The Healthy Hedonist

A fun lover's guide to great health

hedonism, n. the pursuit of pleasure; sensual self-indulgence

- The New Oxford American Dictionary

My Relationships

How can I teach Healthy Hedonism to my kids?

Children can be gradually taught to appreciate it through a weekly "special family dinner" ritual one night a week. The announcement goes something like "Okay, kids, this is family time. Turn off the tube." With younger kids, it might be a game night, or a family video night. Come puberty, it's good to teach them some social graces, along with the art of conversation. Enlist them to help set the table nicely, light the candles, and turn on dinner music. "Yes, kids, we're going to enjoy each other's company tonight." 

They might not appreciate the occasions immediately, but learning to sit at a table and eat a civilized meal is excellent preparation for all sorts of adult situations, most of them positive. Also, being a family together around a table is a circle. The circle is a symbol of familial strength. 

Research has shown that kids from families that eat together do better in school. It could be because they feel more secure. Or it might be that they learn to participate in adult discussions. Regardless of why it works, when they have grown up and are living in different parts of the country, they will treasure the memory of these occasions.