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Strong family bonding is key to promoting a healthy self-image and sense of belonging in boys.

With so much going on in our lives, it can sometimes feel like we live with strangers. Although as adults we may have the coping mechanisms to maintain our sanity, it’s not so easy for developing children.

It can be hard to prioritize bonding time when so many other things seem so important. The stress of paying the bills, pursuing career goals, or keeping the kids active is often prevalent. This leaves the emotional needs of your child abandoned in the chaos.

Here are 5 simple ways you can integrate bonding in your family’s lifestyle:

  1. Make the boring tasks fun, and do them together!

Chores and mealtime need not be a source of stress, instead they can be an opportunity for great memories. Have your child help out household activities that are necessary for your family. It will not only give him a sense of purpose, but he will get to spend more time with you as well.

“I like hugs and I like kisses,

But what I really love is help with the dishes!”

(Author Unknown)

  1. Eat Together Regularly

It is commonly known that dining together as a family is a good idea, but for many of us, that is just not realistic. If eating dinner nightly together is not an option for your family, get creative with it! Even dining one night together a week will create lasting memories and impact on your child. Engage a Friday pizza night, or don’t limit yourself to dinner – Sunday morning breakfast, Saturday lunch, or even a weekly outing for a treat like frozen yogurt can suffice. The key is to be consistent.

“Using data from nearly three-quarters of the world’s countries, a new analysis found that students who do not regularly eat with their parents are significantly more likely to be truant at school. The average truancy rate was about 15 percent throughout the world on average, but it was nearly 30 percent when pupils reported they didn’t often share meals with their families.”

  1. Leave written messages or notes

Written communication is a lost art, but such a powerful way to bond with other human beings, especially your child. Don’t let your communication be just a series of texts behind a screen, put it on paper and let your child know he is worthy of your attention. Don’t overdo it, but a small encouraging note, or even a funny picture or drawing for the younger kids, can go a long way. It will let them know you are thinking of them, and make them feel closer.

  1. Learn a new skill together

We always have room for new skills, and squeezing in a class or event here or there is not too difficult to achieve. It could be anything from a hour-long ceramics class, to a beginning scuba diving course – no matter what it is, it will be beneficial to your child. Not only are you expanding his horizons, but you are allowing him to see you in a different state. A state of learning. As you learn together, your child will be able to see you as a human being. Not just a boss. It will deepen your relationship and create a special connection that only learning together can achieve.

  1. Organize your life to create more time.

Are mornings too hectic to enjoy together? Find ways to minimize the chaos by prepping the night before. Are weekends full of errands? See what tasks you can allocate during the week, or hire an errand service for a special weekend. In the next week, take a close look at where your family time is going. See where you can carve out those special moments to add value to your life.

“Also, don’t you think we as parents can limit our own activities like T.V. watching, social networking, or other habits that don’t offer much of family value. Instead prioritize to use the time for family bonding activities?

Remember, that it’s not about the amount of time you spend with your family; instead it’s about how best you spend the time you have. Even if you have 10 minutes, make that time precious for your family.’

Once you prioritize your family, you might find that other stresses in your life lighten up.

We can become so fixated on what “needs” to be done, we can fail to appreciate the necessity for a healthy homelife. Take control of your time, and don’t let precious moments slip away.

woman and three children playing water
Photo by Yulianto Poitier on

Thank you for visiting my site. Let’s connect. I’d love to hear your story. Want more? Check out my latest book. Busting the Boys Will Be Boys Myth: A Guide to Raising Conscious and Confident Men in Today’s World

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