After a fast-paced week in Toronto taking a Couple’s Therapy training course, there's something I wanted to speak about from my heart. This is something that's as effective as therapy, in some cases.
I learned that only 33% of families regularly eat dinner together and the ones that do are impacted by distractions such as cell phones, tablets or television, which kill conversation and connection.
This is staggering! We recently offered a Surviving Motherhood workshop at my practice where we discussed in detail the guilt faced by mothers, often stemming from worry that they are failing their kids or are some how messing them up.
Eating together as a family is a simple solution to help ease your mind that you are helping your children thrive long term.
This simple practice can change the mental and physical health outcomes for your children. Children crave connection with their parents.
Eating dinner together is a huge predictor of their success mentally and physically and it sets them up for healthy eating habits for life. It also boosts vocabulary and academic performance as well as improves mood.
Eating dinner together is known as a ritual of connection. We have a wide range of ways to connect with others, from saying hello in the morning to having meals together. People don’t seem to necessarily avoid connection but do so by accident.
Consider your family culture and what you want your children to remember from their upbringing.
Consider what you did as a child that was meaningful for you and build it into your family now. Try creating routines around mealtimes and bedtime, practices your children can expect regardless how busy the day is.