As wives and moms, we have much influence over our family.
We typically establish the mood in the home (or the car).
And we have only a few minutes to set the tone.
Do you want to have pleasant interactions with your family? That first encounter – that first 5 minutes – is very important. Our family members will respond to our positive, affectionate manner just as much as our negative, busy, and frazzled manner.
Here are some tips to create a peaceful, loving atmosphere.
Waking from Sleep:
Be courteous when you wake your children, and be sure you’ve given them enough time to prepare for their day. Greeting them in their room is a matter of connecting with them and making them feel loved the moment they wake. Don’t holler into their bedroom–be present and personal. An alarm clock is impersonal no matter how old they are, which is why my husband, still prefers my voice to the blaring alarm. However, if your child wants an alarm clock to feel grown up and wishes you to stay away, then you may need to do it that way.
How you handle each person will depend on their personality and preferences, whether they are are morning people or take a little extra time to get moving. They may need extra physical touch, or just a quick ‘hello’ and a smile. Figure out the needs of each family member.
Be pleasant at all times – don’t let their mood dictate yours, but vice-versa. Play music that’s encouraging and inspirational, like Christian hits or fast-paced tunes the family loves. Touch them to convey affection, like a pat on the shoulder or kiss to the cheek. Help them if they need something, like finding keys, packing lunches or signing forms. If you need to discuss something negative or correct them, they will generally be in a better mood and more willing to cooperate if they’ve had a pleasant morning.
Arriving home (or when you arrive, if they beat you home):
Meet your family member at the door if you can, and greet them with pleasure (be happy to see them). Make time for them. Before you tell them to do something, ask them specific questions about their day. You don’t have to have a 10 minute conversation. If someone is watching TV, wait until a commercial or until the show is over so you can focus on each other. If your child is doing homework, seek him/her out to talk. If they need to discuss something bothering them or exciting them, give them your full attention and offer praise/encouragement. This conveys they are a priority and will set a positive tone for the rest of your afternoon/evening.
After an activity:
When you pick up your children from somewhere, focus on them immediately, not your phone or the radio. You are not merely a chauffeur–you are Mom. Make eye contact and ask them about the activity: what did they learn, how much fun did they have, which friends were there. Show that you’re interested in them. Moms are busy and it’s easy to forget to connect with our kids on the small levels. But your family members are a priority, and parenting is relational. If you do these things, your children (and spouse) will feel loved and appreciated, which builds trust and affection. And you’ll find your efforts will make your home more peaceful!
What are some ways you see your mood affect your family? What steps are you taking to create a more peaceful home?
(originally posted on momsoffaith.com)