How to Be Peaceful at Home
Do you look at other families and wonder why yours seems so much more chaotic? Is your bustling home a far cry from the serene picture that you had of family life? Making a peaceful home isn’t impossible. But with life being as crazy as it is today, having a quiet space to call your own and share with family can at times be a bit difficult.
- Peace at Home: Keeping Quiet Spaces
- What Does Peace Mean to You?
- Peace at Home Means Making Time for Different Activities
- For a Peaceful Home, Be Active During the Day
- Peace at Home Begins with Common Courtesy
- Want a Peaceful Home? Offer Respect and Benefit of the Doubt
- Avoiding Unnecessary Conversations Helps Keep Peace at Home
- Limit Screen Time, Keep a Peaceful Home
- Peaceful Activities to Replace Screen Time
- Pets Bring Peace to Your Home
- Evening Yoga for a Peaceful, Restful Bedtime
- Peaceful Home: What to Do When Conversations Become Confusing
- Prayer and Brings Peace to the Family Home
- What Does a Healthy Diet Have to Do With Peace at Home?
- Making Peace at Home Starts With You
Peace at Home: Keeping Quiet Spaces
Do you look at other families and wonder why yours seems so much more chaotic? Is your bustling home a far cry from the serene picture that you had of family life? Making a peaceful home isn’t impossible. But with life being as busy as it is today, having a quiet space to call your own and share with family can at times be a bit difficult.
Why is it important to have a peaceful home?
Peacefulness and respect for each other go hand in hand. Home is space that we share with loved ones, family members, and friends who are important to us. One of the greatest gifts that we can give those to whom we are close is the gift of peace.
Peace helps us reduce stress. With all of the pressures of daily life, it’s important to turn down the intensity now and then. A peaceful home serves as a place to relax and unwind. Trading busyness with relaxation, noise with quiet, and social activity with quiet solitude is one of the best ways to lower cortisol, decompress, and give your body some down time to recoup and recharge.
A peaceful home helps us sleep better. Many people have trouble falling and staying asleep due to being over-stimulated in their daily lives. Technology brings with it a sense of constant change – that life has become dynamic and unpredictable thanks to the constant updates. Because of this, it’s extremely important to cultivate peace and quiet in our home lives to counter the constant rushing and stress.
What Does Peace Mean to You?
Peace can mean different things to different people. Generally though, when we think of peace, we think of a calm scene. The picture might include a tidy space free of clutter. It might be soft music, or no music at all… or perhaps the soothing sounds of nature.
Are we alone in our peaceful scene? For many people, being by ourselves brings a sense of peace. We can relax and go with our own inner flow. We don’t have to converse with or coordinate with others, which can often feel like work, and stress.
If we are with other people, then peace might be the absence of conflict. Peace shared with others might feel like everyone is together, but each doing his or her own thing. Just chilling out, and not getting ruffled about anything in particular. Not feeling pressured to talk, explain or defend ourselves, or perform at any given time, could feel like peace to some.
What other words mean peace to some people?
Serenity. Feelings of calm, rest and ease. Absence of expectation or judgment.
Safety. A quiet space to let your guard down and be yourself. A place where there are no threats, either to our physical body or our mental well being.
Freedom. Peacefulness might come from having the freedom to do what you like, when you like. Peace might feel like floating along at a leisurely pace, responding to your own inner whims.
Solitude. Some people consider their alone time a necessary means of finding peace. If you’re something like this, peace to you might look like personal space in which to think, dream, create, learn, or just be.
Quiet, agreeable companionship. Mutual respect and courtesy, living and letting others live.
Harmony. Disagreements without strife. Being able to communicate in a relaxed manner, letting the thoughts flow easily, being okay with whatever is being said.
Relaxation. The opportunity to rest and recharge your battery. Peace, to many people, means getting some time to relax and unwind.
If you’re someone who would like to trade confusion for clarity, calamities for calm, and chaos for quiet in your everyday life at home… then try these tips for keeping the peace in your household.
Peace at Home Means Making Time for Different Activities
Searching for ways to cultivate peace in your everyday life at home? Ironically with life so full of hustle and bustle, the best way to have a peaceful life at home is to make time for it.
