Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Keys to Family Happiness

Money? Love? Having time to spend with loved ones? What is the key to your true happiness?

Many people wish only to have enough money to provide for the needs of their family, while others wish to be rich enough to vacation whenever they feel the urge. If you are someone who has struggled throughout your life to make a living and keep a roof over your head, you probably need very little to make you happy. Here are some things you can try to make your home a happy one for your whole family.

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Make Dinner a Family Event

Psychiatrist and nutrition counselors alike speak of the benefits of family mealtime. A family having a meal together creates a loving, friendly environment for children. This helps them grow and learn. Benefits include everything from fostering confidence in youth to healthier eating habits. In a newsletter on the subject Elaine Bowen, Nutrition Education Specialist at WVU notes, “Family mealtime benefits children’s intellectual, physical, and emotional development.” She goes on to discuss that children learn by watching and talking to adults during this time. Relax and enjoy a few meals together each week as a family and watch your happiness grow!

Start a Savings Account

Though I normally would not say money is a key to happiness, the truth is money is required for nearly every aspect of normal living. If you have not started a savings account already, you should do so. Planning is key here. A savings account gives you money to fall back on in a time of need. Unexpected events, such as accidents or the car breaking down, occur often. Being prepared in advance for the monetary aspects of these things will take worry off your shoulders so you can enjoy life just a little more.

Plan a Date Night with Your Significant Other

For many adults, work often interferes with spending time with loved ones. No one is more important that your family. To foster the bond between you and your significant other, plan a date night at least once a month. This may not seem like much, but it can really help. Work and life have plenty of stresses, many of which cause tension in the relationship. Date night is a time when you can relax and just enjoy each other. Reconnecting and talking while enjoying a meal or taking a long walk helps recharge both of you. In addition, the night off calms the nerves and allows you to regain focus. You will be less likely to fight after a special night together meaning the home will be a much happier place.

Make a List

Making your own list of the things that make you happy allows you to see what you should be focusing on in life. Start by writing the first few things you think of, and then add to the list as time goes on. Make it a point to follow your list as well. If spending more time with family would make you happy, plan an outing. Make sure you follow through with your list. You could even use a calendar to plan around everyone’s busy schedule.

Doing things that make you and your family happy is just as important as going to work every day. It brings everyone closer together. It lets your loved ones know you care about them and want to be with them. Everyone appreciates a break from everyday life once in a while. Be sure to ask your family members what would make them happy. Plan to do things they want to do as well. This will validate their feelings and needs. In the end, you are in control of your own happiness. If you do not try to make things better, things will not get better.

Put forth the effort and reap the rewards of having a loving, happy and healthy family!

© 2013 Beverly Sadler (Rowynyew)

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