'Secrets of Happy Families': One Man's Mission

Best-selling author Bruce Feiller spent years researching the keys to family bliss.
6:26 | 02/19/13

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Transcript for 'Secrets of Happy Families': One Man's Mission
Happy families are all alike every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. Leo Tolstoy -- that line as the gloomy intro into a doomed love story. But plenty of modern families would love to know about the first it would love to know. But the happy ones really do have in common one -- spent the last few years researching the secrets to Brady Bunch level domestic bliss and tonight -- Sherri what he discovered. -- ABC's Judy check. Could this really be the secret to a happy family. -- -- Kyle Richards star brought those real housewives of Beverly Hills and -- wound to -- -- Or is this a secret sweating it out with my three sons -- Or maybe it's this. Yeah. A -- -- more fit of giggles than anything else but according to this guy. Having a blissful family take -- work. -- Ralph and I it. They say kids don't come with the user's manual. So best selling author Bruce -- set out to write one. I was frustrated I felt like as a parent we were just thought we were lost the shrinks the self help gurus the Stanley expert. Those -- were really stale. He spent years in search of the secret the links are often using his own family is Guinea -- he turned to non parenting do Bruce for the -- of happy families. The secrets some quite surprising. Try moving the furniture -- does not. And hope that the kids pick their own punishment -- what if they're making easy punishments. Frankly it turns out there are girls Ronald -- connection costing up to. To dial back -- usually much harsher than we are a lot of the advice builds kids confidence -- allow what's Warren Buffett's banker told him don't link allowance to chores. For games the folks in -- dissent let to kids failed it motivates. My husband. Every month it seems unlikely that Kyle Richards could be a real housewife and run a tranquil -- -- -- -- -- You could give him life be when your reality star. -- Shane -- and in the long as its goal of only showing up -- nine pajamas and slippers now mail and hand them alone and why that's what I do number. One that's my number one job. It's a job she takes seriously raising -- Alexio. -- -- either crazy I admire and Porsche. -- Willow turns out she and husband Murray TOU man ski instinctively. Leader of a lot of the secrets -- uncovered. Having forks and it's not especially in as they get older it's not easy to get them all four at same time we have to fight -- that all the time. Hard fun moments create memory a stitch in the tapestry of larger family history -- in -- -- -- It you know you I lost both my parents that's really important -- need to. Talk about -- a lot with our daughters and knowing your family's legacy is surprisingly critical. -- do you know test was the single biggest predictor of emotional well being. And happiness many teenage girls gush about their dad like this -- unless there are connected life is lack of to me this. -- -- -- -- -- Now he's. Never in -- into the worthless to -- -- -- love to have that study showed that if girls have a close relationship with their father they'll put off having sex longer. Marie TO is pleasantly surprised. -- And I. Obviously wanted to -- you -- -- says successful institutions have mission statements and all -- that -- Why not family's well -- my mom always you know. Thanks answers and each of your -- experience. -- how can they know what our values -- if we don't articulate that we are saying now this is what's important to mark them. And wacky family traditions also -- happiness the -- -- share a family Bennett admitted it was a little lives mostly recently. -- -- -- -- The father's family happiness is more organized and now what didn't work so well with -- -- handling this. How do you feel there -- And eat it. Small wins then leading results so violent replaced grown up snagging with a list that the kids -- -- he's either accident that they didn't do it right didn't clear the table. The week we introduced the morning checklist into our family we cut parental screaming in half yeah. -- -- the standard here is parental stress are stressed went about these techniques have just gotten us out of being stock. Because the girls are really learning how to -- for themselves. Maximize team spirit -- went komando the goat rocks extreme challenges are run by former green berets. Which brings us back to me and my three sons and this -- -- -- former special ops who believes teamwork is a powerful motive later. -- -- if we have our marching orders. Turns out when we get there will be some bad guys -- from Connecticut -- -- plans. And grab -- 25 counts applied tactic. It. Run up the stairs and engaged the enemy. And -- top down man's ideas start bubbling up from the rank and file. It's always. -- -- -- Felt confident enough to say no I wanna do what a different way but -- -- he proved to be good plan. So suddenly we change what we were doing in real time he gets the confidence that he's playing a -- now. If you can accomplish that include making -- -- money and that is mission accomplished for Nightline I'm juju Chang in New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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