Being a parent is one of the most difficult jobs there is. I think that all of us parents are often way too hard on ourselves and we don’t always think about the things we are doing well. I think we focus on how we are falling short, or how we don’t have enough time, and we worry about the job we’re doing raising our kids. The point of this post is not to brag about myself or my skills as a dad, but rather, I want to use this to encourage other moms and dads to think about the ways that they are doing a good job as a parent, to think about the things they know they are doing well and to celebrate them rather than focusing on the negative. I hope that any of you parents out there reading this take the time to do as I did and write out a list of reasons why you know you are a good mom or dad.

I know I’m a good dad because I love my son and daughter with all my heart…and I try to give them my full attention at all times when I am home and spending time with them.

I know I’m a good dad because I set boundaries for my son and give him appropriate consequences and I stick to what I’ve told him I’m going to do. I try really hard to be consistent with these consequences and I feel like his behavior and actions show that this is working.

I know I’m a good dad because my son and daughter are happy to see me come home. My son wants to play and my daughter smiles when she sees me after I’ve been away. I can tell they love me and want to spend time with me.

I know I’m a good dad because I work very hard to be on the same page as my wife and make sure not to undermine her authority. The kids see us as equals in the house and know they can’t play one of us off of the other. I try very hard to show both of my kids what being a good husband and partner looks like.

I know I’m a good dad because I take time to talk with other dads about being a father. I ask for their advice and try to share some of my own because I know being a dad is a tough gig. I believe the more I talk with other dads about fatherhood, the better father I become to my own kids.

I know I’m a good dad because I don’t make the kids the absolute center of everything in our family world. My son knows he has to wait his turn to talk and he knows that mommy and daddy need time away for dates. My son knows that he is a part of our family, not the center of it, and that he needs to help out around the house and help support the other people in our family.

I know I’m a good dad because I know the importance of admitting when I’ve made a mistake or done something wrong. I apologize to my son often and am showing him how to own up to mistakes and seek forgiveness. I let him see that I’m human too and make sure he knows that I am not perfect.

I know I’m a good dad because I have not stopped trying to improve myself as a father and won’t rest because I think I’m doing a good job. Being a dad is hard work and I need to assess myself every day to see if I’m doing the best I can for my kids. I won’t stop working to be a better dad to my kids because I will never stop being their dad.

This is fatherhood…