All too often, people assume that a healthy and loving family relationship happens naturally. In reality, though, relationships within a family need to be worked on and nurtured carefully, just like the happy, healthy relationships developed with romantic partners, close friends, or co-workers.
It is common for people to neglect to provide time and effort to build and maintain healthy family relationships. It is often too easy to allow things like busy schedules, work duties, and social interests that require a great deal of time and energy to distract from needs within a family. Too much focus on outside activities and relationships makes it difficult to give special effort toward cultivating and maintaining essential family relationships. This can make it easy for problems to develop unnoticed and for a family to begin to grow apart. If your family is experiencing issues that require additional support, Orlando Thrive Therapy is an excellent source for counseling in Orlando and nearby areas.
Fortunately, it is not incredibly difficult to strengthen relationships within a family. One of the simplest and highly effective actions that can be initiated is to hold family meetings. This does not mean simply hoping that everyone will be present for dinner on Thursday night. Instead, it means putting effort into planning a time and place when everyone is available to get together and have a family discussion.
Family meetings are a great time to catch up on what has been going on with all family members and to work out the everyday hassles that may have arisen within the family unit. It is vital to keep these meetings fun and enjoyable, but equally important for the family to agree on some basic ground rules. Effective family meetings do require that everyone in the family unit be present. Keeping things civilized by agreeing that only one person is allowed to speak and avoiding name-calling, yelling, accusing, or blaming is also crucial to making the meeting a success. Working together as a team to iron out any family issues, problems, and plans will help to bring the family closer together. Meeting twice a month is often an effective schedule for many families.
For really busy families, another practical way to strengthen those ties is to spend some relaxing, quality time together. That might mean simply agreeing that everyone will sit down together for dinner one night each week. Another great option is to schedule a weekly family game night with no TV or phones, so there are no distractions to enjoying one another's company.
Life today is often hectic, but making an effort to give family members more personal attention can pay off in huge ways. Spending just a few minutes each day to catch up with a spouse or children can keep one informed on what is going on in other’s lives and make it possible to fix minor issues before they become significant problems. It can also make it easy to identify when a family member is going through struggles that they cannot cope with and assist them in getting the help they need to remain healthy and happy. Visit orlandothrivetherapy.com to arrange counseling in Orlando when a bit of extra help is required to keep those relationships thriving.
Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.