The Family That Plays Together, Stays Together

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The family is globally known as the basic unit of society. That’s simply because it is where values, principles, knowledge, and morality are molded, shaping young ones into adults that will soon influence the world. 

As such, the family is also seen as one of the most important pillars of any civilization. When this basic unit continuously crumbles, so does society. Thus, all of us need to build healthy family relationships. 

However, there’s no instruction manual on being a good member of the family. The best we can do is gather what we all collectively know and propose a viable conclusion. Here’s our attempt at that. 

From what we’ve found, familial activities help build internal relationships. Of course, we’re going to let you in on that secret. We’ll show you that the family that plays together stays together. 

Understanding Family Relationships 

Did you know that one in every three children aged 12 to 17 live with a single parent only? This family setup can significantly affect a child’s development throughout the years. That’s why we must understand family relationships and how we can strengthen them. We’ll talk about this in this first chapter. 

The Importance of a Healthy Family 

First, let’s talk about why maintaining healthy relationships within the family is important. Shouldn’t we all just mind our own businesses and let our family be? Well, it turns out that a healthy family will bring the person countless benefits, and we’ve written some of them below. 

Emotional Growth 

We develop emotional intelligence and maturity when communicating and interacting with other people. You are highly likely to spend most of your time with your family from the moment you are born. That’s why when we are part of a healthy family where we can talk openly about what we feel, we also get to grow emotionally. 

Responsibility 

A healthy family will also teach you the value of responsibility. Responsibility to yourself, your family, other people, and more. 

Children would often view their parents as their role models since they’re the very first individuals they build relationships with. As parents, they provide for the family by keeping the home in order and giving their children what they need. This teaches children that they are somewhat responsible for other people, especially as they grow older. 

Empathy 

One of the hardest things to teach children is empathy. When they’re young and even when they reach teenage years, they tend to focus more on themselves than think about other people. 

However, when children get exposed to relationships where people care for one another, they realize the importance of empathy. This allows them to become better people as they grow, letting them form intimate relationships not just with family members but also with friends and strangers. 

How to Maintain Healthy Family Relationships 

The question now is, how do we maintain healthy family relationships to enjoy their benefits? Every family is different, but more importantly, the way to prosper them is almost always the same. Below are the key pillars of keeping healthy relationships within the family. 

Open Communication 

There’s probably nothing more important than open communication. Family members who are encouraged to talk about what they feel and think and receive other people’s opinions are more likely to settle disagreements and disputes. Additionally, fostering a healthy communication channel is the gateway to developing other essential values like trust, respect, and empathy. 

Respect Individuality 

Every person is unique, which is why part of maintaining healthy family relationships is to realize a person’s individuality. Some of their behavior may not always be what the parents want, but it should be fine as long as they’re not harmful. Not letting children and family members find out who they really are or forcing them to fit a particular image can only harm the relationship. 

Quality Time 

Lastly, most healthy families share one thing in common; they take the time and effort to make fun and memorable experiences. Spending quality time together lets each family member understand others better. This also keeps them involved and motivated in keeping the family strong and bonded. 

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The Advantages of Engaging in Family Activities 

As we’ve mentioned earlier, engaging in family activities is one of the most effective ways to build healthy relationships. Have you ever wondered why that seems to be the case? Well, activities involving each family member provide them with the following advantages: 

Leadership 

Young people are frequently looking for opportunities to prove themselves and show others they’re unique. By letting them take charge of family activities, they can develop various leadership skills. They learn how to organize, plan, and communicate with other people, which are essential when they begin living a life of their own. 

Lessons 

Family activities also provide children with the opportunity to learn valuable life lessons. For instance, accepting defeat is vital for a child’s growth. You don’t want them to grow to resent or take advantage of other people just so they could win. Sometimes, failures are a way to let them know that life will not always go the way they want it to go. 

Happiness 

Lastly, nobody can deny that family activities are fun! When you play with your family members, you get to build memories that you will cherish for the rest of your life. The happiness that family activities provide children with is essential for developing a sense of belongingness in the world. 

Building a Healthy Family 

Obviously, we won’t help you if we just keep mentioning the benefits of a healthy family. That’s why we tried to dive deeper into it and develop a structure that should improve your relationships. Discussed below are some of the most efficient ways to build stronger familial ties. 

Indoor and Outdoor Activities for the Family 

The size of your family doesn’t matter. There’s always an unbelievably long list of all the fun indoor and outdoor you could try to strengthen your relationships. It might take a while to talk about them, so we’ve only listed some of the best ones. 

