Aleteia

10 Tips on how to cultivate warmth and affection in your family

FAMILY
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What’s more important than building up our family and making those relationships strong?

Warmth and affection are the gifts bestowed on us by the Holy Spirit. Cultivating them inside our family unit involves attributing the same levels of importance, respect and consideration to each. 

1
Imitating Christ’s attitude

Try to see your spouse and children as Christ sees them. It will transform the way you approach them.

2
Avoid unpleasant topics

At dinnertime, banish all the topics that can vex, such as grades at school.  Otherwise, this privileged moment risks turning into something unpleasant, and your children will feel that they are only valued based on how well they do in school.   

3
Pray to keep your cool in fights

When arguing with your spouse, abstain from interrupting him (or her). If you feel your irritation growing, try praying in silence; this will calm you down and prevent you from saying something you may regret.

4
Spend some quality time with each family member

Give time to each of your children and to your spouse. It doesn’t have to be much, but you must be totally there for them. The person treated this way will see how much you value them.  

5
Listen to your children and let them speak out

To better understand what moves your kids, invite them to tell you about their day at bedtime. Your children will feel that you are interested in them and in what they have to say. 

6
Transform your children’s mistakes into a springboard for their success

Use your children’s mistakes as a springboard for their success. Ask them what they can do better next time. This will improve their attitude toward schoolwork and teach them how to assess their own mistakes. People are often surprised by how accurately kids can judge their own performance.

7
Learn how to be thankful

From time to time, organize family meals where each can thank and praise one or the other family member. You can do the same and praise each and everyone for what they do.

8
Give an example in humility

Learn how to acknowledge your own failings and to ask forgiveness. If you know how to be objective, so will your kids.

9
Avoid lies and gossip

Whenever conversation turns to gossip, change the subject.

10
Encourage and congratulate your children

Judge your children based on what they do well and put effort into, instead of their mistakes: it will make them want to do even better.  

 

Florence Brière-Loth

 

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