8 Lessons We Learned as a Family | The Realistic Optimist

8 Lessons We Learned as a Family

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Family, like branches in a tree, we all grow in different directions, yet our roots remain as one.

Our family is far from perfect, and we went through numerous trials and endured a lot of problems in the past. There were financial hardships, health challenges especially for my mom, and differences in character and personalities that usually led to conflicts and misunderstandings. In fact, our home used to be the last place I wanted to be in when I was growing up.

But as they say, the good will always outweigh the bad. Through the years, my family was able to overcome challenges and we resolve not to let trials get the best of us. In this blog post, I will share with you the lessons that we learned as a family. Here are some of them:

1. My siblings and I used to fight a lot because of our conflicting beliefs and behavior. Fortunately, we realized that instead of bickering and pulling each other down, we should befriend each other and accept our differences and unique traits. If before we spend weekends going out with friends, now we allot this time to spend time together. Some weekends we watch movies with my mom and child, while there are weekends when we cook our favorite dishes and enjoy the meal as a whole family. Sometimes, we go out and just enjoy the fruits of our labor. Through these ways, we have grown to be closer and more comfortable with each other’s company.

2. We learned how to count our blessings instead of looking at the things we lack. I encouraged my mom and my siblings to avoid complaining, especially when inside the home. I helped them realize that complaining can hold them down and add more to their burden. It was tough at first, but it’s worth the effort. Because of this, we’re able to keep the harmony within the household and our life as a family.

3. Family should come first before anything else. We used to give financial support to our relatives to the point of compromising our own household finances. We realized that it’s not healthy, not just for us, but for our relatives too. That’s why we learned how to say no, especially if we’re also on a tight budget and what we have is only enough for our needs. We resolved to only give when we have extra cash to spare and if it’s because of a valid reason.

4. We save more and we spend less. We learned to prioritize our needs over our wants. We learned how to be wiser in spending our resources, and we avoid buy stuff that we don’t necessarily need. We save more and we spend less.

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5. We don’t gossip with our neighbors because we don’t want any sort of conflict with anyone from our community. We often stay at home because joining in senseless banter with them will do us no good. Through this, we learned how to address concerns within the family and improve our relationship with each other.

6. We help each other at all times. When I struggle with providing for our household expenses, my two siblings are always available to help out. More so, my mom is mostly in charge of homemaking and keeping our home conducive at all times. But at the same time, my siblings and I, even if we have day jobs, still help her because we don’t want her to get too tired or strained. This is because our mom has hypertension and we value her health more than anything else.

7. We worked hard. No, we don’t earn millions and our income is not that high, but it was enough to fulfill our dreams and ambitions. We made it work. We took what we have and maximized it. We learned that nothing good would happen to our lives if we just laze around and do nothing. That’s why we learned how to love our jobs and embrace our professions. Every job has its own challenges and these are not easy, it’s just a matter of learning how to love what you do so that it would feel enjoyable rather than a boring chore that simply helps pay the bills.

8. Above all else, we never forget God. We’re not a religious family but we apply the Lord’s teachings in our everyday lives. For us as a family, one way of giving Him thanks is loving each other and valuing the blessings that He gives us.

These are just eight of the numerous values that we learned as a family. I admit that we are still a work in progress and we’re still far from perfect. We still go through problems and experience trials, but we now know how to nip conflicts in the bud to avoid them from further escalating.

It wasn't easy to attain the harmony we experience now. In fact, it took us about five years to learn all of these. Though it took time, it was worth it and it’s a process that brought us closer as a family. I hope to inspire readers to not give up on their families, no matter how bad things seem right now. Maintaining harmony in the home is not just up to the parents, children have a part in it too. So if you’re a child, regardless of age, don’t lose hope. Change in your family life is not impossible and you can work to attain it, and you can begin with applying these eight lessons. God bless! I hope the best for you and your family.

How about you? How did you resolve conflicts as a family? What are the habits that bring each member closer? Please share your thoughts on the comments section below.

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