‘Just try to show up’

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On the basketball court, Dwyane Wade is a force to be reckoned with, but being a great parent to his children is much more important to him than the titles he earned in the NBA before his retirement.

Alongside his wife, Gabrielle Union, Wade is a father of four children, and the legal guardian of his nephew. Still, he finds time to honor his commitments inside of his home despite his demanding schedule.

His biggest piece of advice for parents, that he keeps at the forefront of his mind, is being present for your children when they need you.

I try to make sure I show up for everybody and my kids. I show up in moments that I know are important to them.

Dwyane Wade

Former NBA Player

“I just try to show up. Whatever that looks like for you [because] all of our lives are different,” Wade tells CNBC Make It.

“I have a very hectic and busy life, a very public life and all of these things [I do]. But I try to make sure I show up for everybody and my kids. I show up in moments that I know are important to them.”

Yet parenting isn’t always a slam dunk for Wade: “I think I have my good moments [and] I have my not so good moments, like all parents.”

But through experience, he was able to learn that being present for his children doesn’t only boil down to attending graduations and athletic competitions. Though Wade fully supports their passions by showing up to those events when he can, checking in with them is just as important.

“I show up by listening sometimes. Just shutting my mouth, taking a drive,” he says.

Listening can go a long way in helping your child to feel more supported and valued, Dr. Tovah Klein, a child psychologist, told CNBC Make It. Especially considering, 45% of children feel their voices aren’t heard by adults, according to a survey published by the United Nations Children’s Fund in 2017.

“Showing up is half the battle. If I just show up and sit around Zaya [his daughter] for a couple of hours, she gon’ tell me everything I need to know,” he adds, laughing to himself.

“Because you’re there and you’re present, and it’s important.”

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