A few days ago Tennis legend Andre Agassi got inducted to the Tennis Hall of Fame. I dont care much for tennis but i always know when all the major championships are being played.
However, as Andre accepted the honour he made a very impressive and well thought out speech. What particularly impressed me was the way he spoke about his fathers impact on his life. I am a firm believer in the power of affirming your children through encouragment and positive words , especially since i had the priviledge of being raised by exceptional parents.
Andre aged 6 with his father courtesy www.smh.com.au
Please find below excerpts of his speech:
Dad, when I was five, you told me to win Wimbledon; when I was seven, you told me to win all of the four Grand Slams; and more times that I can remember you told me to get into the Hall of Fame. And when I was 29, I don’t know if you remember this, you told me to marry Steffi Graf. Best order you ever gave me. So Dad, please don’t ever stop telling me what to do http://www.worldtennismagazine.com/archives/4738
wow! talk about a great dad! Imagine if his father had said “andre you know what? your a loser… you will never amount to anything…your such a lousy tennis player” ..he may still have made it to the top inspite of all the negativity but most probably not.
Parenting is one of the toughest and most rewarding jobs on the planet! Its not something any of us should take lightly as an individuals destiny can be marred by a bad parent. think about the kids in the projects, do you know that statistic show that children who are raised without a father are more likely to end up behind bars?
Look at Oprah…one of the most succesful women on earth, if not for her father who she lived with and who encouraged her passion for eductaion she may not be a household name today.
Even though Emmanuel Agassi has been at various times been described as having a violent nature, and was in no way the perfect father, he seems to have been a good dad to his son.
Yes, mothers are the primary caregivers and many mums have raised exceptional kids on their own but Fathers you need to be around to also motivate your kids and instruct them in the right way like Andre’s father.
** Note that all I have written about Andre’s father is entirely based upon Andre’s speech.