man in yellow sweater sitting beside woman in yellow sweater

Emotional Connection around the Table

31 May 2024

How do mealtimes in your home go down? What would you like to change about them?

What if you were to have one meal a day together as a family in order to intentionally connect? What difference do you think it could make? According to research, a whole lot of difference, actually.

The Family Dinner Project  is a non-profit organisation started by clinical psychologist, Anne Fishel, who has written books and conducted research on the impact of families eating meals together regularly. I recommend a browse around the website as it is packed with practical ideas from family meals, to dinner time games and conversation starters. Like this one…

What are the benefits of regular family meal times?

Clever kids

It has been found that children who regularly eat at the table with family have a larger vocabulary than children who don’t. A larger vocabulary helps children when it comes to learning to read, as they learn reading skills earlier and more easily. For older children, it has been found that academic performance improves with more frequent family meals.

Healthier bodies

Family meal times benefit kids and parents in that generally, more nutritious food is consumed when sitting down to eat together. Sitting down to intentional meals sets a standard that children are more likely to follow later in life when they’re living independently.

Improved resilience and mood

It has been found that adolescents are more resilient to negative peer influences and tend to experiment less with substances. And, there is a higher level of hope, increased report of positive mood and more resilience noted in teens who frequently ate with their family. Along with this there is an obvious benefit of simply being together. Creating memories, or reliving memories as a unit far outlives the moment and builds a sense of community and belonging we all need, not just our children.

I’ve worked with a number of kids who carry a very real and strong resentment against how much their parents work. Carving out a meal time a day to put aside your phone and your computer, and put your full attention onto your children is a start at prioritizing your time for your children, not to mention your own mental health!

Below is a little tool I developed to help parents think about fun, connecting questions to ask at the meal table, if needed.

Let me know how it goes! I would love your feedback about what works for your family! 

Coming up tomorrow!

24 June 2024 Just a reminder about the Journalling Taster online tomorrow night!

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Emotional Connection around the Table

31 May 2024 How do mealtimes in your home go down? What would you like to change about them? What if you were to have one meal a day together as a family in order to intentionally connect? What difference do you think it could make? According to research, a whole lot of difference, actually.…

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