The more immediate family members surround you, the more this should take precedence above any other ambitious pursuits in your life. These are people that stick with us through thick and thin. They rejoice on our successes and are a source of motivation during troubled times. We tend to take our family relationships for granted.
Surprisingly, for some people, family connections can be the first thing they sever the moment they feel stressed and anxious. This leaves their closest family members in bewilderment as to the sudden change in behaviour.
As we spend more time working from home, it is important that we maintain a positive atmosphere around the house. This becomes more critical the more people you are living together with (i.e. your children, parents, and in-laws).
Here are some measures to elevate the mood and maintain harmony under the roof:
Tip #1 – Give personal space
Everybody needs quiet time. It is a means of relaxation and helps provides clarity. If there are minimal people at home and you have the space, consider devoting one room in your house for this. The idea is when a person goes into this room, they do not want to be disturbed for a period of time. If there are too many people around the house, consider going to a park. Let’s others know when to expect you home so they don’t worry.
Tip #2 – Thank you
Make it a point to express gratitude to a family member that has done something for you or for the family in general. It can be for something as simple as taking out the trash to more effort and time-consuming tasks like cooking for the family and doing the laundry. Even the simplest tasks at home can annoy people so letting someone know that you’ve noticed and appreciate it goes a long way.
Tip #3 – Contribute
Saying “thank you” alone and expecting others to complete tasks at home can lead to some heated conversations. Do your part but do it without expecting a “thank you” so that when you do receive it, it becomes a bonus. Better yet, make some tasks at home your personal responsibility. Keep it balanced between easy and hard. Aim to do it before anyone else does.
Tip #4 – Look Out for Each Other
Stress can slowly eat away at you. It’s important for people at home to call it out when they notice anything amiss about your behaviour. Make it a point not to get annoyed when they do. Don’t give them the silent treatment. Be honest if you need some space. Not everything needs to be discussed immediately. Say you’re sorry if you stepped out of line. Mind your surroundings if you think an argument is around the corner.
Tip #5 – Do Things Together
As much as you need time apart, the opposite is also true. Find common interests that the entire family can bond over. This could be something you do indoors or outdoors. The idea is to have fun and laugh together. Share stories and personal feelings. Reminiscence together. It is said when people understand each other very well, words are no longer necessary. I agree to that statement with exceptions. We are social creatures; we can only keep mum for so long before we go insane.
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