"You're only here for a short while anyway, so try and do something that adds to the pot, that makes life a little bit easier for somebody else, and you're contributing to the world while you're here and not just taking what you can from it," he added.
Paul Rudd, considered one of Hollywood's dreamiest men, has held a life lesson close to his heart that was passed on to him by his late father. It's a philosophy revolving around kindness and something the 53-year-old said has left a lasting impression on him.
The Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania star recently opened up to PEOPLE, revealing that while he had a good relationship with his father and they spoke often, it was rare to have intimate conversations, "the real heart-to-hearts. We didn't really have that," recalled the actor, who grew up in Kansas City. "But I do remember one time where we really did have a great, interesting conversation, and I was asking him just about his thoughts on life," he recollected.
It was during a time when the family was going through a rough patch, that the father-son duo began talking about religion and spirituality despite not being "a really religious family." His father gave him an idea of what he thought religion was all about. "He goes, 'I do believe that you should treat people the way you'd want to be treated. And if I do that, if there's anything else [after this life], I hope that covers it for me, that all bases are kind of covered'," PEOPLE's 2021 Sexiest Man Alive shared. "You're only here for a short while anyway, so try and do something that adds to the pot, that makes life a little bit easier for somebody else, and you're contributing to the world while you're here and not just taking what you can from it," he added.
Those few words made a powerful impact on Rudd who said, "I believe that wholeheartedly, I probably believed it before that. But I think about it now, you know? It was a major moment to have with my dad." The Friends star who shares kids, Jack, 18, and Darby, 13, with his wife Julie Yaeger, also sees traits of his father in himself. "It's how similar I am in many ways to my dad," he admitted. "I identify myself as part of a collective more than I did because I feel like a husband and a father when I think about myself. And I feel like I've learned a lot. People say, 'Oh, you know, I still feel 20.' I don't feel 20 at all, or in my 20s. I feel my age … in a good way," he added.
Paul Rudd says his son never knew he was famous – and thought he actually worked at a movie theater for years.— Complex Pop Culture (@ComplexPop) February 10, 2023
“I never corrected him.” 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/QgD2mQ9J4q
The actor jokingly told Marie Claire UK in 2018 that his kids saw him as "an embarrassing dad" at the time. He said, "My daughter is eight and thinks I'm the bee's knees. My son is 13 and doesn't even want me going to his school. I make jokes to a series of eye rolls." Despite his kids' reactions, the Ant-Man star admitted he's a family man more than anything else. "I identify myself as a parent and a husband way more than somebody who rides around on the back of an ant," he laughed referencing his role as the Marvel superhero.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Jason Merritt