BUSINESS LESSONS FROM MY CHILDREN – MONOTONY, LOVE, THOUGHT & ACTION.
October 6th, 2016
I was recently asked to do a radio interview by a good friend of mine – Kojo Baffoe. He’s recently become a radio show host on Kaya Fm and he’s in a fortunate position to have a media platform that allows him the space and latitude to explore Life with Kojo Baffoe. The subject of the interview was different from many interviews that I have done before, but at the same time, it was very close to my heart. Although the interview explored many aspects of fatherhood, the overarching question was – “What have my children taught me and how does that apply to business?”.
The answer is relatively simple.
Discipline in monotony – My natural character is a spontaneous one that shudders at the thought of pattern or repetition. For most of my adult life, as soon as I felt that things were beginning to get predictable, I would do my best to switch it up or do things differently. Recently a cousin of mine told me that as a father, it is part of a journey to learn how to “manage monotony”. In so doing, you create the right environment for your children. Kids by their very nature require predictability to ensure some level of stability.
Discipline in love – To be honest, I used to be a person that carries grudges. It takes the might of a mountain to wrong me, but If wronged by someone, it took a lot to make it right. My children have taught me how to seal indiscretion with love. Not that there is no reprimand or consequence, but that it needs to coming from a loving place – all the time. It has helped me to diffuse grudges and although I have not mastered it – love is a disciplined daily expression of your hearts condition.
Discipline in thought – Overall, what I spend my time thinking about has not changed much, but my thoughts are more directed and focused. It’s like my children sharpened my resolved and tuned my ambition. All of a sudden your responsibility is broader than your own selfish goals. All of a sudden you have dependent’s, it is scary, but it is an honor to serve them. Servant leaders require clear, impactful thought in the way they approach their context.
Discipline in action – I have to be able to provide for and to lead both my children. It’s important to fully comprehend and embrace the fact that whether I like it or not, I will be an important reference for them growing up and therefore my actions should uphold that.
So, how is it that I have learnt all this from my children?
I have watched my son do the same thing over and over again – with the same effort, the same determination and even though it is exactly the same thing over and over again, somehow he derives joy from it every time.
It was a liberating realization that they love me not because of what I do or don’t do, but simply because of who I am to them.
Randomly my son tells me he loves me or that my wife is beautiful or that his sister is gorgeous. His thoughts are pure and directed. They are honest and unbridled.
My son is in a phase of his life where he is learning so much – riding bikes, frying eggs, brushing teeth. And I see him sometimes refusing help as he has resolved that he is big enough to get it done. He tries every day and has now adopted the mantra – practice makes perfect.
Content, inspired & energized.