The excitement and overwhelming emotion you feel after being newly married or welcoming your new-born child can be a strong drive for wanting to put your family first and giving them your best. You are confident that you will always feel empowered to be the best spouse or parent.
However, that emotional high will not last forever and the duties which you once fulfilled with much enthusiasm soon seem a little less enjoyable. Your family may seem fine and functioning but there’s just that little bit missing – the joy and meaning which is brought about by fulfilling relationships.
Essentially, a family is like a canoe which must be steered, or it won’t take you where you want to go. If you get married or have a child without a working plan for your family’s journey, you will inevitably “drift” apart over time.
TOUCH Integrated Family Group shares some practical ways you can explore to be more intentional with your family.
BE PRESENT AND ENGAGED
We know it can be taxing to be fully present and engaged with your family after a long day at work. But doing so enables your loved ones to know that they are valued and important. This helps build trust and love in your family, thereby strengthening familial ties. Remember, you may feel tired in that moment, but the rewards of a close family bond will keep reaping for many years to come.
ENCOURAGE YOUR SPOUSE DAILY
Do not underestimate the power of words and building others up. Hearing from you that they have done well does wonders in affirming your spouse and draws both of you closer. Try praising or encouraging your spouse at least once daily. It could be praising them for preparing a homecooked meal or something as simple as telling them how lovely you think they look. Doing so also reminds you about why you love and appreciate your spouse.
CREATE FAMILY RITUALS
Putting in place family rituals like weekly special dinners with the family, celebrating special occasions or even telling your children nightly bedtime stories can help shape your family and make your relationships more satisfying!
QUALITY ONE-ON-ONE TIME WITH YOUR KIDS
Each child is precious and unique. If you have two or more children, try working on more intentional one-on-one time with each child. Take your child on an outing or for a special meal and make sure to give them your undivided attention (keep those mobile phones away). This one-on-one time makes your child feel special and they are more likely to open up to you during this time. You will be surprised by how much more you can learn about them as individuals!
DON’T LET ANGER CONTROL YOU
Anger is a natural emotion and it is completely normal for us to feel it at times. However, how you choose to express your anger can affect your loved ones. Instead of giving in to anger during conflicts with your spouse, and making unwise choices, make it a point to count to 10 in your head, calm down and speak firmly but objectively. If you’re still too overwhelmed, let your spouse know that you need some space and you can take up the conversation again another time. Confront your conflicts out of love, not anger and spite.
With these guiding principles in mind, you are now one step closer to building your Intentional Family!
Want to know more about parenting, marriage or need any family-related support? Contact TOUCH Integrated Family Group at 6709 8400 or click here to find out more.
TOUCH Integrated Family Group (TIFG) aims to equip families with resources to face multi-faceted issues at different life stages. TIFG focuses on providing Resources to equip families to cope with different stressors, enabling families to strengthen Roles in transitions, and empower families to build Resilience. This is done through an integrated suite of services to support the family as a unit, with emphasis on education, intervention and advocacy.