How to create your ideal emotional climate at home
Do you envy those families who seem to be harmonious all the time and wonder how you can also create your ideal emotional climate at home? Well, this begins with agreeing what are the feelings that are important to everyone in the family! This can be a relaxed and enriching experience involving your children by creating your family emotional charter together! After all, when you have their buy-in, it is more likely they will follow the rules!
Family Emotional Charter
I first learnt about the emotional charter from Dr. Marc Brackett and simply love the idea! So, why do you need a family emotional charter?
- Do you want to teach your child on the importance of feelings and respect towards one another’s feelings?
- Do you wonder if you are meeting your child’s emotional needs?
- Or, do you wish your child could understand how you feel?
- Is there a high level of tension or arguments that break out at home?
- Do you wish to create your ideal emotional climate at home?
Purpose of the Family Emotional Charter
In a Family Emotional Charter, the family come together to brainstorm and construct their own family charter. The purpose of the charter is to create the ideal emotional climate that the family wishes to experience together. Once constructed, the charter would help the family to:
- Identify the key feelings that are important to them to experience as a family
- Guide the behaviours as the family becomes mindful of choosing the behaviours or words that will help them to uphold the family charter
- Empowers one to call out an unacceptable behaviour by pointing the feeling in the Family Charter that’s been violated or compromised, and gives opportunity to resolve any conflict
- Hence, creating your ideal emotional climate!
How to Create your Family Emotional Charter
So, last weekend, I finally got down to getting everyone come together to create our family emotional charter! I have modified Dr. Marc’s charter to a simpler version that I find more practical for my family. So here it is!
- Each family member reflects and writes down the top 3-4 feelings they love to experience together as a family
- We then come together to write them on a visual board (the boys took the lead to write them out for us!)
- Everyone gets to clarify the meaning of the word on the board, or if the word is indeed a feeling word. However, no one is allowed to ask why the feeling is important to have for that person! This is key as all feelings are important.
- Everyone then discuss and vote on the top 3 feelings that are most important to experience as a family. We all can share our views, but ultimately this has to be an unanimous vote!
- The children then design the charter to include the agreed feelings in to the charter.
- Each family member signs and commits to uphold the charter!
- We also discuss how we would enforce the charter if someone is not adhering to it.
It’s been a week since we did the Family Emotional Charter and I have to say it has been working out pretty well so far! There seems to be lesser or shorter episodes of conflicts, especially between the boys!