Card and Board Games 

Card and board games are almost always the go-to activities for many families because they’re relatively easy to prepare and understand. They’re also perfect for all types of weather since you only have to stay indoors. Monopoly, Uno, Snakes & Ladders, Scrabble, and Domino are just a few examples that you can play. 

Cooking 

You still haven’t found the best indoor activity to spend time with your family? Why don’t you try cooking? 

Aside from strengthening family bonds, it teaches valuable life skills to children. You can look for recipes online and cook them at home with the family. Just make sure you have all the ingredients first before diving into it. 

Swimming 

Arguably the most popular outdoor activity for all families is swimming. Like cooking, learning to swim is an essential life skill, especially for children. It’s a family adventure starting from packing your things to actually driving and staying on the beach. 

Additionally, you can further increase the fun by playing all sorts of games like beach volleyball, frisbee, and even tag. You get to bring your fur-babies, too! 

Biking 

What’s better than having fun? It’s having fun while staying healthy. Yes, there are actually lots of family activities out there that can improve everyone’s physical health. One of them is biking. 

Investing in bicycles for every family member might sound expensive, but we can guarantee you that it’s worth it. Aside from being physically fit, you can teach your kid how to fix their bike, developing their analytic and psychomotor skills. 

Gardening 

Another fun and healthy activity you can try with the family is gardening. It teaches many valuable life lessons like empathy, empowerment, and eco-friendliness. 

Gardening can also improve physical, emotional, and mental health. You don’t have to worry about not having a backyard for all the plants, either. Urban gardening is a widely popular form of developing your green thumb, something you can do even if you live in a relatively small apartment. 

How to Decorate Your Home With the Family 

If you have the type of family that chooses to stay at home instead of going out, we’ve got good news for you. There are also lots of things you can do to your home to build family relationships. It doesn’t just provide them with a space to have fun, but the act of decorating your home can also be beneficial. 

That said, below are some ideas on beautifying your home with and for the family. 

Play Area 

If you have little kids at home, you must already know how much they love to play. That’s just part of their nature as they’re growing up. However, this can sometimes lead to accidents like broken vases, TV, and other furniture pieces and appliances, especially when they play indoors. 

That’s why it’s a great idea to build a play area in your backyard. Some installations are relatively easy, like a swing hanging from a tree. Others may require you to really put in the time, effort, and money. Sandboxes, monkey bars, and slides are quite big projects, but we can assure you that they’re all worth it. 

Treehouse 

If you really want to go big, you can also build a treehouse. Obviously, this requires you to have a big enough tree in your backyard, not to mention the level of skill you must have. 

Nonetheless, there are simple treehouses that anyone with adequate woodworking skills can build. For instance, you can build a simple elevated platform around the tree and install a ladder on one side. This can significantly be a fun place for your kids to hang out in and play at. 

DIY Décor 

Aside from outdoor installations, you can also improve your home’s indoor quality. The best part is that these DIY decors and art projects can be an avenue for family bonding. From painting pieces of furniture, handcrafting picture frames, to making a chalkboard wall for your family to leave notes, all of these can really be beneficial in improving relationships. 

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Healthy Family Diet 

A healthy family means each member is literally healthy—physically, mentally, and emotionally. The best way to achieve that, aside from exercising, is to ensure that everyone eats a healthy diet. Below are some tips on how to have healthy meals with the family. 

Fruits and Veggies 

The most important part of a healthy family diet is eating fruits and vegetables. These types of food include all the nutrients every member of the family needs. You can also combine this with one family activity we mentioned earlier: gardening. 

Less Sugar 

Whether or not your family has a history of diabetes, cutting out on sugar is essential to a healthy diet. Be sure that sodas, sports drinks, and other artificially sweetened beverages are not a regular part of your family’s meals. 

Switch to 100% organic juices or brew them yourself by juicing fruits for a healthy but delicious meal. 

Consistent Mealtimes 

It’s not just about what you eat but also about when you eat. One of the reasons families eat meals together is to promote consistent mealtimes. This avoids overeating with other members of the family. 

By sticking to three meals and one snack per day, you can guarantee that all of you are eating healthily. It’s also an excellent opportunity to communicate with one another. 

You’re an Integral Part of the Family 

Before we finally bid you goodbye, we want to leave you with a few more tips and tricks in building or maintaining a healthy family. This will allow you to navigate through the challenges many people face in addressing concerns at home. Yes, there’s something you can do about it, because you’re an integral part of the family, too. 

