100 things that made me America’s Dad

Townsend Russell
7 min readSep 13, 2021

#1 I had Sex. It is tough to be a Dad when you do not have a kid. Full credit due for invitro dads, for adoption dads, and stepdads. I am not trying to bash on anybody’s parade. I just did it the old-fashioned way. Had a lot of fun. It is a natural talent.

#2 I got my priorities in the right order. It is not about me anymore. Faith. Wife. Kids. Then me. My hobbies take a back seat. The gym became less important.

#3 I made my marriage a priority.

#4 I made sure I could financially provide. Check income. Track expenses. Budget.

#5 Financially prepared for the future. College. Retirement. Big Purchases. House. Cars. Etc.

#6 I made sure I had a Will.

#7 I made sure I had Life Insurance.

#8 I recognized that I am now a role model. I should at least act like it.

#9 I stayed optimistic about everything. Because pessimism sucks.

#10 Made sure Mom and Dad are on the same team.

#11 My discipline game was on point. Strong, Firm, Reasonable.

#12 I protected my family. From physical harm, spiritual harm, emotional harm, evil.

#13 I am thankful for everything. Where I was born. The people I have met. That guy that gave me an idea. The guy that said I couldn’t. The ones that said I could. To authors. To haters. To supporters. Everything. Everyone.

#14 I provide. A roof, food, and water. Stable home. Education. Unconditional love. Discipline. Consequences.

#15 Not rigid. I stay flexible. Not only in the sack. I’m not going to be rigid in my parenting. Times change. Kids have different personalities. I adjust accordingly.

#16 I shouldered the responsibility. And the blame. All of it. I can handle it.

#17 I set the tone at home. It’s what a leader does.

#18 Made sure our family name means something in our community. How we carry ourselves and how we treat others.

#19 A good home life was more important than faking it on social media.

#20 I made sure our house was a home.

#21 I kicked ass at work. I tried to be the best. Because that is how you succeed.

#22 I prepare my kids for the real world. Age appropriately, of course.

#23 My values and morals are firm. I do not compromise on those.

#24 I put in the effort. Because this is too important to wing it.

#25 I became good at relationships. It’s amazing what being nice, reliable, and offering help will do for your reputation.

#26 Humbled myself because I realized my ego will be my downfall.

#27 Perspective was everything. I learned to put myself in other people’s shoes.

#28 Taught my kids about guns. If I am going to have them, we might as well make sure safety is taught and they do not become forbidden fruit.

#29 I reassessed who I hung out with. I wanted to elevate myself not be held back.

#30 This is who I took advice from. People who actually did what I wanted to do. Good Dads. Good businessmen who built from scratch.

#31 Time. Quality and quantity. I recognized its importance in raising a family. Time is everything.

#32 Let my kids be them. Not what I wish I had been. My Values and morals are firm but I let their personalities and talents bloom.

#33 I read books to my kids. Good bonding. Good teaching moments.

#34 I Play with my kids. Both when it was fun as they get older and when it was boring when they just laid there.

#35 I remain Calm under pressure. Cool heads prevail over emotional drama queens.

#36 I build up my kids’ confidence. Because self-esteem does not result from being crushed all the time.

#37 I give them frequent reality checks. If I’m going to be humbled…so will they. This isn’t a fairy tale.

#38 Created a stable home environment. Rules, routine, predictability.

#39 Realized how much these kids see and absorb…..and modified my behavior.

#40 I hated negativity. Still do.

#41 Vices — not for me. I can say no. I can handle stress. Drugs, alcohol, gambling, porn, tobacco….I make sure my mind is more powerful than temptation.

#42 My secret formula. Hard work + Good Decisions + Faith =Success

#43 Failing does not bother me. In fact, it oddly is fun for me.

#44 Plowed thru fears. Pushed forward. No, what-ifs.

#45 Live without regret. I do not want to be 90 wishing I had been a better dad or tried to make something of myself.

#46 Not afraid to make the unpopular decision because I know it is the right decision.

#47 I do not get painted into corners. If A and B are the only options. I find or create an option C.

#48 I am not afraid to get weird and step outside my comfort zone.

