23 Steps to Wholesome Living for the Whole Family

In this fast-paced world where everyone seems to be constantly juggling multiple responsibilities, it’s easy for our well-being to take a backseat. But embracing wholesome living for the whole family is so important and good for us.

Picture this: vibrant meals that please even the pickiest eaters, energizing activities that bring smiles and laughter all around, and a nurturing environment that helps each family member thrive, together or apart. Sounds like a dream, right? Well, all it takes is some effort and time!

In this guide, we’ll delve into what wholesome living means, why it’s so important, and provide practical ideas to help you move your family towards more wholesome living. From nourishment and holistic health to bonding activities and finding balance, get ready to create a positive and happy home life for yourself and your loved ones!

Let’s jump into revolutionizing the way your family lives, loves, and thrives. This is only the beginning of a wonderful journey.

Wholesome living for the whole family pin

What is a wholesome family life?

Wholesome living for the family is a holistic approach to living that brings the different aspects of family life together to form a harmonious and fulfilling whole. It’s a lifestyle choice that prioritizes personal and familial happiness, health, and well-being. 

Imagine a puzzle, with each piece representing a different part of family life: nutrition, exercise, communication, emotional wellness, quality time, and more. A wholesome family life ensures that each piece is carefully cared for, valued, and placed.

Deep down, wholesome families are built on something special—an unwavering commitment from parents or guardians to instill positive values, trust, security, morals, and open communication. These qualities create the nurturing and supportive environment needed for family members to thrive, together and apart. 

For example, when we prioritize nutrition, we not only nourish our bodies but also create healthy eating habits and appreciation for good nutritious food. When we get active together, we foster not only physical fitness but also bond through shared experiences and create lasting memories. When we prioritize open and supportive communication, we build stronger relationships that last a lifetime and develop a healthy foundation of trust and understanding.

By embracing wholesome living, families create an environment that nourishes the body, mind, and soul of each family member and fosters a sense of unity and togetherness. 

Getting good sleep is key to wholesome living for the whole family

1. Get good sleep

Good sleep is crucial at every age, and it’s hard to move on to other more advanced wholesome living practices before nailing down the basics like good sleep, nutrition, exercise, and drinking enough water.

Getting the proper amount of sleep has so many benefits for our physical and mental well-being. It supports growth, learning, memory, regulating emotions, and overall health. Keeping the whole family well-rested sets everyone up for optimal functioning, improved mood, better cognitive ability, and a healthier lifestyle overall.

The best way to do it? Establish consistent bedtime routines, create sleep-friendly environments, limit screen time before bed, avoid stimulants, get in regular exercise, and maintain a consistent sleep schedule. 

Double-check – are your family members all meeting their sleep needs?

  • infants (4-12 months) need 12-16 hours
  • toddlers (1-2 years) require 11-14 hours
  • preschoolers (3-5 years) should aim for 10-13 hours
  • school-aged children (6-12 years) need 9-12 hours
  • adolescents (13-18 years) should aim for 8-10 hours
  • adults (18+) generally require 7-9 hours of sleep per nigh

2. Eat more nourishing food

It seems straightforward, but by nourishing our family’s bodies with wholesome, real food, we set a positive example for our children, promote long-term wellness, and enjoy the benefits of increased energy, improved health, and a positive relationship with food. 

To make the switch to more nourishing foods, start small but mighty. Swap out sugary snacks for fresh fruits, whip up delicious homemade bone broth hot chocolates, or dive into a bowl of natural yogurt topped with crunchy nuts and juicy berries. Then, make whole foods a priority and learn to cook staple meals from scratch. 

Ditch the processed and fast foods (or drinks) that often sneak in unhealthy fats, sugars, added preservatives, and loads of sodium. Remove artificial sugars and switch to natural sweeteners. Take advantage of cooking in bulk and freeze the rest. Diver into meal planning, prepping, canning, and whatever else you think might make your at-home cooking easier and keep you on track. And feel free to explore more gut-friendly foods into your diet for more of a health boost. Fermented options like sourdough, kefir, and sauerkraut are full of goodness!

CHECK OUT: Our list of favorite gut-nourishing recipes that use bone broth

3. Declutter and organize

Decluttering and organizing your home is the foundation for a wholesome environment that helps the whole family feel calmer, happier, more motivated, and more in control.

By decluttering, you create physical and mental space for what truly matters. Clutter can overwhelm our senses, leading to stress, anxiety, and a feeling of being constantly weighed down. You don’t need to become a minimalist, but let go of the excess and surround yourself with only the things you need and/or love. 

Organizing compliments decluttering by making sure that everything has a designated spot. When everything has a home, it becomes so much easier to keep things tidy and find what you need when you need it. This saves everyone time and energy, allowing you to focus on the activities and experiences that truly enrich your family life.

