Relationships: How to Be a Better Sibling

Two girls standing in a meadow and holding a bouquet of flowers in front of their faces
Credit: Daga Ellaby in

How to Be a Better Sibling

5 Tips to Enhancing Your Sibling Relationships

by J.M. Troppello

I grew up in a large family. Some siblings have moved away. My one brother lives as far away as in Italy with his family. He was stationed there years ago in the army. He met an Italian woman who worked near the base he was stationed at. They got married and have 4 young adult children. My other brother and his family live about 45 minutes from my house. I live next door to my sister and her girls.

“You may be as different as the sun and the moon, but the same blood flows through both your hearts. You need her, and she needs you.” – George R.R. Martin

Of all my siblings, I’m closest to my sister. It wasn’t always that way due in large part to our age difference of seven years. When I was 14, she was 7. I was busy helping my mom with household tasks and taking care of things while she worked. I didn’t ‘have time’ to spend with my sister.

“The power of a sibling who knows everything about you, who knows the family you grew up in, who carries half your genes—there’s nothing quite like that.” – Jeffrey Kluger

However, through the years, we’ve grown closer. I’m blessed to live next door to her and that we have a very close relationship now. If you want to become a better sibling, consider using the following 5 tips to enhance your sibling relationships.

1. Listen

Listen more than you speak. Be present in each conversation you have with your siblings. When you spend time together truly be there. Don’t spend time scrolling through your phone when you should be developing your relationships.

2. Respect

Always act in a respectful way. Of course, you won’t always agree with each other. But your conversations and interactions should always be done respectfully. Value each other and treat your siblings as you’d want to be treated.

3. Communicate

Respond maturely, don’t react immaturely. Learn how to develop a higher emotional intelligence level so that you can interact more positively and productively. Mature communication can significantly enhance your relationships.

4. Cultivate

Spend time together. You may not be too close with your siblings and wouldn’t want to hang out. However, if you want to develop a closer relationship with them and become a better sibling, you’ll need to spend time with them. Make a diligent effort to invest in the relationship and nourish your bond with them.

5. Love

Build your relationship on love and compassion for each other. Choose to act selflessly. This will likely be difficult since human nature is generally selfish. You have to make a choice to love others and offer grace and forgiveness when necessary. Hopefully, the more you spend time together with your siblings, the deeper your relationship will grow.

Become a Better Sibling

If you want to enhance your relationship with your siblings, put these five steps into practice in all your interactions with them.

  • Listen

  • Respect

  • Communicate

  • Cultivate

  • Love

“Family is not an important thing. It’s everything.” – Michael J. Fox

You can make a positive difference in the lives of those around you when you choose to act positively and productively each day. You could be the catalyst that will change the trajectory—in a good way—that your sibling relationships will go in the future.

Article syndicated by Inspiration Realm on


About the Author

JM Troppello in Mustard Seed Sentinel

J.M. Troppello is an author, writer, and poet. She is the publisher of the online Christian lifestyle magazine, Mustard Seed Sentinel.

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