In the digital age, maintaining healthy relationships is harder than ever. With so many distractions begging for more of our time, how do we focus on the things in our lives that matter the most? Plus, with the living arrangements for many families changing, how do we keep these bonds alive and well?
The truth of the matter is that the world is changing whether we like it or not. However, we can respond to these changes with new approaches to relationship-building. To get you started, here are 3 tips for maintaining healthy family relationships.
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1. Schedule Family Time
Since it’s impossible to make more time in the day, it’s vital that you schedule specific time as family time. Whether you have young kids or teens, everyone can come together for scheduled family time.
Start by setting aside time for family. This should fit with everyone’s schedule. You might choose to host family time once a week or even just once a month. Every little moment counts! If you’re not physically together, such as if you have kids in college, use an app like say for android to video chat.
2. Eat Meals Together
Meals together as a family are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Less families eat dinner together than ever before, whether it’s because of scheduling conflicts or the distraction of the TV.
Making meals together a phone-free and TV-free time is a great way to connect as a family. If you can’t do meals together every night, that’s okay. Just vowing to have 2-3 meals together as a family each will already do wonders for family time.
Use this time to check in with each other. Ask about each other’s days, your feelings, and all of the little things. Even if you’re just laughing and having a good time, these are the memories that will last a lifetime.
3. Volunteer as a Family
Finally, one last way to maintain healthy relationships as a family is actually to volunteer together. It’s already been proven that the more we give, the happier we are. This is true for all ages. When a family comes together to volunteer for a cause that matters to them, this is a powerful learning experience for everyone.
You can do something small like make a special craft for those in need or something bigger like serving meals every Thanksgiving. Volunteering with kids even helps widen their perspective of the world. Not only will they be more grateful for the things they have, but they’ll learn about empathy and caring for those in need. This is a lifelong gift that keeps on giving.
Volunteering together might seem like a huge time commitment, but you can fit it in your schedule on whatever scale works for you. Maybe you volunteer once a month, or maybe just before the holidays. This is still a great way to create a positive experience for everyone. When you give back, everyone wins.
Enjoy Your Time as a Family
There’s a lot of pressure nowadays for everything to be perfect all the time. Instead of worrying about how things “should” be, focus on what you can control. This time together is something you can never get back, so make sure you’re using it wisely.
When you set aside time to maintain your family relationships in a healthy way, you show the importance of family bonds. This is something your entire family can look on fondly for years to come. Now that you have some inspiration, it’s time to get started.