10 Ways to Bring Your Family Closer Together
Today I’m sharing ten simple ways to bring your family closer together. Whether you have a house full of kids or one on the way. Or whether your parents live with you and your nieces or nephews do too, these ideas will give you a starting point for establishing and maintaining good relationships with the people that live under your roof.
Family is a gift, but sometimes it can feel complicated, especially if there is strife and contention. But don’t give up, rather, lean into what you can do. And starting building habits that will make your family into what you want it to be.
Be intentional with your family
A good, healthy family doesn’t just happen overnight, it has to be nurtured. Just as our bodies need regular food, sleep, and care to stay fit, our family as a whole, needs the same intention and attention as well.
This intentionality means we learn to work together, build healthy habits and boundaries, support each other, try new things, apologize and forgive often, and learn that giving and serving is the highest form of living.
10 Simple Ways to Bring Your Family Closer Together
1. Try New Things Together
A shared experience is fantastic for bringing your family closer together. This can be anything from taking a walk together or trying a new restaurant in your town. It can be a trip to a National Park or a family field trip to the zoo. The point, is to push through the messy and do something new together.
This means, have fun but also be realistic with your expectations. Plan on having a few mishaps, potential spills at the table, or some fussy, tired kids who just want to get out of the car.
If you can embrace the present for what it is, you will find that your outing will create a life-long memory that your family will share for years to come.
2. Support Each other
One of the best things about having a family is that you always have a group of people who are rooting for you to win. With that being said, make a point to be cheerleader for each person in your family.
Whether it means showing up for basketball games, celebrating a good test score, thanking mom for scoring big on a new dessert, or laughing at dad’s jokes. Start building into each other with regular words of encouragement while showing up for the important moments in those people’s lives.
3. Speak well of each other to other people
A quick way to loose trust or break down a family is to talk poorly about a sibling, spouse, or parent to someone else. To avoid this, have a shared consensus that each person in the family will speak well of each member to those outside of the family.
This means you don’t share confidential information like love-interests, embarrassing stories, mess-ups, or failures of family members unless you have permission.
This agreement, fosters a shared respect and shows the highest honor to those we love the most and it allows each person to put their best foot forward into the world.
4. To bring your family closer together, apologize often
And when you share something you shouldn’t have, raised your voice, reacted in anger, said an unkind word, forgot your manners, got impatient…etc… apologize. It’s very freeing in a family to practice apologies and forgiveness as a regular habit.
The simple act of admitting you were in the wrong and working to restore that relationship is foundational to a happy home.
If you are really putting an effort forward to bring your family together, parents should lead by example in this area. If we make it a habit, our kids will learn follow our lead.
5. Eat Dinner Around the Table
Whether you have toddlers or teens, make time to have dinner around the table every night. Sharing a meal is the easiest way to daily reconnect and refresh your relationship with each other.
The eye contact, laughter, tears, conversation, talk of food, and life all happens around the table. It’s a place we can show up to every day and be intentional with our families. Try it for a year and see what happens!
6. Limit Screen Time
Whether we want to admit it or not, screens are a distraction from the relationships around us. Time that could be spent investing into the ones we love is squandered on Instagram, TV shows, video games, and Google.
While screens have their place, we need to be intentional about creating boundaries with our screens that will help us to prioritize our families first.
This can look like no phones at the dinner table, or a docking station where all the phones go when everyone is home. Get creative and put boundaries in place that will work well with your family.
7. Share the household responsibilities
Everyone enjoys having clean dishes to eat off of, and clean clothes to wear. Everyone likes to know where to find things and also have a place to sit and rest.
So, if everyone in the family enjoys these things, doesn’t it make sense that everyone in the family should contribute to the responsibilities it takes to maintain the type of home we all want?
Find a system that works for your family then divide the household responsibilities between each family member. To do this, find age appropriate chores for kids then talk with your spouse about how the other responsibilities can be shared.
8. To bring your family closer together, have healthy boundaries
The family unit goes sideways really quick when boundaries are not in place. These boundaries may include things like fidelity within marriage, methods of communication, handling conflict, limiting screens, as well as, personal self-control.
Boundaries give us a code of conduct. A set agreement of how we want our family to operate. A lot of times these boundaries are unspoken, but they are there. Perhaps, take some time to think through the boundaries you have in place and evaluate if some need to be added.
Note: When boundaries are not kept and toxic issues arise, it’s imperative for families to get the outside help they need to repair their family.
9. Create and celebrate family traditions that bring your family closer together
Another way to bring your family closer together is to create and celebrate family traditions. Traditions set your family apart from other families, and gives you regular things you can look forward to doing together.
These family traditions can be centered around big holidays, or you can make up your own. Maybe you go out to lunch every third Saturday of the month or you make a big deal out of National Donut Day. Either way, embrace your traditions and make them something special for your family.
10. Slow down and enjoy each other
Lastly, to bring your family closer together you need to slow down. It’s hard to draw your family together when everyone is constantly distracted or rushing out the door. Love and relationships need time and space to grow.
You need time to get bored together, go on walks, read books, play legos and tell jokes. You need to make time for cooking together and having hard conversations. Then, before you know it, you’ll be rushing home because its a place you want to be the most.
Bringing Family Together Q & A
1. What activities bring family together?
Some activities that bring family together include: hiking, biking, baking, movies, family read alouds, board games, singing, day trips, dinner around the table, and crafting together.
2. What are ways to improve family relationships?
Some ways to improve family relationships include: honesty, listening, clear communication, spending time together, and being kind.
3. What are the benefits of having a family?
A few of the benefits of having a family are consist stability, love, acceptance, refinement, and togetherness.
4. How do we start having family meals together?
How do we starting having a family dinner together? Schedule a specific time and be intentional about sharing that meal together. It can be take-out from a restaurant or a home cooked meal, it doesn’t matter. The point is to make a family meal together (around the table) a priority and stick with it.