They listen to you vent, are there for you, give you lifts, cook for you, pray for you, check how you're doing. And yet it's surprising how many of us take our families for granted. Here are 5 ways in which you can make conscious gestures to show your family that you care for and appreciate them.
Cook them dinner
Getting dinner on the table seems to be a task that, regularly, falls into the hands of mum or dad. Though if you're a parent yourself, it's perhaps already your habit to take responsibility for feeding the clan. Consumer or producer, don't opt to make your family pasta or beans on toast because it's easy, mix it up a little and cook, with love, a dish that you'd happily serve to Jamie Oliver.
Give them your time
When the going gets tough in your work/study schedule, it can be oh-so-easy to place family time at the bottom of your list of priorities. But what this means is that, in refraining from nurturing our relationships with them, we might be somewhat neglecting them. If the family bond isn't strong, how are your siblings/children supposed to replicate this bond in their outside friendships and relationships? Whether it's helping your little sister with her homework or listening to your son recite his time tables, being there for your family will create a network of security that will support them in all areas of their life.
Do your share of the housework
If you're a proudly proclaimed house-wife/husband, then by no means does this apply to you, but for those of us who spend the majority of our day at work, it can be all too tempting to go home and put our feet up when the office day is over. This can mean that whoever is at home is being forced to pick up after us, or our home environment often transforms into a tip, until a mass clean up is of the essence.
Support their dreams
We'd be surprised to realise how much of an influence you have on the people around you. Words are powerful, positive or negative. They manifest situations, and so you don't want what comes out of your mouth to be the reason why your brother no longer wants to be a basketball player, or the reason why your daughter gave up on ballet. As the saying goes, if you can't say anything nice then don't say anything at all. Positive vibes only.