Today’s world is a complicated place. Day to day living can cause stress and anxiety. Because of the wide scope of media coverage we also know and worry about concerns around the globe. These pressures can seep into our home lives and cause tension and conflict. But how can you maintain a peaceful home in the midst of chaos and uncertainty? Following are some ideas…
- Make it a family value that your home is a sanctuary away from the outside world. Our homes should be a place of unconditional love and acceptance where the family can gather and leave the pressures of school and work.
- Although children and adults enjoy having friends and family over, you must set aside time for your immediate family. Having a constant barrage of people coming and going causes tension and stress.
Create a family calendar where all activities can be recorded. Place in a central area and have everyone check it often. This is a successful way to keep down confusion-related stress. Consider reducing activities if you feel they are too numerous. Everyone needs downtime to recharge physical and emotional batteries.
Make quality time a priority. Turn off the television, radios, and phones and spend time talking and interacting with one another. Family dinners are a perfect opportunity for undivided attention. Let everyone know their opinions are valued down to the youngest child in the home. Ask each family member to share a “high/low” of their day.
- Speak openly and honestly about what is going on in your lives. Don’t assume family members should just ‘know’.
- Talk about feelings and family issues. Keep an open mind if opinions differ. Don’t interrupt when someone is speaking. Hear them out and ask for clarification if you do not understand.
- Do not place blame. Everyone is responsible for how they feel and behave. Don’t blame someone else for making you react a certain way. It is up to you to control your temper and conduct.
- Control the tone and volume of your voice. Keeping voices at a conversational level helps maintain respect and lessens drama. Remember, it’s not only what we say but how we say it that makes a difference.
Include as much humor into your lives as possible. It reduces stress and helps to maintain a worldview that is not so serious. Be sure, though, it is humor that is free of ridicule and mockery.