Plus, decluttering and organizing as a family can be a bonding experience. It teaches valuable life skills like decision-making, responsibility, and teamwork. Involve everyone in the process, encourage open communication about belongings, and make it fun and collaborative. When you work together towards a common goal, you strengthen your relationships and create a shared sense of accomplishment.

4. Decorate wholesomely 

Creating a wholesome environment for your family goes beyond decluttering and organizing; it also involves the way you decorate your living space. By incorporating items into your decor that reflect your family’s values, journey, and accomplishments, you foster a stronger sense of belonging and unity. 

Consider using plants to bring a touch of nature indoors. Use colors that are soothing, calming, and joyful, like soft blues, warm earth tones, or greens. Surround your home with meaningful artwork, family pictures, or cherished crafts and mementos. These personalized touches remind everyone of cherished and shared memories.

Don’t forget to prioritize functionality and organization in your decor, too! Choose furniture that is not only beautiful but also comfortable and practical for everyday use. For example, add practical storage solutions that help keep clutter at bay. Tired of dealing with a constantly cluttered entrance table? Opt for a convenient catch-all clutter bowl to keep things more tidy.

Don’t forget to involve your family in the process! Encourage your children to decorate their own spaces, discuss their preferences, and embrace their creativity. By engaging everyone in the process, you create a living space that truly reflects your family’s unique identity.

5. Establish consistent routines

Establishing predictable routines leads your family to healthier habits and a happier home. Let’s borrow some wisdom from SMART goals and apply them to create routines that support your family’s aspirations.

For example, if your family is determined to “drink more water,” it’s time to get specific. Set a clear target for each person’s daily water intake. How about a challenge to conquer eight glasses a day? To make it foolproof, incorporate a routine that helps everyone succeed. Every morning, make it a family ritual to fill up reusable water bottles.

But here’s the secret ingredient: modeling healthy habits. Instead of preaching, let your actions speak louder. Show your family the power of your example by embracing the very habits you wish to instill. When your home becomes a hub of healthy routines, it creates a thriving environment for everyone’s well-being, setting the stage for a lifetime of great health and happiness.

RELATED: How to create a family laundry system that actually works

6. Make open and honest communication happen

Open and honest communication helps a family strengthen bonds, build trust, and resolve conflicts. Open communication creates deeper connections. Family members express their thoughts, feelings, and needs with less fear of judgment. By openly sharing, you create space for genuine conversations, problem-solving, and personal growth.

Start by setting dedicated communication time or “family meetings.” Set aside regular moments each week where the whole family can come together to go over important topics, share their thoughts, aspirations, and address any concerns. Encourage active listening, where each family member gives their full attention and truly hears what others have to say. Being respectful is key. Lead by example and be willing to initiate conversations, ask questions, remove distractions, and share your own thoughts and feelings, too! 

Better yet, make communication a part of your daily routine. Embrace vulnerability and encourage honesty, especially when it’s difficult. Encourage open conversations during mealtime, car rides, or family activities. Ask open-ended questions that promote discussion and deeper connections. Make it fun!

Teaching children healthy conflict resolution

7. Foster healthy conflict resolution

Teach children how to resolve conflicts peacefully and respectfully. Encourage active listening, compromise, and finding win-win solutions. Model effective conflict resolution strategies within the family.

By equipping your children with the tools for healthy conflict resolution, you not only strengthen family bonds but also prepare them for future relationships and interactions outside the home.

8. Forgive

Forgiveness contributes to wholesome living by fostering emotional well-being, healing relationships, and promoting inner peace. It allows us to let go of anger, resentment, and grudges, freeing ourselves from the emotional burdens that can weigh us down.

Practicing forgiveness in the family creates understanding, empathy, and compassion. It teaches empathy, conflict resolution, and the power of second chances. Forgiveness isn’t about forgetting or condoning but releasing negative emotions. It’s a conscious choice for growth, healing, and harmony.

9. Establish core family values 

Family values have the power to shape the people in your family to become the kind of people you all strive to be, and it’s especially helpful for little ones. They guide how families navigate challenges, make decisions, and communicate.

Reflect on what matters most to your family—your principles, beliefs, and aspirations. Do this by engaging in open discussions, allowing everyone to contribute their thoughts. Together, identify core values that align with your family’s vision for a fulfilling life. You can look up examples online for inspiration!

Once established, actively integrate these values into your daily routines. Regularly discuss and reinforce them, emphasizing their importance and how they shape your actions. Create routines and traditions that embody your values, like volunteering or enjoying family meals together.

By consciously defining and living your family values, you instill more thoughtful values in your children, and pave the way for future decision-makers!

