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How To Improve Family Life And Functioning Through Love

Hi, I'm Nicholeen and I am the owner of Teaching Self-Government. Teaching self-government is a type of program where you teach children and yourselves how to govern yourselves. So, what is self-government? Self-government is being able to determine the cause and effect of any given situation and possessing a knowledge of your own behaviors so that you can control them.

Believe it or not, self-government is vital for good family functioning and family life. That's what we're going to be talking about in this article. How to improve family life and functioning through love? Studies show that for most people, their top priority is their family. 

So, why then do people use their worst problem-solving skills, their worst most selfish communications with their families? It doesn't make sense, does it? Why would we spend all of our love and heart energy on our family yet selfishly communicate? That's because society is not doing a great job of promoting functional family skills and behaviors. 

In fact, if anything, we are pulling people more and more towards selfishness. And selfishness how you feel, what you want, what you like, who's in your space using your stuff, all of those things are damaging for family relationships and create dysfunction within your own heart. And if you have dysfunction in your own heart, you are not going to have functional relationships. 

So, let's talk about relationships. A relationship is one way. I know many people think, "No, to have a relationship you have to have 2 people. It takes 2 to tango, right?" Yes, it may take 2 people to do the tango but each person on the side of that tango dance is actually in charge of their own moves, their own timing their own beat, and their own connection to the other person. So, really each one of them has a relationship with that other person and a relationship with themselves. 

If you are always thinking about how you feel, what you don't get what you wish you did have how someone's not respecting you, then you are having a selfish relationship with yourself. And as soon as you start thinking of yourself in that way, you will stop valuing the people around you as much. In fact, you might even think of them as enemies. 

This creates dysfunction in your relationships. And that means your families will experience more dysfunction whenever there's a problem to solve or an activity that you were hoping would go just right. Love should be the basis of all of our relationships in our family. And I think for most people it is the base. 

They would never say they don't love their family. In fact, they love their family so much. You love your family so much or you wouldn't even be taking the time to read this article about how love is going to help the functioning of your family relationships. So, I want to share with you 7 things that you can do to improve that functioning for your family through love. 

Number 1: Value

Make sure that in your own mind, they have value. They're not your enemy, they're not a villain. They are a valuable person. A person who you know probably feels love for you in their heart too. To foster that feeling of value, you need to see their potential. Even in the moments when they are having the hardest time. 

Who can they become? What is their true goodness that's inside? Can you see it? Do you trust that it's there? See that potential. And talk to them even when they're misbehaving through the lens of knowing that that's who they really are. 

When you can see who they really are despite their flaws, then you can have gratitude for them. The gratitude in your heart is a seed for increased love. If you allow yourself to be bothered by your children, then you will not feel grateful for them and that will decrease the love that you feel for them. In fact, when you're feeling like "They wear me out. 

They're too much work. They don't even care." That usually is a sign that you're not feeling grateful for them. This means your love at that moment might be waning just a little bit. Even though if somebody asked you if you loved them, you would definitely declare yes. 

When people ask me their parenting questions on my teaching self-government support group and in some of the mentor calls that I have with people or when I go and train people in their homes, they'll tell me "These are the problems that we're having. 

This child has these problems, these problems." But I love when they say to me, "But don't get me wrong. This is a beautiful child. He has such a servant's heart. He's such a strong worker. He can be such a joy to be around." And they tell me all of these wonderful things that show me that they see his potential. 

It makes me so excited to know that they're coming at solving this problem and increasing the bond and love in their family and increasing the function through a lens of possibility. Through a lens of potential. So, value them. See their potential. See what they can accomplish and be grateful for it. 

Number 2: Show The Gratitude

So, you felt the gratitude. How do you show it? One of the most natural and logical ways to show gratitude is through praise. And there are better ways to praise than others. So, I teach parenting and I always tell people of all the styles of parenting like correcting and handling the intensive situations and pre-teaching, counseling with the children, the most effective style of parenting that you can use is praise. 

But that praise shouldn't just be like, "Thank you. Good job." It should be more than that. There should be a description of what that person did that was really great. So, when I praise somebody, I look at them with love in my eyes and I say, "You know, just now, I told you no that you couldn't go on the bike ride with your friends. 

You looked right at me you kept a calm face voice and body. You said okay and then you just dropped the subject. I can tell you're totally fine with that. That means a lot to me. That you would respect me that much. And I've got to tell you that's going to bring you a lot of happiness in your relationships in the future. because you don't always get a pick when somebody is going to agree with you on an idea." That's describing. 

