Last year I jointed a coworking space in Valencia called Vortex. One of their members, who joined in the same week as me, is that Norwegian guy called Oyvind. He’s a nice guy with an interesting story, a maker attitude and an entrepreneurial spirit. Needless to say that I’m happy to surround myself with people like that and we started chatting regularly over lunch and coffee.
Fast forward a few months, and last week he mentioned the title of his published book – Electronics for kids.
Here was me always assuming that the book he talked about was some nerdy book about electronics and circuits that would make little sense to me due to its complicated terminology and advanced theories.
Turns out, he actually wrote an amazing book for kids (from the age of 12) to learn all about electricity, circuits, breadboards and the like.
Needless to say that I headed over to Amazon to buy the book the same afternoon that we had talked.
Well, my daughter is only 3 and the book is for kids of the age group 12+, but I thought with a little help of daddy that won’t be an issue.
And here lies the real point that I realised.
Playmobil, Duplo, Lego, train sets, sand castles, books about DIY projects with your kids as well as Oyvind’s book about Electronics for kids – they are the perfect excuse for dads to relive their youth.
By “reliving your youth” I don’t mean what you think I mean.
It’s actually about the mindset we had back then. About the freedom. About the hours you could spend imagining things. About the various projects you could work on, without worrying about them making any money. About building stuff with Lego, being creative, being carefree.
That’s sort of the thing we adults call hobbies.
They take a minor part in our lives because the major part as an adult is taking care of the family, the kids, the money and worrying about the future.
As kids (up to a certain age) it was the other way round. The majority of our time was spent on hobbies.
While I mostly enjoy what I’m doing in my life work-wise (I most likely wouldn’t do it otherwise!), I still often feel trapped and not too happy for extended periods of time about it.
Even if I really want to believe that I work on my company for the right reasons and because I like what I’m doing, it always comes with a bunch of tasks that I don’t particularly enjoy. The pressure to make money to tick all those adult boxes (family, wife, kids, future, …) adds to that.
Since my daughter now reached an age where we can have nice conversations and create plans together, I want to take this opportunity to work on more daddy-daughter projects with her. Not only to spend quality time with my daughter, but also for myself to relax, switch off and basically do the things I love. After all, the best parenting is when you do things that you like doing yourself as you bring more energy and enthusiasm to the project.
I also realised that in 2020 I want to create more challenges, uncomfortable moments and hobbies/projects for myself.
Only by doing these things I can grow as a person and also regain that youthfulness (i.e. mindset of being carefree, creative, disruptive) that I’m longing for.