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Mother Theresa said, “Love begins at home, and it is not how much we do. . . but how much love we put into that action.” With busy schedules and hectic days, it can be difficult to find the time to show genuine love to those within our immediate family. Oftentimes, those people whom we love the most are those who feel our love and kindness the least. They are often the recipients of our harsh words and critical judgments because they tend to see us at our worst.
So how do we change things? If arguing and contention is at the heart of our home, how do we train ourselves and our family to focus on love, making love the heart of the family, instead?
Change may not be easy and the results may not be quick, but by implementing these 5 habits into your family’s activities, you will find that focusing your family on love might just be easier than you thought. You’ll also be making memories as you do it.
- Compliment. Teach your children to compliment one another and make sure you are giving compliments to your children. Buy each child a package of post-it-notes and challenge them to once a day write a compliment and stick it somewhere for a family member to find. For younger children, they could draw a picture or you could help them write their note. Leave your own notes for your children to find. If this doesn’t work for you, each night at the dinner table go around the table and have each person say something kind about everyone else. If you catch someone doing something good, tell them and teach your children to do the same. If you are constantly making it a point to look for the good in one another, there will be less focus on the bad. There will be more love and less arguing.
- Serve: It is difficult for a person to serve without feeling an increase of love for the person they are serving. If you want an increase of love in your family, focus your family on service. Service inside the home can include siblings helping one another with chores, helping with homework, working together on a project, children serving parents by helping with dinner, setting the table, making one another’s bed or weeding the yard together. There are many opportunities for service within the family.