In the famed 1976 film Rocky, written by and starring Sylvester Stallone, Rocky Balboa set the example for facing the odds and overcoming them. Set up to fight the undefeated heavyweight champion Apollo Creed, Rocky poured himself into preparing for the fight and displayed unfailing courage. Throughout his journey of mental and physical preparation, Rocky learned a lot and fathers can look to the lessons Rocky learned for ways to be a better father.
Develop their Character
In one scene of the film, Rocky walked a little girl home from a bad part of town and on the way had a little life lesson to share with her. Rocky told her, “You hang out with nice people, you get nice friends, understand, you hang out with smart people, you get smart.” Your children’s friends play a part in developing the character of your child. Encourage relationships with good friends and positive influences in their life.
Set the Example
One of the things that Rocky really wanted to prove from the fight with Apollo Creed was that he was not a bum. Be a role model for your child and someone that they can look up to. Your children need an example to follow.
Be There and Support Them
Your kids need you and your support. Let them know that you are there when they need you. Give them a helping hand and put them back into the ring.
While preparing for the big fight, Rocky remarks “I’ll have to do the best I can.” Encourage your children to do their best and to pursue their dreams. Be the one to cheer them on at the big events in their life.
Believe in Them
Everyone needs someone to believe in them, especially your kids. Rocky’s girlfriend Adrian was his support system and she believed in him. If no one believes in you, then it can be hard to believe in yourself.
Remind Them of Their Blessings
Discontentment can easily arise in today’s materialistic world. As Rocky said, “You may think you have nothing, but it’s not true.” When your children beg you for a new toy, remind them of their blessings and what they already have.
Keep Them Moving Forward
It is important for your kids to be living in the present and looking towards the future. Encourage them to keep moving forward and not to dwell on past mistakes or losses. In boxing if you stay focused on past fights, you will be sure to lose until you can let go and let the past fights teach you.
Prepare Them for Battle
There are several things that a boxer must do to train for a fight. They must stretch, train, and prepare mentally. Get your kids stretching their talents and grow in them. Train your kids to prepare them for life in areas such as academics, spiritual truth, and life skills. Also, it is crucial that your children be prepared mentally for life. They need to develop things like self-confidence, self-esteem, passion, and determination.
Plan for Victory
Talk to your kids about their future and makes plans. Teach them to go into things with the mindset to come out them with success. Before his fight with Apollo Creed, Rocky says, “I can't do it. I can't beat him.” Rocky did not plan for victory and did not receive it. His mistake teaches the lesson that if you enter into something without believing that you can accomplish it, then you will not.
Help Them Go the Distance
Before the big fight, Rocky tells Adrian, “All I wanna do is go the distance. Nobody's ever gone the distance with Creed, and if I can go that distance, you see, and that bell rings and I'm still standin', I'm gonna know for the first time in my life, see, that I weren't just another bum from the neighborhood.” In boxing, “going the distance” means fighting all of the rounds and not being knocked out. In the end, Rocky may not have won the fight, but he went the distance with Apollo Creed. Help your kids finish out things they start in life and be proud of themselves. Even when life may knock them down, help them get back up and push through it.