Family is the cornerstone of humanity and should be cherished and protected. Family relationships can be oh so simple yet also complex and convoluted. Family relationships are simple in the fact that you have no control over the physical family you are born into (blood relatives), but they are also complex and convoluted because family relationships are delicate and impact several individuals on different levels presenting both joy and challenges along the way. Webster defines family as
a group of people who are related to each other, a person’s children, or a group of related people including persons who lived in the past.
However, these definitions appear to be more of a traditional view and do not represent the depth of the meaning of family in today’s society. Webster’s definitions are a good starting point but there are a variety of family structures that differ greatly from the traditionalist standpoint.
Single parent families, blended families, childless families and friendship families.
Now-a-days, we have single parent families, blended families, childless families, and growing at a rapid pace is the term friendship families where a group of friends consider themselves to be a family unit and can be just as close, if not closer, than a traditional blood-related family. Nonetheless, each family structure has its own nuances and should be evaluated often. Each person or persons should seek to define family based on their own standards and convictions and learn how to navigate change while understanding one’s self and emotional well-being in order to strengthen familial ties and increase the level of joy and happiness in your life.
Being contagious with family is the willingness to look past traditions and open up to extending familial relationships that will allow you to communicate your wants and needs in a respectful way; for the truth of the matter is that family relationships are important and are a necessity to society as a whole. This is the way God created it.
How God sees it.
Throughout the bible we see the importance of family to God and how He used different types of family structures to accomplish many miracles – the most noteworthy being the blended family that included Jesus Christ. God is concerned more about how we treat each other and ways to improve our family relationships.
The essence of being contagious with family is to inspire specific ways in which to improve family relationships through meeting the needs of others, while encouraging stronger family ties through positive inward self-evaluation and change.
So how does one begin to inspire contagious family relationships?
There are so many tools presented in psychological research to help facilitate change. Psychologist Dr. William Moulton Marston created the DISC behavior assessment tool which focuses on identifying an individual’s dominant personality trait. (For more information on the DISC assessment please visit: http://discpersonalitytesting.com/blog/what-are-the-four-disc-types). Knowing one’s primary personality type while recognizing your strengths and weakness can help to build and fortify family relationships. All relationships, not just family, will improve and become more contagious when you discover your own personality type, adjust behavioral styles to promote harmony and peace, enhance communication skills all while reducing conflict.
I would like to challenge you to take a hard look at your family relationships:
- Are you willing to forgive and move forward in peace?
- Are you patient and quick to give praise and affection to those around you?
- Do you fulfill commitments?
- Do you spend time nourishing your family relationships instead of complaining and grumbling about the things that can’t be changed?
- Do you know your dominant personality trait, strengths and weaknesses?
If not, take the time to build your family relationships, encourage your family to take the DISC assessment with you, step out in Faith and expectation that your family will experience a greater level of love, peace, joy and happiness. Family is what you make it and I want to encourage you to make your family GREAT! I want to encourage you to be the contagious change you want to see in your family.
Being Contagious With Change,
Dr. Taaka Cash, DNP, MPH, MSN, RN, FPMHNP-BC is certified through the American Nursing Credentialing Center as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatry with prescriptive authority. Visit www.PrivyOasis.com to learn about her practice.