Get the Family Together with Rituals and Routines
As we and our kids get older, grow up, evolve our interests, and change in varied ways, it can feel like tough work keeping the family together. Not to mention that our work lives and schedules are more hectic today than ever before and school is back in session.
Because finding time to spend with your family is becoming increasingly challenging, many people look for a way to bring their family together but just don’t know where to get started. The best way to achieve consistent family time is to implement a ritual or routine.
When most people here the term ritual, they might think about religious events. While the term ritual can have a religious connotation, it really means a consistent series of action that are taken repeatedly. And in today’s over-stimulated, ever-distracted times, rituals can do a lot for keeping your family together, talking, happy and “unplugged!”
Most people are unaware that they have family rituals, but believe it or not they are central to our society. Think about it–every year like clockwork we gather our families together for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other important holidays. But instead of only using a ritual once a year, it's important to integrate them into our weekly lives.
The best part? They don’t have to be expensive. A quality family ritual can consist of set days of the week where the family spends time together cooking meals, enjoying outdoor activities, or just spending time together. For example, you could take a walk every evening with your family and your dogs, if you have them. You can walk any where from 30 to 90 minutes, using the time to get a little exercise and catch up about the day.
These types of rituals are especially important if you have little ones in your family, because children need the stability of routine. It makes them feel safer, securer, happier, and it reduces the stress and anxiety of unknowns that lie outside of their small comfort zones.
For adults, on the other hand, a ritual can be the perfect antidote and reprieve from a stressful day at work. It will help serve as the carrot on the end of the stick that will help you get through stressful work situations and make your life more balanced.Whether you commute or work from home, implementing a ritual will still help you relax at the end of your work day and disconnect from the 'office' that may be just a few feet away. Spending time together with your family regularly preparing and eating meals, playing games, or enjoying leisure time together is very cathartic, and it will help minimize your stress levels.
No matter how busy your life is, make the time for a ritual to strengthen the bonds between your loved ones.