Over the years, as we have moved and developed friendships – one compliment that I continually get is how happy my little family seems. I also get asked all the time how my kids get along so well and why your house always seems so peaceful. Of all the compliments I receive, these types of compliments mean the most to me! Because at the end of the day – my family is EVERYTHING!
Developing a desirable home filled with love, laughter, and family harmony has been one of my biggest goals in life. Sure – we have our little fights and quarrels, but on the whole, we REALLY are a family that is blessed to have peace within the walls of our home, where each of our family members feels like our home is a safe space.
This post may seem a little off the beaten track from what I usually write about it, but I felt compelled to share my strategies based on the emails I receive and the questions I constantly get about building a stronger family! Today I will be sharing the best way to promote peace and family harmony within the walls of our homes.
10 Things You Can Do To Promote Love, Peace, and Family Harmony!
- Believe That Your Kids are GOOD. One of the best pieces of advice that I have ever received was from a legit winner of the “Mother of The Year” award. Yep, it is a REAL thing! She told me that kids are born inherently good. It’s our job as parents not to screw that up! I want you to think about this, if you are constantly correcting your kids and telling them that they are “stinkers” or a “pill,” what are they going to start to believe about themselves? Be careful and mindful with the words you choose, especially with your kids! Your comments and feelings about them will help them to shape how they feel about themselves. And how they feel about themselves determines how they behave.
- When people compliment your children, agree with them!! Please don’t say something, like, oh, they are a pill or a handful at home… Whenever I hear parents complaining about their kids, it hurts my heart. Even if your kids never hear you saying those words, they can feel them. Kids are immensely sensitive to your energy and vibe. Choose every opportunity to praise and reaffirm to your child that they are good, that they are well behaved, and that you are so proud and happy that they are a part of your family. Kids need to hear and know this!!
- CHOOSE LOVE. When kids act up or exhibit behavioral problems, it is REALLY easy to lose your cool. I am not perfect – I still lose my patience now and again – it is definitely less frequent these days, instead of blowing up and sending them to their room and starting a screaming match – all not effective. I now STOP, take a deep breath and consider where this pattern of behavior might be coming from. I choose to see the behavior through the lens of love. Are they tired, are they stressed, did someone upset them at school, are they hungry. I take the time to try and understand. Often I sit with the upset child and ask questions. Trying to understand and relate to what they might be going through. When kids are acting up often is when they are in the most need of LOVE. If they are acting up because they are being told no, they usually do not understand. I try to calmly and rationally explain why I chose to say no. Sometimes through a real conversation, I realize I might have been wrong to say no. Instead of holding onto being “right,” I let go and apologize and make the right decision for my child. This is also a technique that works wonders in your marriage, as well!
- Meditate Daily – Meditation is a must! It helps me stay centered and relaxed. It also helps me to let go of any negative energy I may have been holding onto. Allowing myself quiet time every day helps me be more patient and loving with my kids and hubby. It has become my daily shot of sanity and patience. Several amazing mobile apps out there offer guided meditations to help you get the hang of it. This is also a great time to reflect and seek guidance for your kid’s and husband’s needs. It provides me with the ongoing support I need every day to show up as the best Mom possible.
- Play with Your Kids & Spouse: Take time to play and be silly with your kiddos. They need that closeness with you, where they see that it is ok to play and have fun. It’s hard to be stressed and anxious when you’re laughing and having fun. This is good for your kiddos, but it is also really good for you! Playing as an adult is also essential. We love having a family game night! These new weekly family gatherings have become a favorite amongst the Thuesons. This playtime also provides lasting family stories and memories.
- Set Work Boundaries: I have a great job where I have the freedom to work from home. BUT it is really easy for me to get caught up with work, and before I know it, hours have gone by, and my kids have been on devices all afternoon! I have been working hard to fix this bad habit, taking the time to turn work off the minute my kids walk through the door. I ask about their days, get hugs and snuggles and find a way to spend some quality time with each child. This is one of the best things about working from home. My family’s needs are more important than anything else. Sometimes I need to remind myself of this one.
- Set Up One on One Dates With Your Kids. This is one of my favorite things to do. I love surprising my kids by picking them up from school for lunch. I take them to the restaurant of their choice and then take them back to school after a little one-on-one time. Even when we couldn’t afford lunch out, I would pack and take them to a park for a bit. They don’t care about the where – they are more excited by the WHO! Now that my kids are older and in High School, scheduling is trickier, but I still make an effort to set aside the time. It may not seem like it as they get older, but they need my emotional support now more than ever. Each of my children has different needs, and by consistently having one-on-one time with each of them, I have a better idea of what those needs are.
- LOVE your Spouse: Take time to nurture your relationship with your spouse! Your kids need to know that they have parents that love each other and that their home is secure and filled with love. My kids may “act” offended and grossed out when my husband grabs my bum or kisses me. But they need to see that we are still bonkers for each other. We are setting an example for how they should be treated in a marriage – If I am constantly bickering and tearing my husband down, I am showing my son that it’s ok to be treated like that by his future spouse. And mark my words, it is NOT ok! So I choose to hold my tongue and choose to let my actions and words be guided by love for my husband and my children.
- Remember Your Kid/Spouse Is A Human Being: Sometimes, it is easy to forget that our kids and spouse are just that, humans. And humans make mistakes and do dumb things. Most of the time, they had no intention of hurting or offending. It was just that, a dumb mistake. So choose to forgive and let go and harbor no hard feelings. By setting this dynamic of forgiveness and love, you are creating a safe space for your kids and spouse to learn and grow from their mistakes. (Also, they will be more open to forgiving you when you make dumb human mistakes.)
- Have your affairs in order: Knowing that no matter what crazy things may happen, your family will be well taken care of is crucial to have a better sense of peace. I recommend meeting with a professional to discuss your estate planning needs. Make sure that you have a solid plan in place to protect those you love the most.
Creating strong family relationships and a home where peace, joy, and family harmony can reside takes effort. I hope these ideas gave you a chance to reflect and see where you can make some changes within your home. I am by no means an expert. But I offer this general information of what works for our family. Take what resonates with you and feels suitable for you, and leave the rest.
One last thing: Remember to choose is to wake up and love your family!– Love them even when it feels like the last thing you want to do. Because when your family is truly hurting and in pain, and when they are the most unloveable is when they need your love the most.