There comes a point in every parent’s life when it hits you that you aren’t just raising babies, but you have created a person. For me, I think it was when my oldest son received the Conductor (student) of the Year Award at school. Of course, having him recognized by a panel of teachers as being bright, responsible and courteous was one of the proudest moments his dad and I have had. But what is as important about him winning is what he did before he won.
I had been called out of town for a family emergency, and he and his brother were with a family friend. The day before the ceremony, without anyone telling him and no inkling of how it would turn out, he picked out his best pair of pants, his nicest shirt, dress shoes and a clip-on tie. He looked like a winner before he’d won. And when they called his name, he was prepared.
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If he’d learned this lesson from me without me realizing I taught him, what other unknown examples have I set, good or bad?
It got me thinking about my own childhood, the lessons I learned from my dad and how they ultimately shaped me into the woman that I have become. I still tease him today about an unflattering comment he made about me years ago that he, of course, intended as a compliment. But the fact that I still remember it is a reminder to me as a parent that words and actions, no matter how major or minor, can have a lasting impact.
My parents weren’t perfect, and neither are we. In the end, all we can do is to try and make certain that we do more good than bad. If that happens, even when we’re not around, out chilren will be much more likely to draw a positive word of encouragement from their memory bank than something hurtful that will tear them down.
My father is not an overly emotional guy and often doesn’t have many words. But I realize now that most of what I learned from him was less about what he said and more about watching how he lived his life.
Thanks, Daddy, for more good lessons than bad.
Here are his top 10:
10. Your work ethic and character will set you apart from the crowd.
9. Admire people who are not only good at what they do, but who love doing it.
8. Respect your roots.
7. Never waste anything.
6. Anticipate what could go wrong – something always goes wrong – and try to prevent it from happening. If it happens anyway, learn from it.
5. There’s only one way to do things: The right way.
4. Listen to people. Listen to their stories. Listen deeply. That’s how you learn things.
3. Showing love and concern is more important than talking about it.
2. Many people deserve second chances, even if you have to give them a second chance more than once.
1. You are beautiful and loved.
Nikki Woods is senior producer of “The Tom Joyner Morning Show.” The author of “Easier Said Than Done,” the Dallas-based Woods is currently working on her second and third novels. You can friend her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter: @nikkiwoods.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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