6 Ways to Be An Effective Family Unit

effective family unit walking on the beach

There are times of the year that we are not an effective family unit and it feels like we are all going in different directions.  For us, as parents, this can be due to tiredness, stressful work situations, stressful life situations or simply that we are just not coping at that moment in time with the demands of a busy life.  Children also have times that they do not cope as well as others which could be because of issues at school, friends, growing and life changes or just simply because they didn’t get Coco Pops for breakfast.  Regardless of what is going on, there are times that the family unit doesn’t function as well as others and we just don’t fit together and resolve or work through things as well as we should.  There are times that we are clashing with each other, we snap more, are more impatient or we just can’t see eye to eye on situations.effective family unit holding hands

During these times it is important to try and remember that these moments usually do pass and don’t last forever.  Sometimes they last longer than other times but often if we apply some simple methods we can weather the storm and continue on our way as a strong, effective family unit.  It is not unnatural for these times to occur.  It really is quite difficult for many different personalities to live under the one roof and cooperate and see eye to eye all the time.  There are going to be fights or disagreements or times of negativity.  This is all normal parts of being a family but there are ways that we can try to stay together and work through it.  Here are some ways to be a more effective family unit:

  1. Trying to Understand Each Individual.  This is definitely one I sometimes struggle with as I often forget that my son is not like me and handles situations differently to me.  I also need to remember that my daughter doesn’t respond well to a loud, angry voice but more rational talking and a softer approach.  Sometimes if my husband is in a bad mood just leaving him for 10 minutes sorts the problem out instead of getting annoyed at him having time out.  We all react and respond differently when things are going on in our lives so taking a few moments to try and remember how people handle things and a bit of understanding may help lessen the conflict.  It may not stop the conflict but it may not escalate to the point it may have.  Listening to each other and spending some time as a family helps build on our understanding of each other.Effective family unit walking on the beach
  2. Take time out for each other or as a family.  Our lives these days are full with loads of commitments.  Each week try and spend some time to connect with one another.  Some weeks are harder than others but even if it is over the dinner table with the television turned off, spending time connecting and listening to each other can help remember what is important and help to connect on some levels, even if not on all.  If our minds are filled with other commitments or stresses this small window can still let the family know we are still there for each other and how we all are is important.
  3. Communicate with each other.  This can be really tricky some times and when you aren’t connecting as a family communication is usually the first thing to go.  If you or your partner are going through a tricky time just communicating to say you just need some time out or some time to yourself, or just mentioning you might be a bit distant or quiet this evening.  Communicating with each other can let the other person know you just need some space and that it isn’t about them.  Sometimes just a few words can really go a long way in avoiding conflict or issues later down the track.
  4. Have some time apart.  Sometimes having a small amount of time apart can make a huge difference and you can reconnect with a fresh mind.  Organise a play date for the children to spend time with their friends, a day with grandparents, or a babysitter for you and hubby to go to the movies or dinner.  Split up and spend one on one time with some of the children and then swap. Have a girl or boys night with friends or simply go for a walk in the bush.  Allow the children some time to themselves in their bedroom.  Sometimes giving each other some space just for a short time means we can come back feeling better and perhaps be able to start the communication going again.
  5. Remembering that this time will pass.  At many points in life, it is important to remember that that moment won’t last forever.  It doesn’t always mean that it will get easier before it gets better but when it feels too much or things are goineffective family unit mother and daughter cuddlingg well, usually they have a way of sorting themselves out.  Sometimes in these moments, it is important to remember to put it down to a bad day, a bad week or it could be a bad few months.  Staying positive and mindful that it won’t be like this always helps us regroup and refocus on getting things back on track.  Of course, there are times when this isn’t the case and further help would be needed in those situations.
  6. Love and Loyalty.  At the end of the day, the most important thing is the underlying love and loyalty we have to each family member.  It is important that regardless of what happens in our day, week or year our family know that we love each and every member and that we will always be there for each other no matter what.  This is important for both adults and children to feel that sense of security and that even through the not so good times, we are still a family and will always be there for each other.  It is important for all family members to understand there may be rocky patches but that we can all work together.

There are many ways that we can try to reconnect as a family but sometimes we just need a little push to all fit back together and work together to keep the family unit strong.


What do you do to keep the family strong and together?


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  • Reply Catherine @ Ten Thousand Hour Mama 28/07/2017 at 10:13 am

    These are all really good points. Sometimes I catch myself getting frustrated with my kids (and my littlest in particular, who is spirited!). It’s usually because I’m hungry or tired. Then I realize, oh, they’re probably acting out because THEY’RE hungry or tired. It really does help to understand each other!

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 31/07/2017 at 9:26 pm

      Yes it is so easy for everyone to become frustrated and take it out on each other. I know I do too xx

  • Reply Michal 27/07/2017 at 10:55 am

    I think we go through these, without even knowing. I get so stressed out when this happens that I don’t even work out or analyze what is happening, I just go into “fix” mode.

