It sounds just too simple. You might think I’ve lost my mind. But I think I figured out how to solve the world’s problems! We can solve a lot of the worlds problems just by eating dinner with our family regularly. Really. Let’s take a closer look at how many problems we could solve.
Healthier meals will–
* Stop obesity, improve health - stop the rise in devastating diseases like heart attacks, stroke, cancer and diabetes.
* Give you more energy.
* Keep you out of the nursing homes longer.
* Help you have fewer colds and flu.
* Save you money.
* Give you less time to spend in front of the TV getting your mind filled with negative junk.
* Keep you fit and trim.
* Give you better looking skin, hair, nails.
* Build your self-confidence.
* Teach the overall value of good nutrition to your kids.
* Teach your kids, (& spouse?) how to cook healthy meals fast. (these lessons are not getting passed down!)
Plus, a calm dinner will -
* Allow you to actually connect with your family.
* Give you the opportunity to talk with your spouse and kids.
* Let you find out what’s going on in their lives and in their friends lives.
* Make them feel like someone cares enough to listen.
* Let you talk about what’s going on in the world-
- What’s wrong, what’s right?
- What does your religion have to say about it?
- How do they feel about it?
- How do you feel about it?
- What should they do if confronted with a situation?
* Give you time to discuss how your family life can be improved-
- What problems need to be addressed?
- Time, money, pitching in, fairness, dress?
- What’s everyone’s schedule?
- How can everyone work together to work it all out?
Kind of a daily family meeting time.
Did you know that kids who have dinner with the family at least 3 days a week are less likely to engage in risky sex or to abuse drugs or alcohol? It really does make a difference.
The keys to making this work are –
* Having dinner at the table, with no TV.
* A real dinner. Do you ever see CEOs holding important business meetings at McDonalds? It’s just not a place for anything serious. Fast food is for fast eating, nothing more. People naturally associate fast food with -chow it down-. You need a dinner that people will naturally linger over.
* Conversation with everyone being heard. Not judgmental. No yelling. Your biggest job here is to listen. Once you start trying to dominate, any open conversation will stop.
Yeah, it’s hard at first. It’s hard to get used to a new routine. It’s hard to change your habits and make the time to do it. Everyone will want to eat in front of the TV, or in their room, or whatever it was that they had become accustomed to. It’s hard for everyone to wait to be heard. But once the routine is established, it gets easier. Conversations will flow easily. Just be patient. The payoff is priceless.
Now imagine if every family were to do this. We would put a serious dent in –
- Teenage sex
- *** transmitted disease.
- Drug use
- Alcohol abuse
- Drop outs
- Heart Attacks
Imagine how different the world would be in one year.
You know, you can extend your reach too. If there’s a kid who is wandering the streets at dinner time, don’t just sit there and talk about them - invite them to dinner. You can make a difference in their life too.
Do you have a neighbor who lives alone? I’ll bet they’re not eating too healthy, and they’re lonely. Invite them to dinner once in a while.
Who would have thought that changing the world could be as simple as having dinner with your family! Make this important ritual a priority in your family life.
Spread this message on. Let’s see if we can make a difference!
Carole is the creator of CommonSenseLiving.com , and the author of numerous ebooks to help you get control of your life. She maintains that dieting keeps you fat, and if you eat right in the first place, you'll never have to diet again - plus you'll look great, stay healthy and have tons of energy. Find out how you can stop dieting forever