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Relationships Sundays

Immediate Family Relations

How to Strengthen Family Relationships

If there's one thing in life we don't get to choose - it's family. For better or worse, they're the people we eat with, live with, grow with, and exist alongside for the better part of our childhoods. Even as adults, while we may not physically spend time side by side, family remains a key part of our lives.


But existing together doesn't mean we get along, or even enjoy each other's company. In fact, family relationships should never be passively assumed or relied on. They must be active, continual, and consistently strengthened.


Strengthening family relationships starts by acknowledging that we cannot take each other for granted. Tempting as it may be, it's simply detrimental to just assume a family member's presence or role in your life. As much as you can, look around you and take note of the gifts you've been given and the opportunities you have to make the most of the family around you.


Additionally, remain kind to each other. As family, you know each other's faults better than almost anyone - but you also know each other's strengths. Celebrate them. Don't leave things left unsaid, and take every opportunity you can to speak them to each other. 


Finally, spend quality time together. Not just being in the same house, or at what is technically the same location - spend quality time talking, connecting, and sharing together a life that you live together.


You can't choose your family, but you get the choice to love them - and doing it well will give you returns like nothing else in life will.

Recommended Book

Healing Family Relationships

Jun 16, 2020
ISBN: 9781493424900

Interesting Fact #1

The current median age for a first marriage is the highest in modern history - 29 for men and 27 for women.


Interesting Fact #2

The average American woman has 1.9 children.


Interesting Fact #3

Almost 45% of people between 18-29 have a step sibling.


Quote of the day

Being a family means you are a part of something very wonderful. It means you will love and be loved for the rest of your life.

- Lisa Weed

Article of the day - Ways to strengthen family bonds

Today's families are busy. Schedules are filled with work, school, after-school activities, community service, doctor's appointments, and more. It can be challenging to find quality family time and increase bonding between family members. Building a family that supports and encourages one another takes energy and time. Try these tips to strengthen the bonds within your family.

  • — Be kind to one another. Kids learn through experiences and modeling. Show acts of kindness in everyday life like opening the door for someone, putting away dishes without being asked or by hugging mom or dad when he or she gets home from work.

  • Eat dinner together. Meal time is an excellent place to share your day with your family. The dinner table should be a time where open communication takes place. Congratulate each other on accomplishments and encourage those who had a bad day. Kids who regularly eat meals with their family have higher academic scores and reduced use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs use.

  • Experience life together. Do things as a family. Go for a hike, bike ride or attend a concert. Kids who participate in activities with their family have a higher sense of belonging and higher self-esteem.

  • Enjoy a family game night. Invite friends over for a potluck. Play interactive games with the kids. Make up teams of boys against girls or kids against parents, and promote friendly competition. Surrounding your family with like-minded families promotes community.

  • Laugh. Laughter is good for the soul. Share a funny video or story with your kids just to hear them laugh. Encourage your kids to share stories that make them laugh. Laughing reduces stress and stimulates your immune system.

  • Travel. Plan a trip together as a family. Choose a destination for your adventure that offers something fun for everyone. Experience new things like foods, culture or activities. If you’re on a budget, plan a camping trip.

  • Show appreciation. A simple “thank you” goes a long way. Showing appreciation of family members makes them feel valuable. Surprise a family member with a note of gratitude for things they do that make your life more enjoyable.

  • Try new things. Trying new things can be scary at first. Doing it as a family can reduce fear and promote courage to try new things like going on a roller coaster ride, or taking an art class.

  • Volunteer as a family. Serving in your community to help others makes kids feel more connected and socially adept. Caring for those who are less fortunate teaches compassion and empathy for others.

  • Give compliments. Make it a daily practice to say something kind to each person in your family.

Strong families teach us how to function in the world. They provide us with warmth and support to celebrate achievements and to provide comfort during rough spots in the road. Turn off the television and spend time communicating with those you love most. Spending time interacting with members of your family strengthens bonds, builds character and improves self-esteem. Kids thrive where they feel loved. Invest in those who mean the most to you.

Question of the day - What's one thing you appreciate about your family?

Immediate Family Relations

What's one thing you appreciate about your family?