Imagine if every day, you had some down time to look forward to where you could simply do what you pleased. What would you fill that time with? Or, perhaps a better question is what would you not fill it with? In some parts of the world, it is commonplace to have a siesta in the afternoon. Local businesses temporarily close up shop. Workers pause their activities to rest and recharge. They might take a nap, go out for a walk, do a bit of reading, or just relax in whatever way feels enjoyable for the time being.
Think about your calendar and the never-ending to-do list that seem to be your daily work. Does having a hopping social life feel peaceful to you? The problem with designating a day for peaceful relaxation is that once you set and follow through on this intention, suddenly it feels like the opposite of being peaceful.
Why is this? It’s because true inner peace means going with your own flow. As soon as someone else tells you, “Okay, today we will make sure to get in some quiet time,” suddenly negative feelings come up. Now it feels like your day’s events are being dictated, which they often are anyway.
So if setting aside time for peace doesn’t feel peaceful, what does? One idea could be to simply leave one day of the week open for whatever you may feel like doing. This is peaceful because you’ve given yourself some room for flexibility.
This way, if you were planning a day of relaxation but suddenly something fun such as a taking a hike through the woods with friends came up, you could opt to make that your peaceful activity. So now, instead of having to resentfully tell that person, “Sorry, I can’t go because we decided to relax and do nothing today,” you have given yourself some freedom of choice, which feels totally peaceful.
For a Peaceful Home, Be Active During the Day
If you’ve ever been cooped up indoors during a winter snowstorm, then you know the feeling of wanting to have a peaceful family home but being challenged at every turn.
Or, perhaps you’re a mom looking to hasten along the winter holiday break from school. What you thought was going to be some relaxing time off from having to wake up early and get the kids out the door each day has now become a bigger challenge.
You’re probably wondering what you can do better to stop the constant bickering so that your family can know what it’s like to experience peace and quiet in each other’s company. In other words: Can’t we all just get along?!
Being home with loved ones can seem like a blessing for… well, perhaps a few hours at most. But the truth is that everyone gets that cooped-up feeling if they’ve been lounging about for a good portion of the day. So what’s the best way to cultivate a peaceful home life? Make sure that everyone in the house finds a way to get their energy out at appropriate times of the day.
Here are a few ideas for activities to engage in so that family members can find peace under the same roof.
Encourage daily exercise. Whether it’s lifting free weights in the basement, popping in a Zumba CD, doing yoga along with your favorite YouTube instructor, or afternoon calisthenics… one of the best ways to help people get along better who live together is for each person to make time for exercise. You needn’t exercise together if that’s likely to cause a problem. Even better if one or more people can head off to the gym for a bit to get a break from others while doing something healthy for their body and mind.
Go outdoors. Even if the weather is cold, rainy or both, you can still put on your outwear and head out for some natural light and fresh air. In fact, many people who suffer from S.A.D. (seasonal effective disorder) are likely to lose patience with live-in family members or house mates when cooped up indoors together for long stretches of time. Relieve your low mood and take some time away from others by heading outdoors. You’ll return refreshed and in better spirits to help maintain that peaceful vibe!
Give each other space. If one person is reading while the other person watches TV in the same room, that can work provided that both parties are comfortable with the situation. But if the person who’s trying to concentrate finds the TV to be disruptive, they should make it a point to vacate the area. It’s simple enough to find a different spot to read in silence and keep the peace at home.
Don’t gorge on junk food. This probably seems like odd advice to read in an article about cultivating a peaceful home. But believe it or not, what we put into our bellies really does have an impact on our mental health. Eating lots of high-sugar, high-fat and processed “junk” foods” definitely affects our digestion. You don’t even have to be in pain to find yourself in a foul temper due to not-so-great eating choices. Sure, it’s okay to have a little snack now and then. But if you do eat chips and sweets, be sure to keep servings small and counter it with healthy veggies and fruits to maintain good digestion and a happy mood. This will definitely help you maintain the peace with other people living in the same house.
Avoid going to bed at extremely late hours. Sometimes families fall into the habit of going to bed too late, especially if the kids are on winter break and don’t have to get up early for school. Vacations, too, might have people heading to bed later than is typical. If it’s your intention to have a peaceful, balanced household of well-rested people who enjoy each other’s company, then keep the good habit of getting some decent shut-eye at night. Just as much as the person who went to bed at 3 a.m. doesn’t appreciate loud noises from members of the household at 11 a.m…. the person who is awake and just trying to live their life during the daylight hours won’t care to be told what to do.
