Most families only come together during Christmas or similar celebrations then forget to keep in touch all year long. Mwereti Kanjo gathers expert advice on keeping in touch after the festive season is over.
ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s always been said that Christmas is a time for friends and family and as per tradition, most of us do have family get-togethers over the festive season. The only problem is, we end seeing or communicating with certain relatives during this time and maintain little or no contact all year long.
Inevitably, when people who do not see each other often come together, there are bound to be disagreements but at the end of the day, it is fun to be around family, to remind each other of those special moments during childhood and share old jokes.
Without a doubt, such gatherings are among those few rare moments when we have a really good time. Unfortunately, with the busy schedules of todayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s world, it is not easy to make time as everyone is busy trying to make a living.
But this should not be the case. We should make time for our family throughout the year. So, how do you try and ensure that the close relationship felt at Christmas and other special occasions is kept burning?
Effie Somanje, a family counsellor, says when a relationship between friends or family is luke warm, it is a sign that something is amiss. She says in this situation what is needed is effort from both parties. A simple phone call once in a while or meeting up for lunch can help a lot.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Keeping a close relationship is easy. All you have to do is keep in touch. Pick up the phone once in a while and just say hello. If you have children, make them visit their cousins and aunts. Spend one week here and the other week there. In this way, you are instilling the spirit of family within the children and you are keeping in close contact with your relatives at the same time,Ã¢â‚¬Â says Somanje.
Regina Phanga, also a family counsellor, says first and foremost, it is important to understand the meaning of Christmas. You will see that Christmas means God is with us and God is love. So when we are together celebrating, let us love each other and know that God is among us. People who love each other cannot stay apart for too long.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Love is a very important thing; the Bible says so. When we love each other, there are fewer disagreements even when there are many of us. And when we love each other, we always want to be around each other. In that way, keeping in touch becomes easier.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The food that we eat during these celebrations must only be the start. There should be more of the feasts among families just to show each other love,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Phanga.