By keeping families at home, the Coronavirus did something special to families that have been distant. It provided them with time enough to strengthen their bond. (Well, for those who see it that way.)
I’m not a doctor or a psychologist, but I know what the feeling is to have strong family bonds. It’s one that intoxicates —I experienced it! Yes, I did. Due to the pandemic’s hit, a lot of activities became remote, even working. And it took me home, where I learnt the tips I’m about sharing.
Home should be where your family is; the house, where they are contained, and your heart, the foundation on which love thrives. You make your family stronger through bonds: father-daughter bond, the mother-to-son bond, couples bond, and all other ones your thoughts are coming up with. But, how do you do this?
Known factors that promote bond strengthening aren’t far from reach but are mostly overlooked. Read on, and I’ll reveal some subtle ways to strengthen family bond when you’re staying at home. If well implemented, it would add core to the bond in your family, even when you do not stay at home all of the time.
My definition of a home might seem absurd, but it’s quite relatable: It’s a place where your heart is and finds peace. One very big challenge faced in building bonds (with your family or anyone at all) is the issue of placing your heart where it should be..
“My family is my life, and everything else comes second as far as what’s important to me.” — Michael Imperioli
Once this wall of priority has been built, it becomes very much easier to carry out all that you’ll knead or knit for yourself from this piece.
1. RELISH THE TIME.
Never wish you spent a little more time at work. More importantly, never wish you spent a little more time with your family. Okay, pause. What this means is to give more time to your family, and to ensure their happiness while you can. Nothing can be substituted with this.
2. LOOSEN UP
If really you’re working towards strengthening bonds, then you have to know and understand every member of your family better. This is a cheat-fix for you: you do not have to be rigid in your approach all of the time; let there be an atmosphere of camaraderie around you. Loosen up sometimes.
Inasmuch as you want to build a family where respect is upheld, you should understand that respect is not demanded; it is earned. Respect and Trust actually. In other words, the more you are free with every member; the more you gain their trust; the more their real self is portrayed and understood. This understanding, amongst every member, is what gives strength to individual and collective bonds.
3. GET CREATIVE
Spice is what every member of the family brings to the table, so don’t forget to add yours. Get creative!
– Tell stories. Stories that the family relates with tend to build core and trust. If you met “Tales by Moonlight,” you can tell “Tales by Torchlight” from the comfort of your home. The general idea is to teach morals by way of telling stories.
– Give Gifts. Who doesn’t like the sound of that? No one outgrows being delighted with a gift. Or have you? On your next outing, you should try this. Get something out of the usual. Even if it’s a pack of cupcakes for the family.
4. DO THINGS TOGETHER.
The little things you do today accumulate to form every bit of memory you have of and for yourselves. Be sure to take advantage of the moment. There are countless things you can do together as a family, and you do not want them to slide by.
Below, I’ve put together some of the myriads that there are (you can always add to the list in the comment section):
– Eat (out) together.
– Play together. (Not all lessons are learned from being stone-faced. More on this below)
– Pray together. A family that prays together, stays together. Well, most families.
– See movies together.
– Cook, and create new recipes.
– Jog and walks
5. GET DISCUSSING
Give room for every member to voice out without being shunned. You want to create an impression that you are a good listener and not just a dictator. If possible, create time to meet with every member separately to ask about their wellbeing, and spend time knowing how their day went.
Discuss. At the table, about issues. Let everyone speak their mind, and give room for corrections. This fosters the feeling that everyone has an opinion in the family building. And when correcting, do so in love. When you talk about the challenges and discuss the possible solutions, then you can come up with family goals that will address those problems.
6. BE ATTENTIVE
Laying aside the hypothetical bias that boys are drawn to their mothers and girls, to their fathers. The real magnet is the care and attention given by one side and received by the other. Everybody likes attention. The same way you like being heard is the same way your family craves it, and how you give it should not come with any bias – it will be noticed.
Pay attention to details, from the smallest to the biggest. Like the fact that your child doesn’t like being called by a particular pet name, or your spouse enjoys the eat-outs on Sunday evenings. These tiny things will guarantee you an understanding of your family. Trust me!
7. STAY IN TOUCH
Relationships are built on communication, effective communication. This must exist between you and your spouse, as well as other members of the family –even the baby in the womb. Never underestimate the power of physical touch in communication. Even the unborn child appreciates this (when it kicks, and the stomach is caressed), talk more grownups.
If your son would not refuse a kiss to his head, I bet your spouse would not refuse a massage! More importantly, when you’re away from home, Call. Text. Video call.
8. HAVE FUN
As much as you can, reduce screen time when you are at home so as to maximize your family time (even if it’s just during family meals). Yes, drop that device! One of the many practical things you can do together is having fun. Let your kids see you as their play buddy too.
Being friends with your kids is a surety when they know you create time for fun. You are not a bore! Don’t let your spouse see you as one around the kids. Integration is important, and what better way to do so than this?
You should try these out:
– Create a mini cinema in your living room, and stretch a day into the night because of it.
– Draw together, homework too.- Read to each other.
– Go on spontaneous trips (Out of the blues!)
– Games and sports (Card games, board games, soccer, and more)
– Little contests. (Staring contest, dancing. Mannequin challenge, amongst the lots.)
– Make funny family videos, and take photographs.
– Plant a mini garden. If you know little, you can learn from your kids. (You can use that avenue to teach them life and growth principles.)
– Family parties. Weekend getaways.
– Learn an instrument, sing along, and play together.
“Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing.” – Jim Rohn
Phew! Seems like a lot?
Here’s how you begin. You begin by stepping back from that wonderful computer screen and pulling your mind off of your devices to your family. Hey! At the end of the day, you’re not just strengthening your family bond, you’re building a strong family.
The words of Leon Ho, founder, and CEO of Lifehack, on setting family goals would make for my subscript:
“Keep in mind that when setting your family goals, your ultimate objectives will be to build a strong, healthy, and happy family. Being strong means that your family is bonded firmly together and that every member feels important and connected to the family.”
What you just read is a sure-fire way to building and strengthening the family bond. It’s proven because it worked for me. Was this insightful? Leave a comment below!
ALSO, READ 41 Keys to a successful marriage