Peace at Home Begins with Common Courtesy
Do you feel like your family home life could be more peaceful? Does it seem like other families know how to keep the vibe calm, while your family members are always up in each other’s faces? One reason why some families manage to cultivate a calm feeling when they’re together is that they have been taught, and live by, the rules of common courtesy.
If rude family members spoil the sense of calm in your household, there are easy enough ways to fix this. The key, of course, is that all involved parties must make a concerted, consistent effort. It all begins with the golden rule, and being kind to one another.
Here are a few common family scenarios where rude behavior gets a complete courteous do-over to put a smile on the faces of all.
Scenario 1: Dinnertime Diss
It’s time for supper. Family members all rush to fill their plates. Big brother gets the last decent-sized piece of chicken. Younger brother pouts and accuses him. Big brother laughs. “You snooze, you lose!” he taunts. Before long, a skirmish has erupted.
All family members make sure that the person next to them has a decent sized serving of food on his or her plate. If someone looks short a portion but you have plenty extra, offer some of yours.
Scenario 2: Bus Stop Bickering
Every day while waiting for the school bus, your kids lightly punch, kick and play-fight each other. Some seem to take this as all in good fun, though the more peaceful natured child of the bunch finds it upsetting and this shows on his face.
Instill a “keep your hands to yourself” rule while waiting for the bus and out in public. If two siblings decide to play-wrestle, it should be clear that both are willing participants. A hand signal such as “palm up” could mean that someone isn’t up for horseplay today.
Scenario 3: Talking During TV Time
Once again, half the family has settled in to watch some TV. The other half is in the same room, but not paying attention to the show. It’s a nightly battle of TV volume versus vocal volume, and far from peaceful.
TV watchers congregate to watch something that all participants agree to in advance. Those who are not watching TV can chat, play video games, read or do work in a separate room. A simple change that makes a BIG difference when it comes to peaceful times at home!
Want a Peaceful Home? Offer Respect and Benefit of the Doubt
Tired of so much drama and strife when it comes to your home and family? Husband and wife disagreeing constantly? Having trouble coming to a compromise on fairly important issues such as child rearing, rules and discipline?
It’s difficult to cultivate a calm and peaceful home environment with so many divisive issues coming up on what seems like a daily basis. You may wonder if peace is even possible unless you concede on some of your most important values and beliefs. Family life can be tricky indeed… far from the utopian vision you had as you said your kidless, starry-eyed “I do”s oh so long ago.
Whether you head into full-on battle mode on a daily basis, or face the occasional seasonal spousal skirmish, one thing is certain. A peaceful home is far more likely if you approach each discussion from the perspective of having basic respect for each other.
What is respect? Respect has to do with value and basic human decency. We show respect for one another by listening, waiting our turn, considering another person’s point of view, offering emotional support, and coming to a compromise on things that we don’t agree on.
Relaxed vocal tone, open body language, neutral and positive facial expressions, and simply listening to what the other person has to say all convey respect – and this is a two-say street that goes a long way for helping us get through difficult conversations.
Disrespect during an argument shows up as contempt – name-calling, blaming, using negative facial expressions and body language, implying or blatantly insulting the other person’s intelligence, refusing to listen, and refusing to compromise.
When disrespect shows up in a normal everyday disagreement, it intensifies the conflict by a lot. You might say that a disagreement has to do with the issue – but a fight makes it personal, and that’s where disrespect comes in. In fact, it’s likely that most disagreements that parents have about family issues and complications of having kids could probably be worked out with little to no issue except when there is clear disrespect by one or both parties during the discussion.
Once it becomes clear that one or both people do not care to listen, have an open mind toward, be sympathetic to, or work with the other party, all negotiations go out the window and a decidedly un-peaceful tone sets the stage for future family dynamics.
If it’s your true desire to have peace in your family and married life, then all-around respect should be the goal. This is about more than just parents respecting each other, but parents also considering how to be respectful of their children as individuals, in the same way that moms and dads might expect that their children show them respect.
