By Shannon Frost Greenstein

I think we can all agree that Garth Brooks is having a bangin’ year.  His world tour is massive, he’s the CMA Entertainer of the Year for the record-breaking SIXTH time, and his single “Ask Me How I Know” is wildly popular.

However, it’s his parenting chops that are getting some recognition recently.

Garth is father to three daughters, which is no small feat in and of itself.  One of them is married, one is engaged, and one is in a long-term relationship with a guy Garth hopes will join the family.

How’s that to shoot down the cliche of the cowboy-boot wearing father with a shotgun threatening the man who’s with his daughter?  Anyway.  We digress.

Garth has had some really good marriage and relationship advice for his girls, and, frankly, it’s not what you would expect.  He stresses, and has always stressed to his family, self care and putting yourself first.

In an interview with Orlando country station K92.3, when talking about raising girls, he says, “The most important thing for her to know, to hear from her father, is she’s got to find happiness within herself before she can share it with anybody else. That’s the main thing. Just get your own ship right, then  you can be a partner to whoever you’re a partner with.”

This, country fans, is huge.

In a time when so many women are suffering from depression, feelings of inadequacy, co-dependence, anxiety, or other conditions, it is SO REFRESHING to hear a voice…and a celebrity voice, a male voice, at that…telling women it is perfectly OK to mind their own happiness.  It’s not selfish.  It’s not self-centered.  It is necessary.

That, Mr. Brooks, is terrific relationship advice, and we’re going to borrow it, if you don’t mind, for our daughters and our sons.  Because, frankly…we could all use to find our own happiness, even before finding someone else’s.  It’s like they say on an airplane…affix your own oxygen mask first before helping anyone in your care.  Because you can’t be a help to those you love, or a partner to the people who matter, if you’re hurting yourself.


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