Fatherhood by Max Jennings

Please introduce yourself: Name, what do you do & how many children you have.

Max Jennings, Co-founder of Hoop a free app that helps families find fun things to do with their kids. I have two young daughters.

How do you manage to juggle work and life balance as a father?

I’ve worked for myself most of my working life, so I thought this was second nature to me … that was until I had kids. Once you have kids, you need to move into another gear when it comes to planning your time or you’re going to feel overwhelmed all of the time.

I’m a fairly obsessive list-maker, so that tends to keep me on track at work. I try to stay focussed on the things that will make the biggest difference, and ignore anything that distracts from these goals. Keeping good lists also means I know exactly where to pick up when I’m back in the office, and never have to worry about remembering stuff – I have a terrible memory.

When I’m at home, this means I can more or less completely switch off my brain from work distractions and enjoy being at home with my family

What makes you, as a dad, happy?

If my kids are happy. I’m most happy when my kids are having fun. Nothing beats my kids laughing and smiling.

 

What is your favourite & least favourite thing about parenthood?

Favourite things – just hanging and joking around with my kids. It’s a cliché, but seeing and experiencing the world again through your children is pretty amazing. I particularly love it when we go somewhere new for the first time, and seeing how they explore it, and the crazy questions they ask.

Least favourite is easy. Lack of sleep. My youngest daughter loves to get up early! Me, less so.

If you were a cartoon character, who would you be?

Wylie Coyote – always chasing some wild idea.

I’m a dad and……?

Tell us something mummy doesn’t know, something that happened during a ‘dad on duty’ moment.

Ha ha, let’s just say I tend to have a slightly more cavalier approach than my wife to the kids jumping, running and sliding around the house.

What advice would you give a first-time dad?

Ha ha – enjoy the journey. Your life is about to change in so many ways. Your world is about to get a bit smaller, but bigger than you could ever imagine. Support your partner as much as you can, parenting is 10 times easier (and fun) when you have someone supporting you every step of the way. Oh yeah, and and grab sleep whenever you can!

Share a top tip with your fellow dads?

Avoid the trap of doing the same things with your kids each week. Get out of the house and discover something new going on – there is so much amazing stuff going on for kids across the city … and just accept that you need to go to bed a lot earlier than you did before you had kids.

What does fatherhood represent to you? Please describe in few words what fatherhood means to you or has made out of you.

Hmmm, that’s a tough question. Becoming a dad quickly makes you realise what’s important in your life and forces you to think much longer term in everything that you do. In a single word, fatherhood is happiness.

 

Happy