One way to reach the goal of using respectful words and behavior is by offering benefit of the doubt. At the root of disrespectful behavior is likely resentment and assumptions based on past experience. So when a married couple seems unable to offer one another basic respect, it’s because one or both parties is negatively interpreting the intentions of the other party. However, if we want to have a truly peaceful discussion, we must approach the issue by offering benefit of the doubt going in.
One good trick for giving benefit of the doubt is to listen to the statement being made, and then “sub out” the person who made the remarks with someone else whom you generally get along with and don’t have a buildup of resentment.
So for example, let’s say that a child is about to throw a mini fit because his mother told him he can’t play hockey after school. If the teacher said the same thing, would the reaction be as severe?
Or if the husband feels a rise of anger after his wife is telling him that it’s time to head home from the party… what if the same remarks came from a friend?
Benefit of the doubt means that we aren’t going into the discussion with negative assumptions. Only then will we be able to offer the respect needed to reach understanding and compromise.
Avoiding Unnecessary Conversations Helps Keep Peace at Home
Searching for ideas on how to have a more peaceful home life? One way to keep the peace between husband and wife, parents and kids, is to avoid unnecessary conversations. People often stress the importance of communication. However, it is definitely possible to have counterproductive communication which adds to our stress levels and definitely does not bring about peace.
When is a conversation necessary, and when can spoken words be replaced by actions? When should you become involved in what someone else is doing, and when is it better to just stay out of his or her business and not say a word?
Of course, this will depend on the unique circumstance and the person or people with whom you’re dealing. But if you’d really like to cut down on the amount of words used, and increase the peace in your home by enjoying the silence, you might do this:
Any time you are about to either ask someone in your house a question or inform them of something, run through this quick list in your mind:
Is the question that I’m about to ask actually helpful?
If I wasn’t here, would the person be able to figure this out on his or her own?
Am I enabling the person by “thinking for them” when I ask this question or make this remark?
Will the person be more likely to learn by experience if I stay quiet?
Is what I am about to ask or say very important, or is it non-essential?
Will my question or statement help this person save time? Or will it waste their time?
If I stay quiet, will I be able to figure out what’s going on without having to use words?
Is now a good time to be asking questions? Or is someone in a hurry, or trying to focus and solve a problem on his or her own?
Consider whether the following scenarios need a question or remark from a bystander, or whether you can “choose peaceful silence” instead.
Your house mate is putting food on a plate. You look at the food. Your question is: “What’s that?”
Would you be able to tell what it is without asking? Is it a piece of chicken and two cherry tomatoes? If you can answer your own question just by simply observing, then save the silence and don’t ask.
Your wife looks tired and worn out from a hard day’s work. She tells a brief story of having trouble getting her client to pay on time. Your question is, “When does the client plan to send the payment?”
Does your partner seem like he or she is in the mood to go into the finer points of what was said and when her client plans to pay? If things are tense or he or she seems wiped, hold your question for now. Say something reassuring, and keep the peace.
It’s the early morning rush to get to school and work. The weather app on your phone reports an 80% chance of rain today. The sky looks dark and overcast. You tell the kids to dress for rain. Your spouse wants to know why you would suggest this. Meanwhile, no one is making breakfast, and time is passing quickly.
Is the question or involvement really necessary? Perhaps your partner can foster peace by staying out of the rain conversation, and instead putting some bowls of cereal on the table for everyone.
These are just a few examples of how we can cut back on counter-productive communication in our homes as a way to maintain a more peaceful environment.
Limit Screen Time, Keep a Peaceful Home
Looking for tips on how to have a more peaceful home? One way is by limiting the amount of electronics or screen time.
This may seem confusing at first. Everyone becomes quiet when they’re in front of screens. You can get things done and hear yourself think. So why would you want to limit the amount of time your kids/family have in front of computers, TVs, smart phones and other electronic devices? Isn’t the screen-time babysitter a Godsend?
The reason why it’s more peaceful to limit screen time has to do with the addictive nature of electronics. Numerous studies have been conducted that show physiological stress responses in people who have been deprived of their phones.
A study of Korean college students measured heart rate and blood pressure of men and women who had their smart phones removed from their person but in close enough proximity that they could still hear the alerts of new messages coming in. All of the respondents experienced heightened excitability, including elevated heart rate and blood pressure, at the sound of their phones but being unable to respond.
