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12 Typical Types Of Family Members (How Many Are Familiar To You?)

12 Typical Types Of Family Members (How Many Are Familiar To You?)

Every family is unique. At the same time, the same types tend to come up again and again in each clan! When you think of your closest relatives, how many of the following character types do you recognize?

The Caretaker

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    Every family needs at least one caretaker. This is the person who puts everyone else’s needs before their own and always wants to know how you are, how work is going, and whether you need any help during rough times. The caretaker brings you soup when you are sick, and is happy to listen to the story of your latest relationship drama.

    The Controller

    family member-17

      Controllers always have an opinion and they like everything their way, from the dinner menu to the family’s vacation destination. They might be annoying on occasion, but they tend to be excellent planners too! A controller is in their element when given free rein to organize large family events.

      The Peacemaker

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      family member-08

        All families have arguments from time to time, and this is where the peacemaker’s role comes in. They are the one who tactfully separates the two warring relatives, or makes just the right remark to lighten the mood. They dislike seeing family harmony broken, and believe it is better to be happy than to be right.

        The Mess Maker

        family member-09

          Some people just can’t help being really messy. Mess makers somehow manage to get into your living room, make themselves at home, and leave it a few hours later looking like a pile of rubbish. If you live with a mess maker, you have to accept early on that your home will never be spotless again. Unfortunately, they barely seem to realize what they are doing!

          The Quiet One

          family member-10

            Do you have a relative who never quite lets you know what they are thinking? Perhaps they like to keep their thoughts to themselves, or just feel shy in social settings. Occasionally, quiet relatives can let loose if you set them talking on a favorite subject or hot-button issue, but for the most part they remain reserved or even aloof.

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            The Clown

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              It’s usually obvious who plays the role of family clown. This person is always joking around, and doesn’t mind making other people laugh, even if it’s at their own expense. They always have a funny story to tell and really excel at seeing even serious situations from a new, less intense angle. Clowns are often good at entertaining younger members of the family too.

              The Sarcastic One

              family member-15

                Some people never quite get over their teenage sarcasm phase, and drop snarky remarks into conversation every chance they get. This doesn’t always go down too well with the more polite or quieter members of the family. However, a wittily sarcastic relative can liven up any gathering. As long as there is a peacemaker or clown nearby, your most sarcastic relatives shouldn’t cause too much damage.

                The Connector

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                family member-12

                  A connector knows everything about everyone. If you need any family news, they are the person to call. A classic connector is the aunt or grandmother who can spend hours on the phone talking about family gossip. They are also good at encouraging relatives to meet up, even if it’s been some time since the last gathering.

                  The Loudspeaker

                  family member-13

                    A loudspeaker never shuts up – or at least, it can feel that way! They tend to be opinionated, noisy, and want to make sure that everyone knows exactly what they think. Loudspeakers can become irritating, but they are often fun, extraverted people who know how to have a good time. In between voicing their own thoughts (regularly and with much noise), they tend to have a real interest in other people.

                    The Chef

                    family member-07

                      Who is your family chef? This type is always trying out new recipes, and pushing food on other people. If you are lucky, they are a great cook. If you aren’t, you’re in for years of trying to avoid their more “interesting” and “experimental” food combinations.

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                      The Human Dustbin

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                        Every family seems to have at least one person who is renowned for their eating abilities. It could be your sister who can put away six servings at dinner, or your uncle who is always clearing up leftovers from everyone else’s plates. They make sure they always do their part to reduce food waste.

                        The Lazy One

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                          You know that cousin who will happily lie around all day on the sofa, occasionally getting up in search of food? It’s quite incredible just how happy certain relatives are to remain inert for hours at a time. No family would be complete without at least one member who is amazingly good at doing precisely nothing.

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                          Jay Hill

                          Jay writes about communication and happiness on Lifehack.

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                          Last Updated on November 9, 2020

                          10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

                          10 Real Reasons Why Breaking Bad Habits Is So Difficult

                          Bad habits expose us to suffering that is entirely avoidable. Unfortunately, breaking bad habits is difficult because they are 100% dependent on our mental and emotional state.

                          Anything we do that can prove harmful to us is a bad habit – drinking, drugs, smoking, procrastination, poor communication are all examples of bad habits. These habits have negative effects on our physical, mental, and emotional health.

                          Humans are hardwired to respond to stimuli and to expect a consequence of any action. This is how habits are acquired: the brain expects to be rewarded a certain way under certain circumstances. How you initially responded to certain stimuli is how your brain will always remind you to behave when the same stimuli are experienced.

                          If you visited the bar close to your office with colleagues every Friday, your brain will learn to send you a signal to stop there even when you are alone and eventually not just on Fridays. It will expect the reward of a drink after work every day, which can potentially lead to a drinking problem.

                          Kicking negative behavior patterns and steering clear of them requires a lot of willpower, and there are many reasons why breaking bad habits is so difficult.

                          1. Lack of Awareness or Acceptance

                          Breaking a bad habit is not possible if the person who has it is not aware that it is a bad one.

                          Many people will not realize that their communication skills are poor or that their procrastination is affecting them negatively, or even that the drink they had as a nightcap has now increased to three.

                          Awareness brings acceptance. Unless a person realizes on their own that a habit is bad, or someone manages to convince them of the same, there is very little chance of the habit being kicked.

