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Happy Saturday! With Father’s Day tomorrow, I just wanted to share a little bit about my dad and how thankful I am for him. I wouldn’t be an entrepreneur today without his impact in my life and the lessons he taught me about hard work and entrepreneurship.
I often share my birthday with Father’s Day and I am thankful I do. I think the day I was born was actually on Father’s Day that year (I’d have to fact check that with my mom). But both are special days and I love my dad so much. So, in honor of Father’s Day, I wanted to share a bit of my story, give you a little behind the scenes look into Ashley June.
I’ve talked about this before, so you might already know, but I grew up working at my dad’s auto body shop. He was a teacher at a local community college prior to that, and we were in a position where we didn’t have much money. I was qualifying for free lunch at school, and we just weren’t thriving as a family. That spurred my dad into action, to take a risk and start a business.
He had followed all the steps that other people thought he should, he went to college even though it wasn’t really what he was into. He’s a gear head, he loves working with his hands; not sitting, reading, taking notes in college classes. But, he graduated college so he could get a good job like others wanted him to. He actually started fixing cars as a teenager, but his mother didn’t like that, she wanted him to go to college. It’s interesting that he didn’t do anything with his degree, but ended up building a business where he was able to do what he loved, support his family, and wasn’t going to be financially stuck for the rest of his life.
Around that same time when he started his auto body business, my parents had a huge positive turnaround in their marriage. So, I think this story is the epitome of being where God has called you. When you try to do something that you’re not uniquely suited for, you’re not necessarily going to thrive; that may be financially, spiritually, or as a family. So, I think it’s something to be cognizant of – what does God want to do in you and in your life versus what others want you to do.
TAKE THE RISK
One of the first lessons my dad taught me through his journey of entrepreneurship was to take the risk. He saw that his family wasn’t getting what they needed and he took action to change it. There will be months that are scary and things that throw you for a loop; you’re going to have to make business decisions and modify things. You’ll get stressed about the ups and downs.
I remember every summer, my dad would be so stressed about work slowing down and people not coming in to get their cars fixed as often. But then it started to happen every single year around the same time. So, if you can recognize and plan for the cyclical nature and not be stressed out because you’re expecting it, you will have a lot more peace and security. So, I remember my mom telling him every summer that it would be ok, it happens every year and it will pick back up.
I’m so thankful though that I had a dad who took the risk. And he’s still investing in land and commercial properties, and building and creating. I don’t think he’ll ever truly retire. He’s just going to stay moving for the rest of his life.
ALWAYS DO THE RIGHT THING
The second biggest thing he taught me was to always do the right thing, in business & in life. My dad isn’t perfect by any means, but I always saw him do the right thing at the end of the day. And many times, in the business world, it’s like “no good deed goes unpunished.” This is when you do the right thing and people still do wrong to you.
I appreciate that even after that type of scenario happened many times to my dad, he continued to do the right thing. He’s been so generous and kind to people. He does this because he doesn’t want to carry the weight of doing wrong to people, and he doesn’t want to disappoint God in that way.
DO IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME
I also remember from my upbringing, that my dad taught us to do things right the first time. When it came to washing dishes, he had a very specific way he wanted us to do it. We were taught to let them soak, wipe them off, and then put them in the dishwasher. Now, as an adult, I don’t do it that way all the time. So, I sometimes have to deal with my dishwasher getting clogged because I’m going for the faster way. But, if I just did it right the first time, like my dad taught me, life would be so much easier! 😆
My dad is such an example of doing things the right way. He is constantly maintaining things, taking care of his property and other things. He’s very consistent in that way, he never avoids hard work, he just gets it done right the first time. This is such a huge lesson for entrepreneurship, and I’m so thankful for his example.
WORK HARD SO YOU CAN PLAY HARD
The last thing I want to highlight that my dad taught me is to work hard so I can play hard. I remember growing up that he did work a lot, probably too much. He always has to be working on something, or tinkering with something. So, I remember that during the week, he would work hard and then on the weekends, he was out having fun.
He would go snowmobiling, boating, and golfing. He would help coach our sports; always having an outlet where he was able to play. He’s totally a kid at heart and is always having fun.
I’m so thankful that he taught us how to play and that when you work hard, you earn fun. I think I’ve lost sight of that somewhat in the last several years, just having babies so quickly. But I’m trying to make more time for fun in my life. Life should be fun, we need to have joy and I’m grateful my dad showed me that.
Well, those are my thoughts about my dad, and I’m so grateful for him and all that he taught me. I thank God that he gave me my dad. I do know that not everyone has a father like that and Father’s Day can be hard for some. But the beautiful thing is that even if our earthly fathers are not showing up, Father’s Day is a day to celebrate our Creator, our Heavenly Father as well.
I just pray that everyone can have peace on this day, that you will cherish your dads. Whether it’s your Abba Father or your earthly father, I just pray that you can cherish that relationship.
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Alright, have a great rest of your weekend celebrating all the dads in your life!
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