Why does this matter? Because if our electronics have us in a state of chronic high-alert, we are more apt to feel heightened anxiety. Anxiety translates to shortness of patience with the people with whom we are currently sharing space.
We are also apt to irritate or insult the people around us by being non-responsive to whatever they’re saying because we’re too distracted by whatever is on the screen.
Another problem of being on electronics for too long is the tendency for obsessive and compulsive thoughts to develop. Studies show that the very nature of computers and the internet, with links that satisfy our every whim and feed the short attention span, seems to bring out OCD tendencies for many people.
Being on computers for too long might have you obsessing over a conversation that took place on social media; could have you arguing back and forth on text; might have you impulsively googling every question that crosses your mind, and get you checking email repeatedly like Pavlov’s dog. None of this is relaxing OR peaceful, and can certainly also take its toll on your in-person relationships if you’re caught at the wrong time and asked to deal with something in the physical, non-computer world.
Have you ever tried to take a child’s iPad away? More likely than not, you were faced with a tantrum, mini meltdown, or at the very least, a scowl- and glare-fest. Moments like these make it very clear that the way to a peaceful home is not by plugging everyone into electronics to just simply ignore each other.
Peaceful Activities to Replace Screen Time
So you’ve realized that everyone’s constantly being attached to computers is not the best way to cultivate a happy, healthy or peaceful household. If you’re looking to fill the day with purpose, engage your family in fun activities that encourage togetherness and inspire creativity, then you might start by making the shift from screen time to fun hobbies and cherished pastimes. Take a look at some of these fun options for making home life both enriching and peaceful.
Knitting and crocheting. Using our hands to make things is one of the best ways to foster a peaceful home life. This works because the repetitive act of making loops with knitting needles or a crochet hook satisfies something in the OCD mind. So if you know that too much screen time has made feel decidedly un-peaceful, then grab your needles or your hook and set to making something cozy and comfy.
Playing cards. Who wouldn’t find a family card game around the kitchen table a peaceful way to pass the time and sharpen your mental skills in the process? There is endless fun to be had with a simple deck of 52 playing cards. Games can be quick and lively, like spit or war… or you can take a more slow and strategic approach, such as with poker. Whatever you do, you’re sure to learn some new things, have some laughs, and foster peaceful, positive feelings.
Board games. Whether you’re a classic board gamer, or you like the novelty of a new game with a trendy, modern spin, there’s no denying that family board games at the coffee table or on the patio on a candle-lit evening can definitely get a lively yet peaceful vibe going among family and friends. How is playing games peaceful? Well, when we satisfy our yen for friendly competition, we can channel that energy and spirit in a positive way. What you have left is satisfaction… and that brings peace.
Baking bread. Want to increase the feeling of peace in your home? Bake some bread. Yes, you can opt to make cookies instead if you like. But honestly, bread is the most peaceful because there is something so grounding in watching the dough rise, using your hands to knead and turn the dough. And the aroma of fresh bread baking in the oven… not many things compare in the peace and comfort department! Well, except maybe taking that first heavenly bite of warm, butter-slathered goodness.
Pets Bring Peace to Your Home
Want more peace in your home and family life? Hoping to increase good feelings, soften harsh words, and fill the silence with kind and loving gestures? Pets bring out the best in many people. If you don’t have a cat or dog, but you’ve got the ideal situation for caring for one, why not bring a shelter pet into your home to deepen peaceful feelings all around?
Truth be told: pets bridge the gap of human communication. Their loving nature and ability to express love without words reaches the depth of our souls. And where we can sometimes fall short when it comes to relating to other humans, pets help us to express ourselves in positive, loving ways.
How are pets peaceful?
Pets seem to love us unconditionally. If you’ve ever gone out for several hours and then come home to find your dog overjoyed, with tail wagging wildly, then you know the peaceful, easy feeling of bonding with a pet. Where humans can sometimes harbor resentment, pets are always ready for love, and they never carry a grudge.
Pets are good for our mental and physical health. Studies show that being affectionate and spending quality time with a furry friend definitely works to lower blood pressure and slow heart rate. When we hug or pet our dog or cat, our brain releases feel-good chemicals which increase feelings of happiness and contentment and this causes physiological changes as well.