The Roles of Each Member of the Family 

A healthy family is not built by one man alone. It takes the conscious involvement of each member of the family. It’s important to note that these are not rules but rather guidelines that will give you an idea of what role each family member plays. 

Parents 

The parents probably have the most significant responsibility in building a healthy family. They are the household leaders, which means they shoulder the responsibility of keeping it organized. They are also the biggest decision-makers ranging from the smallest things like what to eat or where to spend the vacation to the biggest things like children’s education. 

The parents are also the ones who provide for the family. That’s why they work tirelessly at their jobs, which can sometimes hinder them from other duties like spending time with their kids. Additionally, parents shape and mold the children through life lessons and achieve developmental milestones. 

Grandparents 

Grandparents in different families also play different roles. Some of them play the roles of being secondary parents, which means they provide wisdom to the children. They also tend to be the next caregivers when the parents are busy with other things, most commonly their work. 

Grandparents are also the ones who keep family traditions alive. However, in totality, they had already given so much to the family and fulfilled their duties when they were younger. This means they can otherwise just enjoy a comfortable life. The acts of service they provide to the family are almost always just out of love, both for the parents and the children. 

Siblings or Children 

Siblings are like a group of friends bonded by blood. They should provide emotional support to one another, allowing each to grow to their best selves. While it’s true that they might often fight, the bond they share is far greater than the challenges they face. They also have the responsibility to listen to their parents, especially if it’s for their own good. 

The Common Pitfalls of a Dysfunctional Family 

If you simply read all the tips we’ve mentioned here about building a healthy family, it actually sounds pretty simple. This brings forth the question of why do dysfunctional families exist? Aside from the inability to follow the guidelines here, there are also many problems surrounding a family. Here are some of these pitfalls: 

Poor Communication 

The lack of a healthy and open communication channel is still the worst and most common pitfall of a dysfunctional family. Some families don’t talk about serious and sensitive concerns, while other families don’t talk at all. This turns their homes into some sort of living quarters with strangers. 

The inability of children to listen to their parents, or even parents failing to consider their children’s opinions, will eventually lead to broken relationships. Healthy communication builds trust, avoids resentment, and releases the tension between family members. 

Substance Abuse 

We can’t even begin to tell you just how much drugs and alcohol changes a person’s brain structure. Their dependency on these substances makes them unable to care for other people, as their only driving factor and goal is to satisfy their addictions. Thus, they fail to fulfill their duties as members of the family. 

Infidelity 

This is more about spouse relationships than it is about children. Infidelity is one of the leading causes of broken families; in fact, about 50% of marriages in the US end in divorce. 

A huge chunk of that is due to the partner’s attraction to another person outside of the marriage. While single parents strive hard to provide for the family, it significantly affects children that they sometimes lose their paths

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How to Address Family Concerns 

Problems within the family are inevitable. The best thing we can do is find out how we can work our way around them and come out stronger. Avoidance may sometimes work, but it doesn’t address the issue. It simply puts it on hold. That’s why you must know the three steps below on solving family disputes. 

Communication 

We’ve said it time and time again, but we’ll say it again just to help you realize how important it is. You can’t solve a problem within the family if none of you chooses to communicate. There’s usually a power struggle within family members, with one imposing their beliefs and rules on the others. 

Communication is the first step towards solving a family problem. It’s about opening up about where you stand and taking what the other members have to say. 

Negotiation 

Once everything is laid down, the next step is negotiation. Most problems within the family get solved at this stage. 

Negotiation is about meeting halfway, compromising some of your beliefs to accept what the other person wants to happen. It provides the family with equal grounds for functioning properly without putting everyone at risk. 

Professional Help 

If open communication and proper negotiation didn’t solve the problem, the best route is to seek professional help. We’re not just talking about marriage counseling between parents. 

Sometimes, children suffer from mental health concerns that can heavily impact the family. That’s why seeking psychiatric help for anxiety, depression, and other disorders is important. Additionally, interventions like rehabilitation and admission to an institution are helpful for families coping with substance abuse. 

Conclusion 

Life is beautiful. That is especially true for children who grew up in healthy and loving families. It is our duty to provide safer, happier, and more comfortable environments for our families, and we can achieve that by fulfilling our designated roles and duties. 

A happy family is built on health. It’s not just about a healthy lifestyle. It’s also about a healthy environment where everyone gets to mold the memories that will shape their lives. One way to do that is to engage in activities that promote healthy relationships. 

If you want to know more about playing, eating, and growing with the family, feel free to visit our website. We regularly upload articles, guidelines, and reviews related to building healthy family relationships. 

We’ll prove to you that the family that plays together stays together. 

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