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Creating Rituals for Family

August 11, 2017

The free and easy schedule of summer has ended as families send their kids back to school. Creating healthy routines is a great way to start and end the day on a meaningful and mindful note.

Research from the American Psychological Association’s Journal of Family Psychology tells us that rituals are powerful anchors in our family’s life. They offer stability in our fast paced world of dynamic change, stress, and uncertainty. Rituals offer our children better health, higher academic achievement, and stronger family relationships.

Routines can become a ritual once it changes from “what needs to be done,” to a symbolic and more meaningful act — left as an imprint for generations to come.

Here are some tips below to create routines for foundations of a family ritual:

  • A little exercise. Get up in the morning with your kids and get them involved with a little exercise around the neighborhood. Talk the family dog for a walk. Take a quick trip to a local park and jog with your kids. Chat about goals and things all of you are looking forward to the day.
  • Early morning chore. Have your kids involved in mini-chores like watering the plants or packing lunches for the entire family. Create a chart of to-do tasks that rotates responsibilities. These chores should take less than 10 minutes to complete.
  • Schedule time for study. Put aside a couples hours a day to help and supervise your children with their homework. Provide them with the same amount of attention you want them to put in their homework.
  • Meal time is family time. Turn off the TV, cell phones, and computers. Dinner time is nourishment time for the body and soul. From preparing the food to clean up, center family time around this human ritual. Be open to communications, conversation, and laughter.
  • Family “unwind” time. Before bed, play board games with your family, go for a family outing or treat them for ice cream. Family time is a great moment to reward each other from the hard work for the day. Ask questions about what did they learned and what what obstacles they faced that day.

Following these ideas for daily family routines will help you and family develop strong family rituals to pass down from generations to come.

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