Pets have a positive effect on overall wellbeing. Exercising with a pet can ease stress and increase relaxation. When we take a walk or jog with our dog, we’re getting in some good cardio. When we toss a ball around the yard for our dog to fetch, we’re engaging our muscles. Daily exercise of this kind helps us to rid our bodies of tension and increase happy, peaceful feelings.
Pets can help smooth over an awkward moment. If you’ve ever had an argument with a family member, spouse or house mate, then you know the awkward feeling that sometimes lingers for a while after, maybe even for days. People with pets know that they can get past this uncomfortable situation when there’s a cat or dog present to diffuse the tension. Just think, if you can’t muster up words to make peace with your roommate, you can always focus your kind intentions on your furry friend. It won’t take long before the dog or cat does something funny, and gets everyone talking and laughing again!
Sleeping with a pet helps us feel peaceful and contented. If it’s a large dog, we might feel protected at night, which can help to ease anxiety and produce a more restful slumber. If it’s your cat, you can snuggle up under the covers together. The feeling of being close to a warm, furry friend who loves us as much as we love him or her, definitely makes for a peaceful night’s rest.
Evening Yoga for a Peaceful, Restful Bedtime
Hoping to increase peaceful feelings in your household as everyone settles down for the evening? If you have a family, bed time can be anything but peaceful. There’s likely a nightly protest from the kids about getting to sleep on time. There could be arguments over having to put smart phones or ipads away; or maybe someone has neglected to finish homework in a timely fashion.
Or, if you live with a partner, you might have different ideas about what the evening routine should entail in the name of enjoying some peace in the pre-slumber hours. Maybe he or she enjoys turning up the volume on loud, violent movies just as you are settling in with some light reading. Or perhaps your to-do list beckon you after-hours, which is stressful.
If you’re in search of an evening self-care routine to carry you away from the pressures of family life and make the pre-bedtime hours more relaxing, then take a look at this series of yoga poses designed to help you settle down for a more restful sleep.
Practices these poses slowly and in this specific order, taking deep, cleansing belly breaths throughout. Hold each pose for about 6 deep breaths to release tension in the body.
Mountain pose. Stand with feet positioned hip-width apart. Place arms at sides and press shoulders down as you exhale. Inhale through the nose, letting the chest rise as the feet press down into the ground and the top of the head rises proudly skyward. The trick to releasing tension in mountain pose is planting the feet firmly, and imagining the top of the head spiraling to the heavens as you pull your stomach muscles in and breathe deeply.
Forward fold. From mountain pose, sweep the arms overhead and out to the sides. Then bend down as though you were about to touch your toes. You are folded in half at the waist, with head toward the ground. As you breathe through this pose, pull your abdominals in. Hands can dangle freely, or if you’re more flexible you can try to place them on either side, behind the calves.
Downward-facing dog. From forward fold, step backward with one foot and then the other while planting the palms flat on the floor in front of you. You are now bent in half with feet and palms supporting you. This pose resembles a dog stretching. Tummy pulls in as you breathe and imagine pinning your bellybutton to the back of your spine.
Plank pose. Plank is like a gentler version of a pushup. It’s a great pose to relieve stress from the entire body while engaging all of the long muscles. Lower yourself from downward-facing dog into plank pose. Hands are beneath shoulders, pressed into the floor on either side of you. You’re using your chest muscles to support your body. Imagine you are a plank of wood, everything flat and straight, with tummy pulled in and backside tucked downward. Breathe through plank pose, then move on to upward facing dog.
From plank, come into upward-facing dog by placing your body in the prone position (facing the floor) with palms under shoulders, ready to support you. Next, lift only the torso (your hips stay pressed into the ground). Lift your torso, shoulders, neck, chin and face upward while pressing the lower half of your body (hips, front of legs and feet) to the floor. Rest between breaths and then resume the pose again if you need to.
Child’s pose. Come into child’s pose from plank. Sit on your knees, then lower your head to the floor so that your forehead touches the ground. Arms can be on either side, hugging your knees, or stretched out past your head. Focus on elongating your spine, keeping hips pulled back in their sockets and reaching forward with hands if you can.
