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Preserving Peace in the Home

You know that as you age, two things could happen. You either become more tolerant of others or less tolerant. You either accept the differences and foibles of those close to you or you become more impatient and judgmental. Obviously, if you want to preserve peace in the home, you must be more mindful of the things you are doing, thinking or saying because harmony feels better than turmoil and duress.

Here are some suggestions you can follow for a more peaceful home.

1. Change your viewpoint from judgmental thinking to respect and tolerance. Everyone is entitled to be an individual and live their lives as they want, even if it doesn't go with your philosophy or behavioral patterns.

2. Inhibit sarcasm and behaviors designed to threaten, lash out or intentionally hurt others. Support behaviors that show understanding, empathy, caring, and the ability to compromise. Also, set clear behavioral boundaries so others know what they can and cannot do regarding your emotional and physical space.

3. Remember to check yourself. When you talk, are you saying things that "build" rather than break down communication? Are your comments put downs, insults or demeaning?You can build good communication by asking open ended questions and by repeating what you hear for clarity.

4. Notice if you frequently make demands of others, such as demanding your family members appreciate you, be loving towards you or be accepting of you. Rather, change your demand to desire. In other words, what you desire from family members is that they appreciate you, love you and accept you. It's inevitably frustrating and disappointing if you have the unrealistic expectation that life is supposed to give you everything you ask for - but you can certainly make your wishes known.


5. Remind yourself that you always have choices and that it's good practice to stop and think before you behave. Ask yourself this question: Can I let this incident go? Is it really that important? Will I remember what happened three weeks from now?

6. Discuss and model positive approaches to various challenges that you and your family may encounter. Be an example of harmony and support since your family depends on you.

The more YOU behave differently, the more your family will be rewarded with positive outcomes. There is no better feeling that doing a great job at home and seeing everyone feel good about themselves and each other.

Amy Sherman, MA, has a degree in counseling/psychology and coaches others to be the best that they can be. She is the founder of the Baby Boomers' Network ( http://www.yourbabyboomersnetwork.com ) and can be reached at amybetsherman@gmail.com


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