Who are these small people, and what are they doing underfoot all the time? While we would never say those things out loud, we may have similar thoughts as we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic together. The coronavirus has indeed forced us home and inside. But, is that all bad? Haven’t you at least given lip service to being home more? Gildshire will answer those for you. No, and yes. Here are some of the hidden advantages of spending time with the family. You may find yourself an altogether more palatable person.
What are the advantages of having a family?
Surprisingly enough, it not only the kids who benefit from having Dad and Mom home more often. Parents too benefit from quality with the younger ones in the family, even during work or school hours. Children feel valued when the parents take time to play a little hooky from hours spent analyzing spreadsheets and calculating the Vendor Owned Inventory.
These special times, never even considered before the pandemic, can make lasting memories. If you have a hard time believing us, see what a study by South University in Atlanta has to say? They made these discoveries. Time together with your kids:
- Creates a strong emotional bond between children and parents.
- Allows for better communication between all family members.
- Superior performance in school. Children who spend the most time communicating with parents tend to get markedly better grades in school.
- They are also less likely to exhibit behavioral problems.
We get it! Working parents who have kids involved in extracurricular activities under normal circumstances (which these are not!) make for full schedules without extra room for family time. Sound familiar? Not a problem. Simple things, such as dinner together every night, create a meaningful time together that your children need. We can do that now, as we have never been able to do it before.
Why is family time so important for parents?
Studies from Dartmouth University recently found that families who take part together in group activities share a strong emotional bond that lasts a lifetime. Interestingly, time spent together brings about an enhanced ability to adapt well to unfamiliar situations. So, share your favorite hobbies, sports, books, movies, or other favorite activities with these people who look vaguely like you. You may be surprised at how much they can learn from you and vice versa.
Does spending time with family reduce stress?
This may come as a surprise to anyone who has road-tripped with two children, but the answer is yes. The Billings (MT)-Gazette cited a series of tests given to families across the country who were split into two groups. Married and working parents with adolescent children, and married, working parents raising kindergartners. The families participated in a time-diary study. It was designed to explore how parents and their kids spend time in a typical week and how they feel when interacting with friends, co-workers, and each other.
Some of their findings include:
Working mothers schedule their work hours and even their job location around the perceived family needs. Fathers tend to their work hours around job requirements.
By a wide margin, most mothers prefer part-time work, while dad prefers full-time employment.
However, in the case of both mom and dad, when family and work are in conflict, the family tends to suffer consequences.
Parents with higher than normal stress levels tend to work more in the evenings and on weekends.
Interestingly enough, time with family members is the best stress reducer.
That includes any time with your children, whether it’s extended silence with your teen or the (let’s admit it) ruckus of dining with your 5-year-old. Family time is a healthy time that lessens feelings of guilt. Parents feel less guilty about spending so much away from the kids when they are in the present when they are at home.
So, if you are currently working 60 hours a week, and are feeling guilty that you aren’t giving more time to the job, stop and spend some time with Freddie and Flossie. They can help you work smarter by their very presence. And, hey, you might learn a little something from them, as well. Like TikTok. Just one of the hidden advantages of spending time with the family.