    I’m really greatful for this article, I’m going to save it to come back to when we go through a patch that I can’t understand. And then apply these suggestions. Thank you!

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 31/07/2017 at 9:25 pm

      Oh I hope it is really helpful! It is true, often I am just in fix mode too but it can help taking a step back and seeing it for what it is sometimes. Generally, we are all tired and over it!

  • Reply Sahar 27/07/2017 at 6:03 am

    Wonderful post! You know, I’m super grateful that building a healthy family isn’t out of reach or impossible. Granted it’s hard work especially for those families with difficult circumstances, but for the rest of us, it’s doable. Thank you ❤

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 27/07/2017 at 8:09 am

      Thanks Sahar! Yes, sometimes it is harder than others but if everyone works together and makes the effort it is definitely doable! xx

  • Reply Erin 27/07/2017 at 3:52 am

    This is such a thoughtful post! Trying to understand each other is always so important – I try to remind my husband how we have to see each person in the family’s point of view including the kids.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 27/07/2017 at 8:08 am

      Exactly and that is not easy to do all the time! Even though they are little sometimes they come out with the most amazing things and quite different to what we thought ourselves xx

  • Reply Torche Nash 27/07/2017 at 12:38 am

    You nailed it with this one! I’ve recently taken time off to stay at home full-time and pursue a career from my home office. This has helped us tremendously. Even with smaller children, we can easily forget that they have a voice too. So being able to set out quality time with them really works!

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 27/07/2017 at 8:08 am

      Absolutely! It is so great you have been able to do that. It is important everyone feels vital in the family xx

  • Reply Jenni Petrey 26/07/2017 at 11:15 pm

    All of your points are very valid. We utilise all of your points in our family!

  • Reply Bailey 26/07/2017 at 11:43 am

    I’m so grateful for the family unit I grew up with. It’s so important to have a strong stable family unit.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 10:58 pm

      Glad to hear you had a strong one and yes, it is so important. Thanks for stopping by xxx

  • Reply Connie @Lessons and Learning for Littles 26/07/2017 at 9:51 am

    Great tips! Thank you! I just did the “spend one on one time” with the kids today. Since I’m solo-parenting these days, I sent my oldest to spend the day with my mom and took my youngest out. Both kids had a great time and truly missed each other, which was nice to see too. Great point about the communication too! 🙂

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:00 pm

      So lovely having one on one time, I really feel like you make great connections with them. Lovely they can spend time with your mum too xx

  • Reply Ayana 26/07/2017 at 5:14 am

    These are all amazing reminders!! I go through a time every month (hmm…might be a coincidence…) where I just CANT STAND my husband. I hate it and I try to fight through it every time but then the storm passes (about a week later…hmmm) and things are amazing again. This list will come in handy during those ‘stormy’ times!

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:01 pm

      Oh yes those times definitely happen! And patience at those times is so hard! Hope it helps xx

  • Reply Ayanna @ 21FlavorsofSplendor 26/07/2017 at 5:09 am

    Great tips! We all so through seasons where it seems like our home lives are all out of whack. One thing we do to keep the family strong and together is to have family mealtime. Wheather it is breakfast, lunch, or dinner, sitting around the table together eating helps us to connect.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:02 pm

      That family time is so important. We definitely try to do that too, even sometimes if it is a small connection it is better than none at all xx

  • Reply Maranda Laverdure 26/07/2017 at 4:50 am

    So many great points. Family bonds are so important!! We are a team and if the team does not communicate or know what the other is think, what will happen. Having open relationships with your family is important it teaches communication, trust, and honesty. It will benefit all members immensly

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:03 pm

      It sure will and hopefully, the kids all see this as part of being a strong family unit. I hope as they get older that openness continues! Thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply Candice 26/07/2017 at 12:21 am

    I feel like family time is falling by the way side in society. Makes me sad. In our busy family of 5 people, with 2 that are doing high school sports, we really have to maximize our time together. We always attend church together on Sunday. We have family meals together as often as possible. We also try to have fun together, like play games, go for ice cream, and of course (my kids fave) do chores together.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:04 pm

      Yes the larger the family the harder it can be as they get older. Sounds like you guys really value that time and place it as important which makes such a difference x

  • Reply Corinne 25/07/2017 at 11:45 pm

    I full heartedly agree with this post! My husband has a hard time understanding (sometimes) that we are all different, particularly our kids. One kid needs more support, the other needs more freedom. We also do well when we have a break hormone another, haha. 🙂

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:05 pm

      Oh yes breaks are needed! I totally agree with. My two are quite different and it can be hard remembering that sometimes. So important to try and remember that too xx

  • Reply Ana 25/07/2017 at 11:38 pm

    Communication truly is key in the family unit. Without is total dysfunction and chaos. Great post! 🙂

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 26/07/2017 at 11:05 pm

      Yes! I think it makes for a far less chaotic household! Thank you and thanks for stopping by xx

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