Here’s a sad fact: only about two in five US families sit down to enjoy dinner together each night.
To make matters worse, 16 percent of young adults claim it’s fine to use a smartphone when dining with your family. Unfortunately, those are just the ones who aren’t ashamed to admit it.
Sure, everybody in your family has their own thing going on. But setting aside the electronics and getting together for 20 minutes a day to eat dinner could have a hugely positive impact on your lives.
Have you stopped prioritizing family dinners? Read on to find out what benefits you and your family members are missing out on!
1. Success in Academics
Did you know that time spent eating is the best predictor of superior academic performance? This may come as a shock, but it even beats out time spent studying.
The fact is that children who eat family meals get higher grades and even possess bigger vocabularies on average. So cook dinner or breakfast for your kids if you want to see them on the Honor Roll list.
2. Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention
Kids who dine with their family regularly are one and a half times more likely to have a great relationship with both of their parents than kids who don’t. And kids who feel close to their parents have a much lower chance of turning to drugs and alcohol.
If you want to keep your kids on the straight and narrow, sitting down for dinner with them is a good place to start.
3. Improve a Child’s Confidence
Low-self esteem in kids can lead to issues with socialization, motivation, and happiness. As a parent, boosting the self-esteem of a child often feels like an impossible endeavor.
However, most studies show that kids who eat dinner with their loved ones are more confident. By bringing them to the dinner table every night, you help them avoid isolation, which typically makes low self-esteem worse.
4. Stress Relief for Moms
Children aren’t the only ones who benefit from weeknight dinners. In fact, family meals help working moms ease their stress.
As a mom, dining with your family is a great way to slow down and unwind after a strenuous day at work. There’s nothing more soothing than seeing your child’s happy face at the dinner table.
And if you really want to have fun, encourage your kids to help you prep the meal.
5. More Money to Spend Elsewhere
You’re completely exhausted after work, so you stop at a fast food restaurant on the way home. After entering your front door, you put the food down on the table and then watch the family scamper out of the dining room with their plates.
Not only is it a sad sight, but it’s most likely burning a hole in your wallet too. For example, it costs the average American worker about $2k a year just to buy lunch from an eating establishment rather than prep it themselves.
However, that doesn’t mean you should avoid eating out altogether. Going out with the family to a restaurant like Hans Im Gluck once in a while is a good way to convince them to eat together- – at least for a night.
Start Enjoying Family Dinners
Family dinners offer many tangible benefits aside from just pulling your family closer together.
If you have trouble making time for family dinners during weekdays, focus on having them on weekends. You could also to share a quick snack together or get everyone around the table for breakfast.
Don’t feel pressured to cook anything fancy either. A quick Google search will help you pull up page after page of recipes that take 15 minutes or less to prepare.
And when you get second thoughts about stopping at the grocery store, picture all the money you’ll save by not eating out daily.
Looking for more ways to boost the quality of your life? If so, be sure to check the self-improvement section of our blog for regular updates!