Some people come and go in your life. However, family members will always be part of your story, whether you maintain the relationships or not. Building strong family connections while everyone lives under one roof is essential—learn how to nurture these bonds for a lifetime of love and happiness.
Make Time for Conversation
Too often, family members talk at each other rather than to each other. Your children are their own people with opinions and passions; make time for daily conversations to learn what makes each household member unique.
Eating together without distractions is the easiest way to encourage communication. Some families even prefer a round dining room table because it allows everyone to be easily seen and heard. You could even create a conversation circle in your living room by pointing couches and chairs toward each other rather than at a television.
Spend Quality Time Together
Daily conversations are good starting points for building strong family connections. However, healthy families spend quality time together outside of the home. One of the benefits of traveling for teens includes forming deep family bonds, so consider planning a vacation to make fun, loving memories together.
Don’t limit your quality time to vacations and excursions. Sometimes, you make the best memories by doing ordinary things together, like running errands. Some families also
schedule time each week for movie and game nights; this way, even busy members get the chance to connect.
Form Family Traditions
There’s no better way to build common interests than by forming traditions. These special moments unique to your family give everyone a common thread. Some households build traditions through religious holidays, while others create inside jokes that last years and years.
One such family tradition is giving your children advent calendars every holiday season. Some families pass down heirlooms to connect past and future generations. Get creative with your traditions to develop collective memories everyone can share.
Communicate Openly and Honestly
The most important part of building strong family connections is communication. Your children and spouse should feel comfortable talking about their feelings. Discipline and boundaries are crucial, but so are grace and mercy; have an open door policy where everyone can express themselves without fear of judgment.
Show love openly, and don’t be afraid of affection. Children learn how to love others by watching their role models. You can’t overuse phrases like “I love you” and “I’m proud of you.” If your children know you’re supportive, they’re more likely to communicate honestly.
Solid connections don’t break under stress and conflict. Take time to nurture your family relationships now so they can withstand whatever life throws at you.