This series represents just a few of the basic, relaxing yoga poses that you can do to increase relaxation in the evening hours, relieve stress, and sleep better. Not only will you get to sleep more quickly, but you are more likely to stay asleep through the night. And if you do wake up? Try doing some more relaxing yoga.
Peaceful Home: What to Do When Conversations Become Confusing
Do you ever think that half the trouble with trying to have a conversation with family is that everyone is confused and no one is really listening? If it’s your goal to cultivate a more peaceful home life, then you might start by being less confusing, and encouraging others to do the same.
Why are conversations with family members often confusing?
We’re around family all the time, therefore our communication skills tend to become lazy because we just assume that family will hear/understand us. Actually, family members are far less likely to be paying attention because we eventually learn to tune each other out.
Why do family members tune each other out? One reason could be that we get tired of hearing people who we live with repeat the same old stories over and over to different friends. Or maybe we’re weary of listening to the same old arguments. Sometimes we get so good at not hearing each other talk, that when it’s time to pay attention, we have a hard time focusing.
Why else might family members not hear each other? Family members tend to try and talk to each other when someone is in the middle of an activity. So the person who was busy doing something else might just not even be listening.
Another reason family conversations tend to be confusing is that people get sloppy with their manners, and everyone tries to talk at once. Maybe mom is telling that story you’ve heard a thousand times. Or maybe you just had to bring up a funny story to Uncle Jeff who happened to be walking by as your sister was launching into a lengthy diatribe.
Yet another cause of confusing family conversations is multi-tasking. We try to talk while at the same time using the computer, or doing a task like washing dishes or paying a bill on the phone. When our attention is divided, we tend to miss key details. Later on, we relay what we thought we heard, but it’s not accurate.
How to alleviate confusing family conversations to keep the peace:
Have patience with family members. If someone misheard or misunderstands what you say, just simply repeat in a clear voice, without being rude or placing blame.
Make eye contact when someone else is talking. This is the first step in staying engaged in the conversation.
Play a Jedi mind trick – pretend you’re talking to a friend, not a family member. We tend to listen more fully when friends are speaking than when family members have something to say. Perhaps we are trying a little harder to impress our friends, or maybe we don’t have the same resentments going into conversations with friends as we do with family.
Ask questions. Sometimes asking questions can help you get clear on what’s being relayed in conversation. Wait until the right moment before posing your question. Too soon, and you’re not giving the other person a chance to speak.
Don’t interrupt. Family members often get into the bad habit of cutting each other off in the middle of talking. You don’t like it when someone else interrupts you, do you?
Repeat what they say back to them. The best way to get clear on what someone else is saying is to summarize their words to them. This way, if you happen to have misunderstood, they can set you straight.
Once your communication skills are re-sharpened to have productive conversations with family, you can likely expect more peaceful moments and less confusion to follow.
Prayer Brings Peace to the Family Home
Searching for ideas on how to bring more peace to your family life? Prayer is one way to deepen the bond between family members and cultivate a loving, soothing environment at home. How does praying together accomplish this?
Prayer offers hope. Praying as a family reminds us of our shared values, and that we are all in this life together, struggling as we may yet pushing on, encouraged by our support of each other.
Prayer helps individuals be heard, seen and felt. While praying with our children and our partner, we are made aware of what they think about things, what bothers them, what they hope for and what obstacles they face.
Parents and children can set intentions for the family and for each individual. During prayer, we can talk about our hopes, fears and challenges, and define what we would like to happen in our lives.
Prayer strengthens our bonds. Along with healthy, open communication and the sense of trust between family members, when we listen to and ruminate on what family members wish for both individual family members and for the family as a whole, we feel supported and encouraged.
Prayer helps us love more deeply. When we feel loved, the peaceful feelings grow between us as a family. Loving gestures, affection and kind words increase oxytocin levels in our blood which help us to feel calm and secure.
How to pray even if you’re not religious:
People all over the world and from all cultures and belief systems pray. Whether or not you believe in a higher power and regardless of your ideas of what happens after we die, you can bring spirituality into your family life, and increase peaceful, loving feelings through prayer.
What to pray about:
Pray for strength. Send wishes into the universe, or to your God, that family members can work through their problems large and small.
