6 habits to strengthen your family

This article offers six basic ideas about the importance of developing family habits that unite families for generations.

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  • Published in Tiempo en Familia by Cindy Peterson on October 5, 2013

  • Translated and adapted by Anders Peterson from the original article “6 hábitos para fortalecer tu familia” by Cindy Peterson

  • Good family habits can be established daily by doing activities that involve family members. The following six ideas can help you succeed as a family and allow you to have everlasting and enjoyable moments:

  • 1. Family meals

  • It is ideal to set aside time to have family meals. For example, parents can set aside time to have lunch or dinner with their children. This helps everyone to develop good manners at the table. When you are gathered as a family, turn off the TV and take this time to talk together about the activities of the day because they can strengthen the family ties.

  • 2. Traditional movies

  • Usually each family has traditional movies that can include classical films, musicals, etc. It would be a good activity to watch a movie together and participate in something fun at the same time, such as having pizza or making comments about the movie after watching it.

  • 3. Do community service together

  • Families can work together to be involved in community projects, such as cleaning an area in the neighborhood; picking up leaves, picking up trash, collecting toys to donate them to a specific institution, etc. This helps family members feel appreciated and allows them to get to know each other better.

  • 4. Establish family traditions

  • Special occasions such as Christmas, birthdays or even memorial days would be a great time for the family to establish simple yet meaningful traditions. For example, in our family, we bake and decorate cookies for our neighbors and friends, and we deliver them as a family.

  • 5. Make an annual family video

  • Almost everyone has the capability of taking several family pictures. It would be a good idea to collect every family picture taken during the year in order to create a family video using a Windows program such as Windows Movie Maker. Families can establish the tradition of watching the annual video during New Year’s Eve in order to review all of important family events during the year. At the same time, this helps each family to create digital documents that can be shared with the following generations.

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  • 6. Make New Year's resolutions and follow up with them

  • It would be ideal for families to take an opportunity every year to make new resolutions and evaluate how they are going throughout the year. For example, if the family has decided to make a trip sometime during the year, they can start by creating a list of the items they will need for the trip in advance. At the end of each year, verifying all resolutions can help family members know what they have accomplished and what goals they should set for the following year.

  • Families that develop good habits are more likely to help each other to reach their goals, and they are usually successful and enjoy their time together.

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Cindy is the mother of three children and works as a special education teacher in a public school. She enjoys spending her free time with family and friends doing outdoor activities and serving the community.

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