Monday, September 2, 2019

3 Keys to Forging Powerful Family Memories

Pixabay - CC0 License

One sentiment that virtually all parents express at some point in their lives, is that their kids “just grow up so fast,” and “time flies.”

Our families are virtually always the closest people to us in our lives, and the memories and experiences we share with them are a major part of what gives life its deepest degree of value and meaning.

But what if you find that something in the way you’re going about things just isn’t right, and you’re not forging as many powerful and enduring memories with your family as you’d like?

There can certainly be external reasons for why this could be the case – such as financial factors that drive you to seek out Online Installment Loans, in order to be able to make that summer family vacation work.

Often enough, though, the reason for this particular kind of issue has more to do with everyday habits than anything else.

Here are a few keys to forging powerful family memories.

Go out and make things happen – in spite of laziness or inconvenience

In the book, “The Power of Moments,” Chip and Dan Heath, various research is explored with regards to just how powerful and meaningful memories are formed, and how we look back on them.

One fascinating finding is that when we have powerful “Peak Experiences,” we will typically remember the highlights, and forget all about the mid-level irritation and frustration that went along with them.

The authors use the hypothetical example of a family at Disneyland – where, at any given moment, the family may be irritated by things like the heat, or the long queues. But, looking back, it would be the good stuff they would really remember.

The meaning of this is pretty clear – force yourself (and your family) to go out and make things happen, in spite of laziness or inconvenience. A few years down the line, you’ll cherish those peak moments, and likely won’t even remember that you wanted to stay on the sofa that day.

Break the routine, and do new and unusual stuff
It’s common that, as we get older, we experience a sensation of time speeding up and getting away from us. It’s kind of like our days are shorter, and less memorable.

According to Chip and Dan Heath, the key reason for this is that we fall into routines, as we get older, and end up doing the same sorts of things every day. This means we create less standout memories.

Novelty seems to be a big factor in forming potent memories. So, make a habit of breaking the routine and doing new and unusual stuff on your family outings. That doesn’t have to mean climbing Everest – it could just mean going to a petting zoo, if you don’t do that very often.

Try to include an element of shared growth, or obstacle-overcoming
Strong memories – and especially positive ones – are often connected to a sense of overcoming various obstacles, “growing,” and “becoming better” somehow.

Family experiences that involve learning new skills together, or solving puzzles or problems together, may be uniquely effective when it comes to forming stand-out memories, therefore.

Maybe spend a day at a child-friendly Escape Room? Or how about doing a family fun run?