Traditions are regular rituals that you perform at the same time or in the same way as a family. They can be big or small, performed daily, weekly, monthly or annually but they encompass beliefs and practices which are passed down from generation to generation. They can enrich families, strengthen bonds and create a sense of identity.
Examples of Family Traditions
Family traditions do not have to be complex; more often than not they are simple, easy and exciting activities! Some examples are;
- Family sporting activities or competitions e.g. playing chess or soccer
- Family meetings
- Movie Nights, Pizza Nights or Dinner Dates
- Decorating the Christmas tree
- Special Sunday breakfasts or lunches
- Bedtime stories
- Holiday road trips
- Ceremonies carried out for a child’s first day at school or graduation day
- Annual tree planting
- Morning prayers
Benefits of establishing Family traditions
- Create an Identity
Family traditions are unique stories that resonate with a specific family. They tell a story about the family’s background, cultural and religious heritage. When passed down from one generation to another they serve as an eternal reminder for events that have shaped the family over a period of time. Understanding your past and knowing that you belong to something bigger than you instils self-confidence and provides a sense of belonging, security, continuity and routine.
- Encourage Bonding
Because the planning and performance of the activities include all members of the family, traditions are therefore the glue that keeps a family together, build stronger connections and unity. Face to face interactions also mean that family members get to know and trust each other intimately.
- Teach Values
Through family traditions, strong values are passed on between parents and children. For example, playing sport together teaches the importance of physical exercise, having family dinners together teaches the importance of solidarity, bedtime stories teach the value of reading and education whilst having movie nights teaches the importance of entertainment in a safe environment. Children are most likely to be disciplined, have respect, empathy and healthy relationships.
- Create lasting memories
Children are bound to remember family traditions than the toys or gifts given to them when they were young. Whilst they will outgrow their material acquisitions over time, the impact of their childhood memories is more permanent as these experiences remain imprinted in their minds for years to come. These can be a source of future comfort or serve as a reference point whenever one or more family members are no longer alive.