Today we will learn a bit more about Eric Alper’s journey as a public relations guy working in the music industry while raising his daughter Hannah which is a very active environmental blogger and speaker together with his wife.
“I think because it never bothered me (being hearing impaired and wearing hearing aids while working on the music industry) or it didn’t change how I saw things or how I heard things or how I acted around people I know that has affected Hannah, because her being small in size. Me working in the music industry is proof that you really can do anything if you wanted to and if you set your mind to it and if you have a goal.”
We will get inspired by the amazing way he inspired his daughter to be brave and face her fears through his own experience. Teaching by example and not by a rulebook or his own words.
“I like to say that it is the environment around you that mold what your child is. And I firmly believe that more and more. The power and influence that parents have over their kids.”
He will also share his very deep view on how the environment we as parents and family create around our children will have a very big impact on what they will come to be in the future. Something we should always have present and always be careful about. Specially because that is not the first time our Diversity Dads have mentioned it during the show.
“Work is work and work can be fun and work is business and work is really, really stressful, we are all just trying to make it, survive and be a breadwinner or be that protector, but at the end of the day the family, no matter how big or how small it is, is still one of the biggest, if not the biggest influence that they will ever have in your kids life. How you treat strangers, how you talk to the waiter at the restaurant when your food is cold. How you treat the bus driver or the taxi driver, who is just trying to make a living just the same as you are. How you treat the librarian, how you treat people has a real big effect on your kid and sometimes it is too late for you to realize that.”
Still on the wisdom and on the “things we didn’t hear for the first time on the show” train we will also get a very important piece of advice that I believe every dad and every parent and everyone that is responsible for the process of raising a child (including teachers and doctors and everyone else around the child) should take to heart:
“Just be there. Be in the present, be in the moment. Dads sometimes may not get as much love in relation to the mom, when they scrape their knee they may go to mom first and that is okay. You just have to be there and be present.”
Let’s enjoy this episode and be proud together with Eric for how many amazing things his daughter was able to do coming from her experience at home following her passion and not being afraid of the challenge ahead just like her parents even at such a young age. Let’s learn from his experience and guide our children to their own greatest achievements, during their childhood and through their whole lives.
“Hannah is now 13 and from the moment that she could walk I always took her to shows. She was always the one that was with me with the giant headphones on and the ear muffs and I took her to everything I was doing PR for that was applicable for her. It is kinda like taking your child to workday.”
“When she was 9 she went to a blogging conference in Philadelphia and she learned how to start a wordpress blog and we told her that she could start a blog but we didn’t want it to be about like pop music, we didn’t want it to be about what everyone was writing about.”
“She started getting noticed in the media and in the environmental groups because there weren’t a lot of kids that were blogging about. Certainly there were a lot of kids that were doing their part but not necessarily blogging. She got asked to speak at WE day which is a huge event across North America that is organized by Free the Children.”
“Her blog has grown to over a million hits and she does keynotes all around North America and she has done a couple of TedX as well. The blog is called callmehannah.ca. I think that her growing up in the environment that I was in, being around the entertainment industry really helped her know that this is a way of life for people. It may not be normal or average to your friends or family but all of it has happened to her because of her hard work and her efforts and her energy that she puts into her blog and into reading and her writing.”
“Diversity dad’s out there, it is all about being a champion at your child’s interest.”
“Everybody has their gift, maybe they are painters, maybe they are drawers, maybe they are great writing stories, maybe they are great with their hands working and building things or maybe it is just your time that you have to give.”
“Issue plus your gift equals change. That is what Hannah likes to talk about. You find your issue, you find your gift and boom, you’ve suddenly changed the world. And as parents it feels good to encourage them. We all love our kids and for them to care about the environment, for them to care about other people, for them to have empathy for people is one of the greatest things to experience as a parent.”
“I think just watching Hannah grow and realising that when I look at videos of her being on stage when she was 9 and 10 and then watching her do a 45 minute keynote now blows me away. I mean, at 9 I was still playing in mud you know. There is just something really special about watching your child love to do something and continually try to get better at it. Whether it is math homework or reading or writing or sports or just being a better brother or sister.”
“We are both awful singers. But it doesn’t stop us from singing.”
“I guess my answer should be actually seeing her being born and saying “oh uow, that really is amazing”. I would really take a bullet for her.”
“It is about facing fears. Whether you are facing your fears as a father or whether you are performing in front of 18 thousand people. Facing your fears to be a champion, again, be a champion for your son or daughter.”
“It is the art form. The very fact that you have created this podcast is success enough. Sarah Silverman, the comedian, has a great line. She says: “You know, whenever someone comes up to me and says I’m thinking about doing… she interrupts and says “You are not doing it”. Just do it.”
“My struggle as a new dad, there is times where I don’t even know what I am doing but I am just going to it and doing it and I am sure a lot of dads feel that way whether they are a new dad or have other sons and daughters.”
“Dads see parenting and children and babies much different than they do when it comes to moms and women. My wife would probably never let me do half the things I did with Hannah. But that is okay. I didn’t break her, I didn’t kill her. You will always be the protector. Dads can do things that moms can’t do.”
That Eric Alper page:
Call me Hannah page:
“Let’s learn together. Let’s grow together. Let’s be dads together. Peace.”