In a hectic world where many sit in front of screens and eat food, which lacks in nutrition, the kitchen table stands as a sentinel, where people stop the other things they may be doing and focus their attention on the meal. – Dr. Joe Kosterich
How often do you & your family actually sit down for dinner at the kitchen table with distraction?
In 2017 the kitchen table has become an obsolete place in most homes. Its rare to find a family who has enough time to sit down & eat together, without it being a special occasion. We are so consumed with technology & activities that we’ve forgotten the most important things: family & quality time.
As children get older their schedules become just as busy as ours. We forget that they still need that family bond & connection, despite how much they deny it! I speak from experience, I’m a single mom & its difficult getting my 18 year old interested in doing anything with me.
Here are 4 reasons why you should insist on family dinner at least once a week:
I know this sounds like one of those fat-shaming articles, but that’s a later post.
However, children who eat dinner at the table with their family have a 40% chance of NOT being overweight. Kids between nine & fourteen that eat dinner with their families have healthy dietary patterns. Studies show they eat more fruits and vegetables.
Strengthens family bonds & communication
During dinner we get to sit down & evaluate our day. More family talks occur during “table time” than during any other activity. Mainly due to the elimination of technology, no cell phones, laptops, or tablets. This allows for open communication for the entire family.
Improves Conversation Skills
Everyone is lacking in conversation skills because our phones have become our main outlet to the world. We all could use a refresher course on connecting with the people in front of & around us, this includes our family. Sitting down for a meal togther & not allowing technology to be present forces us to communicate effectively with those around us.
We teach our children how to properly speak with, & to others. We encourage them to express themselves freely. Teaching them to give their opinion, & accept others, something we still struggle with as adults.
Teaches team work & leadership
I know you are probably thinking how can eating dinner together possibly teach me team work or leadership!
Well its not about the act of eating together, its the actions that lead up to dinnertime. This is an opportunity for your family to work together to build the environment of togetherness. Setting the table, making the meal, or cleaning the kitchen are all tasks that can be completed prior to sitting down together. These tasks promote working together for a greater cause.
Sitting together at the dinner table to partake in a meal creates a safe & loving environment free of distractions creates better social skills for us all, but it allows us to cultivate healthy relationships with those closest to us.