Pray for success. Success is a subjective concept, but we all have ideas about what we’d like to make happen in our lives. So if you and your family members have set personal goals that will keep you on track with living better and improving the world by way of your gifts, then talk about it and pray about it together.
Pray for health. A weak body means we are unable to enjoy what life has to offer. When we’re robust and full of life, we can engage more fully and do the things we want to do. Pray for the health of your partner and family so that you may enjoy life to the fullest.
Pray for understanding. Many of the conflicts that we experience in our daily lives are rooted in misunderstanding. In seeking to connect with each other through prayer, we can gain better insights into our relationships.
Pray for peace. Set intentions for being more kind, loving and patient, with your partner, within your family, and with the people you encounter every day.
What Does a Healthy Diet Have to Do With Peace at Home?
Today we are discussing how to bring more peace into your family and home life. One way to do that is, believe it or not, by improving your diet. “You are what you eat” holds truth in both the physical and mental health realms. How does this work?
When we consume lots of high-calorie, low-nutrition foods that are highly processed, we might find them delicious and additive, yes. We might get a pleasant feeling in our bellies and we might get a jolt of energy from the sugar we just ate.
However, in a short amount of time, the “high” that we get from eating sweet and carb-rich foods and salty snacks is sure to wear off. At which time, we are apt to feel grumpy, lethargic, and ready for a nap. A well-meaning family member who approaches at this time might find us to be short of temper as well as argumentative.
To complicate matters, “junk” foods such as chips and salty snacks, and fast foods which are deep-fried in cheap oil, tend to stick around in the intestines longer. So when we eat things that our bodies have a harder time processing, this affects our digestion and consequently, our mood.
To increase a feeling of happiness and well being and to contribute to a peaceful feeling among family members, we should eat foods that deliver good nutrition to our bodies while promoting healthy digestion. These foods include…
Fruits and vegetables. The FDA’s recommended serving amount changes every so often, but the consistent advice is that the more fruits and vegetables we include in our diet, the healthier we will be and better we will look and feel.
Whole grains. Processed grains have little nutritional value other than the vitamins that are added in processing. Whole grains are useful in that they work to help regulate our digestion. Fiber-rich foods keep things moving through our systems which leads to better digestion and increased positive mood.
Healthy proteins. Lean meats, grass-fed meats, legumes, nuts, and dairy products in modest portions should be featured at every meal along with healthy vegetables, some fruit, and whole grains. Protein is food for our muscles, including the biggest one – the brain.
Another way that our daily intake affects our mood and how we respond to others is whether or not we manage to eat meals on time. When blood sugar levels dip too low, we can develop that “hangry” feeling that may cause us to lose patience with those closes to us. The remedy for this is to prepare meals in advance to serve in a timely fashion. It also helps to carry along a healthy snack, such as nuts and fruits, wherever you go.
Making positive dietary changes can have more of an impact on our overall mood and attitude toward others than we might realize. If you’d like to have a home that includes peaceful, easy feelings, then be sure to include plenty of fresh, healthy foods.
Making Peace at Home Starts With You
Do you wish and hope for more peace and ease in your daily dealing with family? Sometimes it feels like our home life is a far cry from that vision we have in our heads of children playing quietly by the fire, family members speaking softly and using manners, and all of the peaceful things we long for in our home lives.
One way that we can bring about more peace in our families is by offering peace to others. Start with simple changes.
Set the example. If your family members tend toward impatience and snippy retorts, refuse to indulge this behavior BUT do not reflect a surly attitude back at others. Instead, be firm, patient, and polite. This may take some getting used to, but if you practice what so many preach about peace, you may just find that your calm and soothing ways are catching.
Replace irritation with patience. Changing your entire attitude may seem impossible at first. Tension often builds as we clash with family members over various issues. Even small things seem to pile up in our heads, much like that never-ending mountain of laundry. But if we become aware of how often we feel annoyed by the very dynamics of our own family life, we can begin to change our responses.
Keep tension at bay. One way to be more patient is by finding release for your stress. If we take time out for exercise every day, including some light cardio and stretching, it will make a big difference in how we react to little things that come up.
Be peaceful in words and deeds. If your thoughts are negative, keep them to yourself. If your deeds can cause unhappiness to others, change your intentions. Find ways to be peaceful in your daily dealings. In doing so, peace will come to you as you give it to others.