“Idea List: Smooth Sailing Home,” New Era, Oct. 2003, 15
Even when every member on the family ship is pulling together to make the voyage of life as smooth as possible, there are going to be some storms. Here are some suggestions from Sister Karen Workman’s Miami Shores, Florida, seminary class that will help make for smooth sailing on the journey home to our Heavenly Father.
Preventing problems is easier than fixing them. Do things that will strengthen family relationships before arguments occur.
The best way to get along better with your family is to pray, read scriptures, and have family home evening together. Don’t miss these opportunities to bring the Spirit into your home. If you aren’t having family prayers or scripture study, you can start the habit.
Look for ways to show that you love your family. Often they will look for ways to return that love. This brings a spirit of peace and unity into the home.
When things start to get heated, find a quiet place where you can calm down, pray, and read the scriptures. Give yourself a chance to cool off and think about things rationally.
Even if you don’t think you’re the problem, pray that the Lord will soften your heart.
Remember every argument has at least two sides. There isn’t always a right and wrong side. Learning to be open-minded and flexible will help you not only with your brothers and sisters, but with missionary companions, co-workers, and your future spouse.
Communication helps. Once things have calmed down, seek out the family member with whom you have a problem. Letting the problem go too long can allow bad feelings to grow. Talking about problems can help if you do it calmly.
In the end, an apology can go a long way in patching hurt feelings. Be the first to say you’re sorry.