That's good praising. It's valuable. It's meaty. They can hold on to it. So, show gratitude by praising them. A loving family, a functioning family is a family that plans for success. They know they're going to have problems. Everybody has problems. But they plan for how they're going to solve those problems. They say, "Okay, these are the skills that we need. This is how we're going to handle this type of problem. 

Number 3: Consequences 

These are the negative consequences that will be for this. These are the positive consequences. This is how we're going to meet as a family to discuss issues that need to be discussed. This is who we are as a family." When a person is self-governed, they're planned. That's what it means. 

They say, "Where am I going? Who do I want to become? How am I going to get there?" And then they take step by step. And after each step, they analyze, "How did I do? Am I still going in the right direction?" That's what the family has to do together as a group. 

When the family does that, it eliminates manipulation. And if you can get rid of that manipulation and that emotional trauma, that people download eat on each other all the time, then your home feels happy, safe, bonded, full of love. 

Number 4: Look At Them

Do you know how often we go through daily life and we don't look at people? Really look at them? In fact, I think there are a lot of people that think it's rude to look at people. I've been on the subway. I've been on a bus and in an airport and seen everybody just looking down. 

Everybody just thinking their own thing trying not to make eye contact. And I've seen families just minding their own business. Looking down. Looking at their cookbook, doing their project, and not really looking at each other. When they're talking to each other when they're giving instruction to each other. Your eyes are the windows to your soul. 

That's how a person touches your heart. The easiest. So, if you want to have good love in your relationships and your family, you want to have greater functioning, you got to look at each other with love in the eyes. Not be afraid to show the honest truth about who you are and how much you love them. 

People that won't look at you are usually people that are hiding who they are. They don't want you to see. It makes me sad that our society is so full of a culture of not allowing anybody in anymore. It can start in the family. We can fix that huge chasm that is happening culturally by teaching our family members how to bond and look at each other so that they can lead out in society and look at the people around them too. 

Number 5: Send The Love

So, when you're looking at them in the eyes even if they're going completely out of control, even if they're yelling at you, just look at them and think, "I love you. I love you. It's okay." If you look at them with true love even when they're having the hardest time, that will help them come back to a place of thinking, a place of functioning. 

Because that honesty will be sent from your heart to theirs. I literally visualize taking my love out of my chest sending it through my eyes and landing in their heart. That may seem weird but it works. It works for me. When they are completely going out of control, I can maintain love for them. Now, my family doesn't go out of control. 

Well, practically ever because we're really self-governing. But my foster children did. As soon as we got someone to a place where they would stop going out of control, they would remove them from our home and bring us somebody else who would go out of control. And so, I had to be able to maintain that feeling, that spirit of love in my home no matter who was here. 

I think that was the magic that people saw on the BBC program that was made in 2009 about our family. So, the BBC made a program called the world's Strictest Parents. They brought two troubled teens to our home. They were both aged 17. And they stayed for 8 days and their hearts were drastically changed. 

In fact, the calmness in our homemade is the most-watched episode on the BBC for that whole program which was called the World's Strictest Parents in case you're wondering. Anyway, send love. When you send the love, they'll feel it. Even if it seems like they're not at first. They will. That's the truth they need to know that everything's going to be okay. 

Number 6: Self-Government

I've already told you what self-government is. It's this process of controlling yourself, planning, analyzing where you're going. But self-government if every person chooses to take responsibility for their own behavior, for their own heart. And having their own change of heart, that changes the whole feeling in the home. 

Number 7: Calmness

Do you really know how to be calm? I'm not talking about silence. I'm not talking about stoic. I'm talking about being really calm. Do you know how to get yourself to a place where you can truly be calm so that you can send that love? Because if you're stressed, if you're anxious, if you've worked up or angry, the love flies out the window. It gets overshadowed by the emotions that you have. 

Calmness is vital. In fact, you can't have self-government without mastering your own calmness. Years ago, I started teaching people about self-government when they asked me to. And I would teach them all the skills and how to communicate and how to solve problems.

I assumed everyone knew how to get themselves calm. Well, the laugh was on me. People kept asking, "Yeah, but how do you be calm?" So, I finally made a class called The Power of Calm so that they could learn the 6-step process that I go through for how to be calm.

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