#49 I did not say the things I wanted to say when I was angry. Because I knew I would regret it and once those things are said they never really get taken back.

#50 Loved taking those scary leaps toward opportunities.

#51 Gave my kids independence and freedom as they earned it.

#52 I am not a helicopter dad. But I do verify the trust and freedoms I have allowed are worthy.

#53 Comparison was motivation, not depression. I was never envious, just inspired.

#54 Our house had RULES. Because structure is important.

#55 I refused to sacrifice my family to excel in my career.

#56 I let my kids fail…. a lot.

#57 Became okay with asking for help…. letting go of that ego thing.

#58 Actions were more important than words…. anybody can say the words.

#59 I didn’t make excuses, I just got things done.

#60 Willingness to do what others would not. I found there is much value in doing the things others find demeaning or too hard.

$61 I found the best balance is balancing over longer periods of time. Not day to day or even weekly. More seasonal.

#62 I gave myself reality checks. Check that ego.

#63 I realized how good I have it. And I did my best to soak in that contentment.

#64 Recognized my kids’ genetics and focused on their talents, skills, and personalities.

#65 Respect is important. Earning it & Giving it.

#66 Bravery is important. Super important. Stand up for what I genuinely believe in.

#67 Raising my kids to be fully functional adults.

#68 I used short-term tactics with long-term visions.

#69 Pushed my kids to be better, braver, stronger.

#70 Teach my kids everything I can about life, so they are prepared when they enter the real world without me.

#71 Recognized how important dads’ role is in the family.

#72 I document a lot. It’s great for memories. Reflection. Appreciation.

#73 I controlled my kids’ influences. What they see, experience, hear.

#74 Strong man- Kind heart.

#75 The secret to a good life is simply being happy.

#76 I do my best. Give my best. Because effort is huge!

#77 Realized my wife was insanely important to our life.

#78 I drive our family value home repeatedly. No one and done. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

#79 Started my own businesses giving us control of our lifestyle.

#80 Worked close to home because I hated the idea of traffic instead of family.

#81 Made big efforts to be incredibly involved in my kids’ lives. Even the not so fun things.

#82 We switched to homeschooling. More time. More freedom. More control of influences.

#83 Knew my priorities in life. Faith. Family. Work. Friends.

#84 Budgeting was a huge deal. Both of us stayed involved and adhered to it. Neither of us wasted our hard-earned money.

#85 I did not borrow money. No partners. No inheritance. All on my own. No scapegoats. No crutches.

#86 Willing to do unpopular things and go against the grain. Because going along with crowds seems so…. basic.

#87 Cared more about building a net worth than impressing people.

#88 Despite mediocre grammar skills I enjoy writing out my thoughts. Creates clarity and conviction!

#89 Never traveled as a kid, Limited travel as an adult= Strong desire to travel!

#90 Sold a valuable business to the right company at the right time. Luck helps. Luck seems to happen to people who work really hard and do the right things.

#91 Realized having cash and no debt gives you options and freedom and tremendous peace of mind.

#92 Set huge, big goals. Never achieved them totally. But when I came up short, I still did great!

#93 Never afraid of work…even hard work, willing to outwork everyone.

#94 My hobby was my family and work. I excelled at the 2 things I focused most on.

#95 Leaned heavily on my Faith. Put my worries, struggles, anxieties on shoulders bigger than mine.

#96 I knew I did not want to replicate the bad parts of my father …but I did want to replicate the good parts.

#97 Married a girl with the same values and morals as me. With similar goals. With similar ethics. With the same determination to work through bad times and build a good life.

#98 Looked at my ancestry and wanted to become a legend in my family. I wanted our name to really mean something.

#99 Lived a life that if someone wants to dig into it there is nothing to find. Squeaky clean.

#100 Wrote down our family values. This became our compass and roadmap.

100% Dad is currently on tour traveling the country promoting the 100% Dad brand. Townsend Russell is the Founder and Personality for 100% Dad. Townsend has been on the tour for over 15 months with his family with plans to continue until January 2023. Townsend sold his businesses and retired in 2019 and has been building 100% Dad and creating insane memories with his family along the way.

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