What does it mean to be a dad? The art of fatherhood is evolving as society and the traditional family changes. With these positive parenting tips, dads can help their children build confidence and self-esteem, and in turn, learn how to be an engaged, supportive, and loving father to their children. Current research reveals that warm accepting fathers tend to have children with higher self-esteem. An affectionate and nurturing father-child relationship furthers the development of childrens achievement, peer popularity and personal adjustment. Loving fathers, who provide reasonable, firm guidance, without arbitrarily imposing their will, help to promote competence in children.

Here’s our 7 tips for dads

1. Focus on giving hands-on help with the practical things such as taking turns to settle the baby at night and let her know she has your emotional support too. Take on some chores you wouldn’t usually do, without waiting for her to ask you – do the laundry or cook dinner, it doesn’t have to be fancy, just on the plate is good enough.

2. Seek professional help for you or your partner if either of you feel anxious or depressed.

3. Ask for help from family and friends, don’t wait for them to offer – they can pick up some shopping, baby-sit, or cook a meal – simple things, they all help.

4. Try and make her feel valued for the things she does manage to do – even if it’s not very much by her usual standards and you feel she is not noticing your own efforts. It’s really important that she gets positive feedback – from you.

5. Share your own concerns and discuss feelings in a constructive way: effective communication is the key.

6. Stay active. Remember to take time to exercise or play sport where you can release pent up energy, without staying away from home for too long.

7. Take your partner out on a regular basis – with or without the children.