It isn’t difficult to talk about instilling family values in your home, but the way to do it could be a bit confusing.
Nonetheless it needn’t be complicated. With one or two basic yet particular approaches and concepts, teaching family ethics can be integrated into your daily life.
What Are “Family Values”?
Talking generally, the term “family values” often pertains to positive personality characteristics like truth, compassion, respect, responsibility, patience, empathy, and generosity. How these play out and what form they take differs from family to family.
As an example, one family might translate “responsibility” as caring for the environment and assuming accountability for a clean neighborhood and healthy planet. In another family, responsibility might be more of a finance nature, making reference to responsible money habits. And naturally, it might mean both in the same family.
So how does one teach these things? First, consider what these values mean to you and your family.
Does “honesty” mean never telling a lie? Or does it mean being upfront with your affections and thoughts? What about patience – does that refer to delayed satisfaction, or being long suffering of others ‘ peculiarities? After you get an idea of how these values look in your circle of relatives, you can begin sharing and teaching them to your own family.
Here is some guidance on the best way to do that.
Lead by Example
You may well think your children and family aren’t watching, but they are. If you find it tough to implant patience and tolerance in your youngsters, perhaps they’re seeing the opposite modeled in you. Have you gotten irritated and allowed outbursts at other drivers when you’re on the road? Do you get provoked when your children take too much time to get ready to go somewhere?
Perhaps you aren’t generous with your money or time. Check out your own behavior, and when you alter it, point it out. “Oh, that person cut me off in this traffic! Usually I’d get loony about that, but I’m making the choice to keep calm. Perhaps that person has a family emergency going on.”
This brings us to another family value that is come to the leading edge recently : empathy.
As in the example above, talk about possible and pragmatic reasons and situations for peoples’s behavior. This is going to help your youngsters form those “pathways” in their minds so that when a person is maddening or annoying, their minds may turn instantly to empathetic thoughts ,eg “Maybe she’s having a very bad day,” or “That person could be acting so mean because she lost a friend or family member recently.”
Try and tie it in with your family’s experiences – “Remember when you (your child ) were so upset and had no wish to chat or be polite when your pet died? Perhaps that person failed to be nice to you because his pet just died.” Plenty of family ethics come down to relations with other folks – treating folk kindly, being fair and responsible with other’s time, and that kind of thing.
The first relationship experiences we have are in our families; leading by example and taking care to verbalise and explain why and how we act as we do can go a great distance in making family values a vital part of daily life in your home – and a major part of your children’s lives when they are grown.
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