Traditions and rituals are not restricted to what is printed on the calendar or in the religious text: over the years, your family doubtlessly has developed activities, celebrations, and foods that you repeat habitually for specific purposes.
What is a Family Ritual or Tradition?
Very Well Family describes it this way: A family ritual is a set of behaviors that are repeated and that are symbolically meaningful.
Small or Big Families
No matter the size of your family, or those that you consider family, rituals can be beneficial. You may already have a ritual or tradition in place and not even realize it. Take the time to think… do you all have secret handshake? A family recipe you all share and make often? Do you all gather for football Sunday? Do you all have a pizza night or a board game night? A shared bedtime story? Does your family run the annual 5k before Thanksgiving?
The Psychology Behind it
Children and adolescents face physical, mental, and emotional instability as they meet adulthood. Providing meaningful rituals and traditions can be the only stability they have to improve the outcome of their development. New adults face instability too. Financial, new relationships and, for some, relocation. These meaningful rituals and traditions can also have a positive impact on our young adults. Read more
Routines vs. Rituals
A routine is an everyday mundane, meaningless practice, a need to get it done, so we do it. It is a checklist we check off from the time we wake up to the time we lay down. Routines and rituals are used to communicate family values, create a strong emotional bond, and provide structure for family life. Rituals can vary from cultural or ethnic groups. What one group views as a tradition or ritual can be meaningless to the next.