Growing up, my siblings and cousins were always at odds with each other. There was constant rivalry and competition, which often led to arguments and hurt feelings. It became clear that we needed to find a way to bring us closer and develop a stronger bond.

One evening, during a family gathering, my parents came up with a unique idea. They decided to organize a “Sibling and Cousin Appreciation Night.” We all gathered in the living room, and one by one, we took turns expressing our appreciation for each other.

  • I remember my older brother starting, and he spoke about how much he admired my dedication to my passions and how I always supported his endeavors.

  • Next, my younger sister shared a heartfelt message about how my cousin always made her laugh and felt like a true friend. And so, it continued, with all of us taking turns expressing our gratitude and admiration for one another.

It was a transformative experience. Tears were shed, hugs were shared, and many walls were broken down that night. We realized that beneath the rivalry and competition, we truly cared for and appreciated each other.

From that point on, we made it a tradition to hold regular “Appreciation Nights.” Sometimes, it was just among siblings, and other times, we included our cousins too. We also started a gratitude journal, where we would write down notes of appreciation for each other throughout the year.

Read blog Sibling Rivalry Together In Competition

This simple act of expressing appreciation had a profound impact on our relationships. It reminded us of the positive qualities in one another and softened the rivalry that had previously dominated our interactions. We began to genuinely support and celebrate each other’s successes, rather than being envious or competitive.

Additionally, we found opportunities to collaborate and work together on various projects. Whether it was

  • planning family events
  • organizing charity drives
  • or simply helping each other with schoolwork

We discovered that we could achieve great things when we put our differences aside and embraced teamwork.

Today, our bond as siblings and cousins is stronger than ever. We have become each other’s biggest cheerleaders and supporters. We genuinely enjoy spending time together, and the rivalry that once defined our relationships is now a distant memory.

The lesson we learned from this experience is that appreciation and gratitude can be powerful tools in building strong bonds among siblings and cousins. It is crucial to take the time to acknowledge and celebrate each other’s strengths and to find opportunities for collaboration and teamwork. Through these efforts, we can create a loving and supportive environment that nurtures wonderful relationships among siblings and cousins.

Stay tuned for Part 2 in which Dr. Pooja Anand Sharma talks about the tips and activities to form and nurture these bonds!

(The views/opinions are for general information and awareness purpose only. It is strongly recommended that people should always consult the professionals.)

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