It’s easy to get caught up in a wave of activities and consumerism during the holidays. We can become so outwardly-focused on parties and shopping that, before we even know it’s happening, our own family gets pushed farther and farther down our "To Do" List.
It doesn’t have to happen that way. With a few purposeful choices, you can shift your attention back to quality time with your own family.
Here are some ideas to help bring your family closer together and shift attention to the relationships that are most important to you. Make this holiday season your family’s best one ever.
Volunteer as a family at least one day during the holidays. There are social service agencies in your hometown that need your help. Maybe your family can establish an ongoing relationship with one of the agencies, and continue your service after the holidays are over.
Reach out to an organization that can help you “adopt” a family that cannot afford gifts or a festive meal. Get everyone in your home involved in making the holiday happen for someone else.
Get the kids in on the giving.
Take your kids shopping for gifts to donate to Toys for Tots or another program that gets them to children in need.
Plan non-food centered activities.
How about some time outside? Take everyone skiing, ice skating, or for a hike in the snowy woods.
Ask everyone to turn down social plans on the same date. Make a fire and rent a movie or get a new game that you can all enjoy together.
Set a clear expectation that phones are not allowed at the family dinner table, not only during the holidays, but throughout the year. Keep your phones and other devices off for one full hour a day to enjoy face-to-face time with your family.
Give the gift of a shared memory.
We all give our loved ones so much stuff at the holidays. How about giving the gift of an experience this year? Get everyone concert or theater tickets, or a weekend away together. Take pictures, frame them, and hang them in your home.
I wish all the best to you and yours this Holiday season. Enjoy!