People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
~ Maya Angelou
How do YOUR kids feel when they walk into your home after a long day? Is your home the harmonious haven you always wanted it to be? A loving home environment is essential for your kids to grow their inner core of self-acceptance and self-love.
But as much as you love your partner and kids, frustrations, disagreements, and arguments can allow an entirely different atmosphere to permeate the entire house. One negative word leads to another, all day long!
So what can you do to help reduce this negativity?
As it turns out, most difficulties encountered with loved ones most likely occur from miscommunication.
Try these communication strategies and activities to bring that loving feeling back into your home:
- Be open and honest with one another. While being honest, be kind when saying something that may cause a family member any distress. They are more receptive when you use kind words and a pleasing tone of voice.
- Have some fun each day. It’s important to have fun together as a family. Family fun doesn’t have to take up a lot of time. It can be as simple as having ice cream cones or playing with a pet. Bringing everyone together helps communication flow better in any household.
- Set priorities for chores that everyone must do. Agree on who does what chores and when they should do them. Let everyone participate with age-appropriate tasks. Write them on a chore chart (or type them into an app that’s easy to manage wherever you are) for clear communication. Setting them up ahead of time can prevent a lot of arguments!
- Keep privacy boundaries. Adults and kids both need their privacy on a regular basis. Ensure that the kids understand the importance of respecting this priority.
- Have a family meeting each week to discuss family issues. Find a time in which everyone in the family can attend. Hold the meeting every week, preferably at the same time. In the meeting, let each family member speak their mind, even if it’s a complaint. Solve challenges, run ideas by each other, and make plans for the future together.
- Allow some free time. Everyone needs some time to do things on their own or with their friends. This can be a variety of activities, depending on the person. Meeting this need will help each family member feel more satisfied, fulfilled, and open to communicating.
- Spend holidays and special events together as a family. Strengthen your family bond with special occasion family traditions. Let the kids share their ideas for special events and celebrations, too.
- Establish a weekly family night. Make time just to enjoy being together. Watch movies, play games, or have story time. Encourage laughter and open communication.
- Learn to negotiate. Learning to compromise and come up with win-win solutions for everyone involved is a priceless skill that will serve your family members well throughout their lives.
- Say, “I love you.” Each day, remember to show your spouse and kids how much you love them. Share loving, encouraging words and hugs freely throughout the day – even if it’s a hard day. (Especially if it’s a rough day!)
You have the power to make your home a pleasant place to live, play, and look forward to the future. Make sure your loved ones feel welcome when they return from work or other outings. They can leave the stresses of the outside world behind as they enter the accepting sanctuary of home.
Try these strategies to make your home a haven. You (and your family) will be glad you did!
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