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Strengthening Families: Family Connections

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Making family connections each and every day is a powerful way to keep our families strong. But, there are a number of different things that keep us from connecting. Technology being one of the greatest distractions. Technology opens up so many opportunities and provides our families with great conveniences, but, it can also take over our family's life. Making it really hard to make family connections with one another.

The key is to find ways to use technology to strengthen our families. While never loosing site of the fact that the most powerful family connections we can make are the ones we make when we turn the technology off.

Here are a few suggestions for making eye contact in a world filled with iContact, to make our family connections stronger.

1. Many families like to watch TV shows together. Don't let TV be your only form of family togetherness. Narrow it down to one or two of your favorite shows and record them. Then find a good time for your family to sit down and watch them together. As you watch, and family members (especially children) have questions or comments, don't "shush" them expecting quiet. Instead, use the wonders of technology to pause the show and stop to answer their questions and have discussions about what you are watching. That way, everyone in the family knows that they are more important than the show.

Your family can take TV shows and movies even farther. After you watch a show or movie together, set aside time to have a discussion about what you watched. Talk about everyones favorite part, what they learned, and even have some fun coming up with alternate endings.

2. Making family connections to our past helps build a sense of identity. We can use technology to search out our ancestors. Then, turn the technology off and explore all the fun things you have learned. Talk about similarities you might have to your great great grandmother. Discuss the family stories and get to know those who came before. As a family, visit cemeteries to gain more information, or put flowers on graves for Memorial Day. Plan a family trip to visit cities or countries where your ancestors originated. Consider limiting your use of technology on the trip so you can make family connections while connecting to your families past.

3. Sit down as a family and use the internet to research all the fun things your family can do together in your community or surrounding area. Then log off and talk about all the options. Pick a few of your favorites and put them on the calendar. Family time should be scheduled just like our dentist appointments and other responsibilities if we want them to happen. Pull that technology back out and have family members add the family time to their digital calendars, then, put that technology away when your family actually hangs out together.

We live in a digital world that can often take over our family's time and focus. Instead of letting that happen, focus on the ways it can strengthen our family connections. Turn technology off more than we turn it on.

How does your family make more time for eye contact instead of iContact?

"Technology Log" PrintableFamily Connections-Strengthening Families

Want a fun way to keep tabs on the technology in your house so it doesn't take over? Download the "Technology Log" Printable here.

To access all of the Super Hero Family eBooks, including the Connection eBook, click here.

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Heather Johnson, M.S., teaches students the principles behind successful families at Brigham Young University. You can find her online at FamilyVolley.com, and connect with her on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest.  
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