Wholesome living for the whole family by creating family traditions and rituals

10. Create family traditions and rituals

One of the best ways to reconnect with your family is through family traditions. Traditions and rituals have a magical way of weaving beautiful memories and strengthening the bonds within a family. They create a sense of stability and togetherness and offer a comforting rhythm to our lives.

If you’ve established family values together, it’s an easy next step to define traditions and rituals that fit well into that vision. Keep it simple, and flexible, involve everyone, and be consistent and committed. Think of activities or occasions that hold special meaning to everyone like holidays, birthdays, or even simple things like a family game night or weekly brunches. 

Some examples: A weekly family movie night where everyone takes turns choosing a film, or a yearly camping trip where you hike and explore nature together. 

11. Celebrate everyone’s progress and successes

Celebrating the progress and successes of everyone in your family is an essential ingredient in creating a wholesome and nurturing environment. It not only brings motivation and happiness to the person being celebrated but also strengthens the family bond.

Pay attention to the progress toward a goal, big or small, of each family member. Acknowledge and praise their efforts. Rather than only focusing on the end result, focus on celebrating the effort, growth, and small victories toward their goal. Cheer each other on and offer words of encouragement, and encourage siblings to be each other’s cheerleaders, too!

Highlight the perseverance, determination, and growth that led to the success to foster more motivation and resilience in pursuing future goals.

12. Find the right balance

Finding balance is about juggling responsibilities, passions, quality family time, and self-care in a way that promotes overall well-being and a sense of fulfillment. Balance is personal and unique to each person, so it’s about finding what works best for you while also considering the needs of your loved ones. 

Start by prioritizing tasks, setting realistic goals, and organizing your schedule. This lets you allocate dedicated time to different areas of your life, making sure that no single aspect gets overtaken by others. Don’t be afraid to say no when necessary and establish boundaries that protect your time and well-being.

Balance is a dynamic concept that evolves over time, so be open to adapting and adjusting your priorities as life changes.

13. Give each other space

While spending quality time together as a family is important, it’s equally important to recognize each person’s need for alone time or independent activities. Every individual has unique needs, preferences, and boundaries, so encourage and respect personal autonomy and privacy.

Allow each person to have their own personal space and time for self-reflection, relaxation, and pursuing individual interests. This can be as simple as making sure everyone has their own designated space in the home where they can retreat when needed, like a bedroom, a reading nook, or a dedicated workspace.

14. Practice family mealtime

Family mealtime brings everyone together, nourishing not only our bodies but also our hearts and souls. It’s a time when the whole family gathers around the table, setting aside the distractions of daily life to connect, share stories, and create memories.

Family mealtime is a chance to catch up on each other’s lives, to laugh, to listen, and to truly be present in each other’s company. Have as many meals together a week as possible with all family members present and ideally at least once per day. Studies have shown that regular family meals have numerous benefits like healthier eating habits, more stability, and comfort in our busy lives. It’s found to be especially great for children and has been linked to higher academic achievement, improved communication skills, and reduced risk of behavioral issues. 

More screen-free family time for wholesome living

15. More screen-free quality family time

With screens and devices dominating so much of our daily lives, we need to be more intentional about how to step away from them. By incorporating screen-free activities into family life, you create a space for genuine connections, personal growth, and shared experiences. It contributes to a sense of balance, well-being, and overall wholesome living, allowing families to thrive and create lasting memories together.

Set aside designated screen-free time where the entire family can disconnect from electronic devices and engage in “real life” activities. Go to the park and have a picnic or throw a ball around, go on a hike, build something together, bake, go biking, paint, play board games, cook together, have deep conversations… just have good old-fashioned fun with it! Do it once a month, weekly, or daily.

16. Assign age-appropriate responsibilities

Empower each family member, regardless of age, with meaningful age-appropriate tasks and responsibilities that contribute to the smooth functioning of the household. This cultivates a sense of contribution, accountability, and teamwork within the family.

Children learn the value of fulfilling responsibilities and become proud, capable, self-confident individuals. By modeling responsible behavior and a strong work ethic, adults can set a positive example for their children. This could mean taking care of household finances, maintaining the home, or fulfilling work-related commitments.

This teamwork not only lightens the workload but also teaches important life skills like time management and organization.

17. Use appropriate discipline

Discipline is not about punishment; it’s an opportunity to guide and teach our children to make positive choices. Use appropriate methods like open discussions, resolutions, and consequences. By doing this, you create an environment that promotes emotional stability and respectful relationships, while cultivating essential life skills for your children. 

Communicate clear rules and expectations, praise positive behavior, and listen without judgment during conflicts. Guide children in problem-solving, considering different perspectives. Sometimes, let them face the natural consequences of their actions, like losing privileges when they don’t listen after being warned. By experiencing the consequence of losing certain privileges, they understand the direct link between their behavior and the outcome.

