Good Family Qualities

Much has been written about the sorts of qualities parents need to embrace for the development of strong and healthy families. 

In her excellent book What Kind Of Child Are You Bringing Up (SNP Publishing Pty Ltd, 1997), Kerry Frost lists the following;

  • Communication
    Strong and healthy families have good communication between all members of the family.  They talk about the events of their lives, the achievements and schedules, the plans and shopping lists.  They share their ideas about how to approach things.  They spend time doing things together.  More than this, individuals talk to their parents and siblings about feelings.  The expression of feelings both positive and negative must be encouraged.  By ridding our bodies of destructive emotions we leave room for joy and happiness to flourish.  Boys, girls, mums and dads all need the opportunity to talk about their feelings.  Children learn from an early age to use a clearing process for their feelings and thereby lessen their stress and anxiety levels.

  • Problem Solving 
    Being able to solve problems and think laterally will assist everyone in all areas of life.  Students will perform well both academically and informally if they are able to move into a problem–solving mode rather than remaining stuck in fear and anxiety.  Young people who grow up in a family that routinely involves all members in working towards solutions to problems will be less anxious and will deal with stress better.

  • Rules and Expectations 
    Healthy families have rules and expectations for all members.  Underlying these rules is respect for each other and others’ property.  Rules change as each child develops and the consequences for breaking the rules also change.  This makes the transition to the adult world much easier.

  • Conflict Resolution 
    There are various ways to resolve disputes.  Often parents have had less than appropriate models in their own upbringing and need to re-learn how best to deal with conflict.  Satisfactory outcomes usually result from a process that enables all involved to express their feelings and viewpoint.  Once this expression takes place it is possible to move into forming a solution that meets most of the needs of those in dispute.

  • Compassion and Understanding
    Bad things happen to good people.  This statement is a powerful message that will help young people develop a positive attitude towards misfortune and suffering.

  • Hugging 
    Physical touch is essential from the moment children are born.  This means plenty of affectionate hugs that demonstrate love and esteem.  Healthy and happy families are not embarrassed about the intimacy involved in hugs.

  • Ability to see Positives
    In all situations, you can focus on the negatives or the positives.  It helps all involved particularly children to routinely seek positive aspects rather than waste energy and time on stress and anxiety.

  • Celebrations 
    Children need to feel that their achievements are recognised.  What better way than to have a family celebration that instils a sense of fun and humour into families?  Families that come together for free and unstructured time support each other and value this time.

  • Flexibility 
    Strong and healthy families are flexible and adaptable.  The uniqueness of each member is recognised and valued.  Frequent family outings provide fun and laughter.

So, how about calling a family meeting to discuss some of the above ideas?

Page last updated: Thursday, 7 September 2017