Friday, January 25, 2013


FWR Asks:  What's happening to our kids' Work Ethics?

Our kids are losing work ethics because:
  • Kids now spend spare time on phones and video games
  • Now, parents aren’t home much to supervise
  • Schools have dropped their passing standards
  • The media show kids the comfortable lifestyles
  • We are now in a “labour-saving” era
What happens to kids with little work ethic?
  • They can’t handle the demands of higher education
  • The work world is a big shock
  • Kids can’t get good jobs
  • They end up, if lucky, with just a minimum pay job
How can we recover the work ethic for kids?
  • The phone/video times should be limited
  • They are made responsible for daily household chores
  • They need to be trained to offer help to others
  • They need to be in some club group that stresses work values
All this is obvious. The cure for the work ethic problem lies first with the parents. They have the unpopular job of reducing kids’ pleasures and introducing chores. No parent wants to do this unless they realize the long-term effects on their children.

FWR Says:  Work ethics come when families share responsibilities

Friday, January 18, 2013


FWR Says:  Helpfulness - Ways to Family Wellness

There are a number of tried and true ways we can be helpful in our family.
  1. Just be with someone - that’s all - just quietly pay attention. This is particularly true when someone is suffering and we don’t know what to say. Better often to say nothing, just be there.

  2. Be supportive - This overworked phrase is more said than done. Support requires listening. It requires positive feedback. Often repeating what was said works best. “I understand” hardly ever works.

  3. “How are you?” - This is helpful because it gives the message we really are concerned. Inquiring questions about personal details is usually not helpful.

  4. “Can I help?” - This sometimes can help but most times people just want to be heard and understood. Most folks are not looking for advice – unless they ask.

  5. “I love you” is the best of all when our feeling is honest.
Our body language says even more than our words. Eye contact, polite closeness, and smiles, usually tell the real story of our interest.

These ways of helping come from the professional practices of skilled counsellors. It is vital that we don’t try to be counsellors ourselves. That is beyond our reach.

FWR Says:  Our family wellness grows when we are helpful to each other

Saturday, January 12, 2013


FWR Says:  Let’s look at Anxiety – Inside and Out

Richard Louv, Chairman of the Children and Nature Networks, says:

“A growing body of research links more time in nature with a reduction of stress and depression”

Ours is an age of anxiety. Ours is also an age moving from rural to urban life, that is, from trees to cement. The question here is:

“How much of us is linked to nature?”

The big answer came from Thoreau 100 years ago:

“Civilization is found in wilderness”

Translated – we are part of nature and nature is part of us.

Looking at some anxiety facts:

     We relax when we move from the cement to the trees

     Walking is now is big – for both physical and mental health

     We look for nature in the garden, the park or in camping

     Golf is good but fishing is better

In today’s lifestyle, we are losing touch with nature. We now spend our time in boxes – home, office and car. Older generations lived in the country, were fed from the garden, and walked as much as they drove.

In our cement generation, we are hemmed in with others, night and day. We are seldom alone. The constant togetherness breeds complex relationships, often the sources of anxiety. Our sole nature contact is often only the plant on the windowsill.

Here are suggestions from Dr. Louv:

     Plant a garden, a shrub or a tree

     Encourage the children to play in the dirt - caves, holes, forts

    Create a nature club for families to share outdoor experiences

FWR Says:  There is no beauty as great as in nature - the sunset, the countryside, the river. It seems that we are created to be part of nature, not separated, not anxious.

Friday, January 04, 2013


FWR Says:   Breaking News for Family Wellness - Friendship

Malcolm Gladwell, in his book “Outliers:  The Story of Success”, reports on revolutionary results from recent studies:
  • Those in active multi-generational families (clans) suffer from heart and stroke conditions at rates 20% less than the general population.
  • Clans members live longer and better regardless of diet and exercise
  • Both children and adults benefit from the securities of the clan whatever age.
Here are the results of one study.  Italian immigrants from the mountainous region of Roseto settled in the Pennsylvania mountains.  The conditions in Pennsylvania were close to that of Roseto.  These people, named Rosetani, maintained their original Italian culture separate from the neighbouring cultures.  They kept their rural work routines, preserved their language and avoided the other warring clans.  Their diet and exercise habits were risky by today’s standards.  The rate of heart attack and stroke conditions remained 20% lower than that of the States.  

What does this mean for today’s family?   
  • Grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins are vital members of the clan

  • Today’s parents’ big job is to promote the relationships of the wider clan

  • Children and adults of all ages will benefit from the collective security

FWR Says:  This puts the clan as a top priority for family wellness!