18. Connect with nature

Engage in outdoor activities as a family to promote physical fitness and connection with nature. Plan hiking trips, bike rides, or explore local parks. Spend time playing games, having picnics, or simply going for a leisurely walk. We’re so far removed from our roots and nature, and making time for it can feel so uplifting. Connecting with nature together as a family is the perfect opportunity for bonding and creating memories.

19. Get regular exercise

Make physical activity a priority for the whole family. Engage in regular exercise and encourage active lifestyles. Take walks together, play sports, go for bike rides, or find other active activities to regularly do. Exercise not only improves physical health but also boosts mood and reduces stress.

Learn new skills like bread making

20. Never stop learning

Cultivate a love for learning and personal growth within your family. Encourage curiosity, exploration, and a thirst for knowledge. 

Have skills and hobbies that you’re working on and let your children see and sometimes participate in. Encourage your children to pursue their interests and hobbies, and provide them with resources and support to further develop their skills. By fostering a love for learning, you empower your family to embrace new challenges, adapt to change, and cultivate a growth mindset.

CHECK OUT: This ultimate list of homemaking books helps you brush up on so many wholesome skills from sewing to natural remedies to cooking and more!

21. Encourage individuality

Celebrate each family member’s unique interests, talents, and strengths. Support their individual pursuits and provide opportunities for personal growth and self-discovery.

Encouraging individuality also strengthens the bond within the family as each member feels valued and respected for who they truly are. Embrace the diverse set of interests and talents within your family, and encourage each other to shine in their own unique ways.

22. Keep company with good people

Surround yourselves with positive, supportive, and like-minded individuals. Engage in social activities and build relationships with people who share similar values, interests, and aspirations. This helps create a supportive network and promotes a positive environment for the entire family.

23. Protect your family from toxins

Create a toxin-free living environment by reducing exposure to harmful chemicals and pollutants. Use natural cleaning products, choose non-toxic materials in your home, and be mindful of the products you bring into your daily lives. This promotes overall well-being and a healthier living space for your family.

By minimizing toxins in your living space, you reduce the risk of allergies, sensitivities, and diseases associated with the build-up of toxic exposure. It’s especially important for little ones who are more vulnerable to the effects of toxins.

Toxins surround us, from our beauty products to our food and our cookware, and good marketing can deceive us. Toxins accumulate and affect us in subtle ways. Getting informed on the effects of different common toxins will help keep you motivated to ditch the stuff and find more thoughtful alternatives. It doesn’t always mean more expensive, it could be as simple as washing your produce with vinegar.

Start by getting informed about common toxins found in everyday products and seeking out safer alternatives. Take the time to read labels and avoid ingredients like parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, PFOA and PFAS, triclosan, synthetic dyes disguised as natural dyes, and artificial fragrances. Look for natural and/or organic options where possible or explore DIY solutions using household staples like vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils. Making these small changes can have a big impact on the health and well-being of your family.

RELATED: See our list of the very best non-toxic waffle makers on the market! Spoiler alert: most are not as safe as they claim.

Wholesome family walking through field together

Benefits of wholesome living for the whole family

When a family embraces wholesome living, magic happens! It has profound and long-lasting effects on the overall quality of life and well-being of family members and instills lifelong values like:

Healthy habits and overall well-being

By prioritizing nutritious eating, regular physical activity, and self-care practices, families establish a foundation of well-being. Besides being good for your health, these habits promote positive thinking and overall vitality.


Wholesome living equips family members with the necessary tools and skills to navigate life’s challenges with strength and grace. By facing challenges together and supporting one another, families develop the ability to adapt and bounce back from setbacks. This resilience helps family members navigate life’s ups and downs, teaching valuable lessons in perseverance and problem-solving.

Stronger relationships

Spending quality time together, engaging in shared activities, and supporting one another’s growth creates a deeper sense of connection. Family members develop a strong bond built on trust, love, and understanding, leading to more meaningful and fulfilling relationships.

Better communication and conflict resolution

Wholesome living emphasizes open and supportive communication. Your family learns to express their thoughts, feelings, and needs, which fosters understanding and empathy. This skill supports healthier conflict resolution since family members learn to listen, validate, and find mutually beneficial solutions.

Nurtures growth and personal development

Each family member is encouraged to explore their passions, pursue their interests, and set and achieve their goals. When families foster a nurturing and supportive environment, they are able to help each member reach their full potential and celebrate small wins.

Lasting memories

Engaging in family activities, creating traditions, and participating in quality time builds a collection of happy experiences. These memories become cherished as they reflect the love, laughter, and togetherness shared within the family. Shared memories like these create a strong sense of belonging and connection.

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