“A family in harmony will prosper in everything.”—Chinese Proverb
Raising a family is no easy task to say the least. Family member have so many activities, interests and responsibilities that fill the day. The result can be miscommunication and a whole bunch of stress-filled days. You might hear:
“I told you I was going to _____.”
“You said it was OK that I stayed overnight.”
“I told you weeks ago we had a party to go to tonight.”
The confusion and keeping connected with everyone in your family can be so stressful. So how can you communicate more effectively and reduce you stress?
Keep Connected with Your Kids
Listening is an extremely important tool to really connect with your children. The idea is to be a source of support for your child. Finding creative ways to be an active part of their lives can be a challenge, especially if they push you away.
Communicate with your kids while they're at home. Talk to them face to face and don't be afraid to ask questions. You might be surprised at how they respond. At first it may seem uncomfortable. Keep clear lines of communication and keep a routine to follow as much as possible.
Communication with Your Partner or Spouse
Discover your partner’s style of communication. Listen to your spouse’s feelings carefully, as this will often give you ideas about how you can effectively connect. Your partner may really enjoy spending time cuddling or having a date night with you on a weekly basis. There are so many ways to connect, which will keep your relationship alive
Spend Quality Time with Your Family
Another big stress on today's family is not spending enough time together. This is most likely because everyone is so busily involved in other activities that you barely have time to yourself, let alone one another.
Set aside at least one day out of each week and deem it family day or game night. Spending quality time with your family shows that you're truly interested in what they're doing and that you care about them.
Make time for your spouse or partner. Alone time is important for all marriages so you can continue to strengthen your relationship and explore one another's dreams for the family. Make sure your family enjoys meal together as much as possible. Another idea is to set a certain time aside each week to talk about important issues. Just stay connected.
Manage Financial Issues
Financial problems are major source of stress in families today. Budgeting money and actually staying within your means can be really tough. This is where communication becomes important. Setting clear expectations about bills, recording money, planning major purchases are important in communicating about finances. No one likes money surprises.
Begin to include your children about money as it's age appropriate. You can teach good money skills as well and prepare them for the world. Children need to know that money must be earned and that your debit or credit card isn't somehow filled with money.
Incorporating these ideas into your family life will help you have a more open relationship with each family member.