Perfectly Imperfect Family:
Mom and Dad, Let Me Tie the Shoelaces This Time
Translated from: 不完美者的美好家庭：爸媽，這一次換我為你們繫上鞋帶
To you who are now reading this article, whatever is your background, I am certain that you must have plenty of experiences being taken care of by a father, mother, or any primary caregiver as well as spending time with this person. In other words, we are without an exception someone’s child. Some of us may oftentimes be in a relationship full of conflicts while some others may enjoy a satisfying relationship. Yet, why is it that some people get along so well with their caregivers whereas others do not? For those of us who have rarely experienced a happy and healthy parental relationship and yet have become parents ourselves, how should we adopt the changes that will have significant impact on our relationship with our kids?
Today, I will be sharing with you three effective tips to maintain our family relationships in the hope that they bring transformational changes to our families.
Tips for Maintaining a Happy Family
Tip No.1: Active Listening during Conversations
A report released by the University of Delaware (‘Building strong family relationships’, n.d.) notes that active listening requires the listener to set aside all distractions (e.g. smartphones, television, and work) and pay full attention to the speaker. Concurrently, don’t jump to conclusions hastily before the other person finishes what he or she intends to say. That is to say, a healthy way of communication should be focused on the “You” rather than “I”. Think of the times when someone keeps cutting off our lines. Pretty distressing, right? Then, don’t be the one who indulges in the behavior at home!
Tip No.2: Communicating through Positive Languages
It is very common to experience conflicts in a family relationship due to misunderstandings or disagreements in opinions, but what exactly is your reaction upon such conflictual situations? Becoming grumpy? Talking in contempt? Negating the other person? Irrespective of the ways adopted, they are all very detrimental to the relationship. Sometimes, we may say, “Hm…perhaps let’s just not talk about the problem at all then?” This cold violence, however, increases the anxiety and nervousness within the relationship even though we have not said any harmful words. It also leaves a mark on the parent-child relationship. Experts have suggested, therefore, that instead of scolding, blaming or retorting the other person, to have a pleasing family relationship requires the positivity and encouragement between family members (Peterson, 2009).
Tip No.3: Spending Intimate Time Together
As we get busier and busier with the advancing era, we seem to have less time for our families. Sometimes we get so busy at work or are accustomed to hang out with our friends and peers that we leave little intimate time for our family. I have long discovered that Asian kids, especially youngsters in Taiwan, are so busy cramming after school that they rarely have the chance to eat a nice meal with their parents. Even if they do dine together, both sides often spend time scrolling their smartphones as if they have nothing to do with one another. Having said that, a research by the University of Michigan points out that when kids spend more family dinner time with their parents, they are more confident, capable of articulating themselves, and healthier in their eating habits (Barker, 2014). Furthermore, they exhibit far less drug addiction, smoking, and alcohol abuse behaviors (Barker, 2014). Wherefore, if you are already a parent yourself, try to spend more intimate time with your kids at the dinner table. If you happen to still enjoy your parents’ presence, please don’t be stingy with your time.
Now, you may be wondering why I am writing a paragraph on family relationships. Isn’t MACHIEN a shoelace brand? Indeed. Please allow me the honor to review our brand philosophy with you:
Shoelaces are the connected relationships between humans. It is a tie that binds together the affection, confusion, disruption, protection, as well as the parting within each relationship. MACHIEN places humanity first and truly believes that only by enjoying our lives in positive and healthy relationships will we be able to give with respect and love.
Due to our corporate value, we seek to help transform both yours and our interpersonal relationships through our shoelace products and online columns. Although we stumble and fall each day in our relationships, we also learn and grow from each setback, and I encourage you to join the line of growth. I hope that this article will help make a difference in your parent-child relationship as well as become the turning point of your relationship with your parents.
Ready to start your journey as a blessing in others’ lives?
Mom and Dad, let me tie the shoelaces for you this time!
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