Dozen Daily Disciplines 5-Invest Time with Family

Poll number: 

Question-Week ending Sunday 11/17/02:

How would you grade your effort to make it a daily discipline to share time and communicate with your children or parents living at home?: Use the following scale to vote: A-Make it a top priority; B-Try hard to share daily; C-Really don't try hard enough; D-Just don't have the time; E-Avoid family - they stress me out Please read the Pre-Poll Commentary before taking this poll.

Pre-Poll Commentary:

In this fifth poll of the Daily Dozen Disciplines, we will discuss the importance of focusing time with your children or parents living at home. This question can be answered by either parents or children living at home together. If your kids are grown up, answer the question based on how it was when they lived at home.

Since we usually get only one chance at living a functional and happy family life, we should make the best of it. Life passes us by so quickly, that we don't usually take notice of many important things until we hit our forties, fifties or even sixties. We are just SO BUSY each day trying to juggle our time and responsibilities, that we miss focusing on some of the most memorable experiences in life.

From a parent's perspective, a happy home life usually results from paying attention to the important details of your children's lives with the same intensity you apply to your career. You need to communicate with them and realize that their challenges and needs seem overwhelming to them. Even though they don't want advice, you need to supply some and constantly let them know that you love them and care. You need to make it a daily discipline to pay attention and communicate without making your kids feel like you're meddling into their lives.

From a child's perspective, to have loving, caring parents is one of the greatest gifts in the world to receive. To have parents who unconditionally care about you and sincerely try to guide you into becoming an independent and responsible human being is a priceless asset. As a child, it would be great to treat your parents as if you really appreciated their sacrifices and efforts to help. Put time aside each day to communicate to your parents that you care about their well-being and love them. Surprise them by doing things that are important to them without having to be asked.

Everyone wants to be appreciated in life and the home is the best place for everyone to start. Don't take anyone or anything for granted and happy times will be more bountiful. Be honest with each other at all times and go out of your way to make your family members happy.

Let us know how you grade yourself in this fifth discipline, by taking our poll this week. As always, BE PASSIONATE about making the necessary changes to live a happier life.

This poll will end on Sunday 11/17/02. Watch for the results and summary by Monday morning 11/18/02.


  1. 45% reported not really trying hard enough to share daily
  2. 29% reported trying hard to share daily
  3. 16% reported making it a top priority to share daily
  4. 08% reported just not having the time to share
  5. 02% reported avoiding their family, to avoid stress

Post-Poll Commentary:

I believe that most of us would like to have a loving and sharing relationship with our family members. But so many factors become obstacles toward achieving this goal. I believe a short list of obstacles in random order might be:

  1. Differences of opinions toward issues and beliefs
  2. Hurt feeling and emotions evolving from the differences
  3. Generation gaps causing misunderstandings
  4. Failure to communicate honestly
  5. Taking others for granted
  6. Not placing the proper value on the relationship
  7. Lack of mutual respect

From our polls answers we find that the majority of our respondents do not try hard enough to make happy family relationships a top priority in their lives. One method we might use to improve family relationships might be to:

  1. Recognize where we are right now in our relationships
  2. Set a goal where we would like to be
  3. Recognize the obstacles we face
  4. Decide on solutions to overcome each obstacle

I know it's not easy to achieve a GREAT relationship with your family members. But I believe that it's definitely worth the effort to try. Wishing you the best!