If you’re a regular reader of this blog, or follow my work on Smart Parenting and Philstar.com, or read my posts on Facebook and Instagram, you’ll know that I’m a total advocate for intentional family time… for making meaningful memories with our families, and for cherishing our relationships with family members! 🙂
Of course, neither my husband nor I are “perfect” at this yet — at making each and every moment with our family count. We have a looooong way to go, so it helps to get tips from other people!
This is why I am super thankful to my newfound acquaintances and collaborators at Marccx Media — they’ve come up with this guest post to share tips on how we can bring our families closer together. 🙂 I hope you’ll enjoy and be blessed by this!
5 Ways to Bring Your Family Closer Together
With work commitments, doctor’s appointments, parent/teacher meetings, playdates, errands, and more, it can be hard to bring the family together. Something always seems to gets in the way, whether your kids are young and living at home, away at college, or with families of their own, the challenges of living in today’s fast-paced society can have harmful effects on the family unit, and it’s essential that we do our best to stay connected even through life’s little obstacles.
According to the New Kids Center, children should learn the importance of family in their lives and know that they can always turn to them in their hour of need. Healthychildren.org advocates the importance of parents and children having genuine respect for one another. Even when there are disagreements or physical separation, demonstrating love, caring, trust, and concern is important at all times to keep the family close.
Here are 5 simple ways to bring your family closer together:
1. Eat dinner as a family.
It may sound simple, but with family member’s conflicting schedules it can be easy to let life take over. Make time as often as possible to actually sit down with your family and break bread together. Turn off the television, shut down your computer, and listen to one another as you ask about each other’s day.
If your relatives live close by, you could try making one day a week, such as Sunday, a family time and invite grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and other relatives other to encourage bonding with your kids.
2. Ban smartphones at certain times.
Gone are the days when the television was considered the unhealthy intruder at the dinner table. Now it’s more than likely at any mealtime that half of those present will be seeing how many “likes” their profile picture got. But chatting with friends who aren’t in the room can isolate us from the people who matter most.
If you’re having trouble getting the attention of your children or partner, or you yourself are constantly listening out for that unmistakable ping of a WhatsApp message, Facebook alert or chime of an incoming email, learn to turn off your smart phones at certain times of day. Make a rule that everyone respects and use that family time for real face-to-face communication.
3. Teach your children how to cook by making it a family fun time.
OK, so we’re not all Martha Stewart, but even if you hate to cook, it can be a fun activity to do with your family. You could ask Grandma for family recipes, follow a TV cooking show, or even ask your kids to come up with the idea and spark their creativity. Just remember to supervise your children in the kitchen at all times.
4. Create rituals and traditions.
This might sound a little strange, but by creating your own rituals and traditions, such as Monday night cook-offs and Friday night games or movie nights, you can actually bond more closely with the family and won’t replace family time with other activities.
5. Don’t let distance defeat you.
If your family is separated by distance, whether it’s interstate or international, there are ways to use technology to bring your family together. Make sure that you schedule time every week to speak with your far away family members, and think about building family blogs, a family website, or photo albums.
How do you make time with your family meaningful? Share your tips and experiences with us in the comments!
*Special thanks to Michael Peggs for writing this post for us! Michael is the founder of Marccx Media, a digital marketing agency specializing in SEO and Content Marketing. Before Marcxx, Peggs worked at Google in business development, forming digital media and advertising partnerships. He is also a blogger and podcaster, hosting the iTunes Top 10 New & Noteworthy podcast You University – The Personal Branding Podcast.