to. The guides make it easy for you to write down thought filled words that will really matter to your significant other.

A MeaningFull Book lights a fire inside the heart of the author and the recipient. A finished journal is a reminder of everything that is right about your relationship. It’s a testimony of your love told in your words and it will be passed on for generations.

I’m convinced MeaningFull Books is helping bring urgency to the words you feel, but might not always take the time to say. Those words matter more than you’ll ever know and I willing to do whatever it takes to help you ink them on the page. Make the decision to start writing today.

Every Word Counts!

This story was featured on the MarriageMore Blog.