The Secrets of Happy Families Review
There is no denying the fact that when we are happy in our home life we function better, feel less stressed and communicate better with others around us. Happiness in our home life is incredibly important for our personal well being. I definitely can feel the difference in myself when chaos and stress disrupts our emotional well being at home. I can see these effects in my children in their temperament and behaviour towards eachother.
I love attending workshops and reading books to help me with my parenting skills. Sometimes the information is helpful and other times I feel like it would not apply to our family or is something I could never see myself implementing in our home. I was excited to review The Secrets of Happy Families by Bruce Feiler for many reasons. Who doesn’t want to work on skills to increase their family’s happiness? I am always up for anything that will help my family in the long run!
This book was developed after Bruce Feiler was determined to find the best solutions about raising happy families. He gathered the latest research, team building exercises and problem solving techniques from some of the greatest experts out there. He then tested these techniques out on his family. He developed techniques to help build stronger family relationships, managing chaos, teaching our children values and having fun as a family.
The Secrets of Happy Families starts off with the quote: “All happy families are alike”. At first I did not understand the quote but reading through the book it began to make sense. Happy families all have similar things in common: adaptation, communication and being together. I think we all know communication is important as well as being able to change to different situations but it is usually the how do we do this that is the difficult part. I am in no way perfect – I lose my patience, I can yell, sometimes when I argue with my husband I do not listen to his side of the argument. I know this and I am always open to learning new techniques to help not only myself but our family.
Bruce provides an open dialect with his readers providing easy to follow techniques with valid reasons behind them. He actually offers over 200 strategies to help deal with pretty much any situation your family could be facing! Pretty awesome, right?
My personal favourite technique is one that has been implemented at my work over a year ago. At work we have daily “huddles” first thing in the morning and this is the perfect opportunity for all team members to catch up, share information, talk about what went right and what is going wrong. We have started weekly huddles which are going really well. It is the perfect way for each one of us to have an open forum to talk about what we like, what is not working well for our family and to let each other know what is going to happen in the upcoming week (appointments, practices, staying late at work, etc..). Common sense right? But how many of us actually take the time to work on communicating not only with our partner but our children. By communicating I mean taking the time to sit and listen, understand what they are saying and feeling – not just telling them (something that I have been guilty of many times!).
This is one of the best parenting books I have ever read. Bruce provided concrete examples and techniques that would fit our lifestyle and have actually helped us as a family work together. Life is hard enough as it is why not work to make the home a happy place? I know that his techniques have already started to improve our family dynamics!
Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.