You Can Make Your Family Life Less Hectic - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

You Can Make Your Family Life Less Hectic

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With our hectic schedules, having an organized family life is a real challenge these days.

A father and writer decided his family needed to get their act together, so he studied the problem.

Bruce Feiler wrote the book, The Secrets of Happy Families, as a result of what he discovered.

It's his view, that a good family life is the result of constant adaptation to find options that work.

For example his daughters use a checklist, with a list of chores, everyday.

They have the responsibility of checking everything off, as each task is completed.

But he says the best thing they do, is to hold a weekly family meeting, to talk about what did or didn't work that week.

It allows

his family to adjust to life, in real time

As part

t of the process the kids to choose their own rewardand penaltiese

Research shows

ws if kids make their own schedules and evaluate their own work,it helps them interact with the family.

Feiler says he doesn't put a lot of emphasis on family meals because they're overrated.

He points out, that research shows, there's only 10 minutes of quality conversation in any meal.

So that 10 minutes can be done at any time.

That could be a weekend breakfast or a bedtime snack break.

He says it's simply a matter of connection on a meaningful level when it works out best.

Feiler says when there's resistance sometimes he has to pull the parent card and make the kids do it his way.

Bu the tries to only do that as a last resort.

Then he'll revisit the issue later on when it can be talked over and explained.

The key is making everyone a part of the conversation, so the whole family can buy in to the process.

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