Making personal resolutions is important for everyone, but making resolutions together as a family can be just as – if not more – beneficial. Take a look at some of these simple habits and practices that can help bring your family closer this year.
Eat together. Everyone has to eat! Even if you are struggling to find a common bond with a distant teen, this is the perfect way to ensure everyone is doing something together. Take this time to rid the table of distractions — that means turning off all electronics and simply enjoying company and conversation.
Organize family time. Spend part of a Saturday afternoon together – or even an hour after school – doing something fun. If you’re crunched for time, a quick walk outside after dinner gives everyone the opportunity to get out and do something. Or, after the table is cleared, bring out a card game or board game. Try to organize this bonding time once a week — you’ll be surprised how much fun you have!
Focus on gratitude. It has been proven that an attitude of gratitude boosts happiness and togetherness among families. Each day, reflect on good things that happened —both big and small. Talk about them at the dinner table or write them down in a family gratitude jar or journal. At the end of the week, have everyone talk about something good that a fellow family member experienced that week. This will serve as a reminder to you and your children to appreciate the smaller things in life.
Take a break. It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle of calendars filled with activities. However, it is also important for children and parents to have some free, unstructured time. This time allows you to read a book, call an old friend, or whatever else it is you struggle to find time for. It allows children to get creative and entertain themselves and develop independence. Kids can use this time to relax or take a break from responsibilities — and it may seem like younger children don’t need a break, but everyone can benefit from some “me” time.
Make and share personal goals. In addition to improving family life, encourage each person to set individual goals. By sharing these resolutions, you can encourage one another and gain better understanding as to what that person would like to change this year. Together, you can discuss financial, social, spiritual, mental and health-related goals.