                          2. No Motivation

                          Going through a divorce, not being able to cope with academic pressure, and falling into debt are instances that can bring a profound sense of failure with them. A person going through these times can fall into a cycle of negative thinking where the world is against them and nothing they can do will ever help, so they stop trying altogether.

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                          This give-up attitude is a bad habit that just keeps coming around. Being in debt could make you feel like you are failing at maintaining your home, family, and life in general.

                          If you are looking to get out of a rut and feel motivated, take a look at this article: Why Is Internal Motivation So Powerful (And How to Find It)

                          3. Underlying Psychological Conditions

                          Psychological conditions such as depression and ADD can make it difficult to start breaking bad habits.

                          A depressed person may find it difficult to summon the energy to cook a healthy meal, resulting in food being ordered in or consumption of packaged foods. This could lead to a habit that adversely affects health and is difficult to overcome.

                          A person with ADD may start to clean their house but get distracted soon after, leaving the task incomplete, eventually leading to a state where it is acceptable to live in a house that is untidy and dirty.

                          The fear of missing out (FOMO) is very real to some people. Obsessively checking their social media and news sources, they may believe that not knowing of something as soon as it is published can be catastrophic to their social standing.

                          4. Bad Habits Make Us Feel Good

                          One of the reasons it is difficult to break habits is that a lot of them make us feel good.[1]

                          We’ve all been there – the craving for a tub of ice cream after a breakup or a casual drag on a joint, never to be repeated until we miss how good it made us feel. We succumb to the craving for the pleasure felt while indulging in it, cementing it as a habit even while we are aware it isn’t good for us.

                          Overeating is a very common bad habit. Just another pack of chips, a couple of candies, a large soda… none of these are necessary for survival. We want them because they give us comfort. They’re familiar, they taste good, and we don’t even notice when we progress from just one extra slice of pizza to four.

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                          You can read this article to learn more: We Do What We Know Is Bad for Us, Why?

                          5. Upward Comparisons

                          Comparisons are a bad habit that many of us have been exposed to since we were children. Parents might have compared us to siblings, teachers may have compared us to classmates, and bosses could compare us to past and present employees.

                          The people who have developed the bad habit of comparing themselves to others have been given incorrect yardsticks for measurement from the start.

                          These people will always find it difficult to break out of this bad habit because there will always be someone who has it better than they do: a better house, better car, better job, higher income and so on.

                          Research shows that in the age of social media, social comparisons are much easier and can ultimately harm self-esteem if scrolling becomes a bad habit[2].

                          6. No Alternative

                          This is a real and valid reason why breaking bad habits is difficult. These habits could fulfill a need that may not be met any other way.

                          Someone who has physical or psychological limitations, such as a disability or social anxiety, may find it hard to quit obsessive content consumption for better habits.

                          Alternately, a perfectly healthy person may be unable to quit smoking because alternates are just not working out.

                          Similarly, a person who bites their nails when anxious may be unable to relieve stress in any other socially accepted manner.

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                          7. Stress

                          As mentioned above, anything that stresses us out can lead to adopting and cementing an unhealthy habit.

                          When a person is stressed about something, it is easy for bad habits to form because the mental resources required to fight them are not available[3].

                          We often see a person who had previously managed to kick a bad habit fall back into the old ways because they felt their stress couldn’t be managed any other way.

                          If you need some help reducing stress, check out the following video for some healthy ways to get started:

                          8. Sense of Failure

                          People looking to kick bad habits may feel a strong sense of failure because it’s just that difficult.

                          Dropping a bad habit usually means changes in lifestyle that people may be unwilling to make, or these changes might not be easy to make in spite of the will to make them.

                          Overeaters need to empty their house of unhealthy food, resist the urge to order in, and not pick up their standard grocery items from the store. Those who drink too much need to avoid the bars or even people who drink often.

                          If such people slip even once with a glass of wine, or a smoke, or a bag of chips, they tend to be excessively harsh on themselves and feel like failures.

                          9. The Need to Be All-New

                          People who are looking to break bad habits feel they need to re-create themselves in order to break themselves of their bad habits, while the truth is the complete opposite.

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                          These people actually need to go back to who they were before they developed the bad habit and try to create good habits from there.

                          10. Force of Habit

                          Humans are creatures of habit, and having familiar, comforting outcomes for daily triggers helps us maintain a sense of balance in our lives.

                          Consider people who are used to lighting up a cigarette every time they talk on the phone or eating junk food when watching TV. They will always associate a phone call with a puff on the cigarette and screen time with eating.

                          These habits, though bad, are a source of comfort to them, as is meeting with those people they indulge in these bad habits with.

                          Final Thoughts

                          These are the main reasons why breaking bad habits is difficult, but the good news is that the task is not impossible. Breaking habits takes time, and you’ll need to put long-term goals in place to replace a bad habit with a good one.

                          There are many compassionate, positive and self-loving techniques to kick bad habits. The internet is rich in information regarding bad habits, their effects and how to overcome them, while professional help is always available for those who feel they need it.

                          More on Breaking Bad Habits

                          Featured photo credit: NORTHFOLK via unsplash.com

                          Reference

                          [1] After Skool: Why Do Bad Habits Feel SO GOOD?
                          [2] Psychology of Popular Media Culture: Social comparison, social media, and self-esteem.
                          [3] Stanford Medicine: Examining how stress affects good and bad habits

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