We recently chatted about how to set goals for yourself for the year, but what about setting goals as a family? Setting family goals is such a favorite event in our household–it’s exciting to think about what direction we want to take as a family and feel a united effort in accomplishing that goal!
In this post, I will walk you through the system that we use to set our family goals together. But first, let me get one thing out of the way: you are a part of a family, whether you are married or not, or have kids or not. While this post has me working with my kids and husband on a goal–I highly recommend that you make this work for you & your situation. I remember we did this system in our pre-kid era and it was really fun & effective.
OK, let’s get started!!!
1 | Have a Scheduled Weekly Family Night
Our family has set aside one night a week (Monday nights) as a family night. These nights are incredibly fun for us. They give us a chance to spend quality time together as we learn a lesson (aimed at our goal), have a treat, and do a fun activity. I highly recommend having that set up for your family.
Also, by having fun activities & treats involved, it makes it much easier to have a little lesson buried in there!
2 | Create a Family Vision
Before we start to discuss family goals, we first talk about a future vision for our family. Here’s an example of what our family vision is like:
- We come together and have fun, even when the kids are grown up
- The kids see our home as “home base” and would want to come see us & have a good time with us.
- We go on regular vacations together
- Our children are raised in the Gospel of Jesus Christ
- Our family has financial freedom
- We talk to each other with love and kindness
- We serve those around us
3 | Set Yearly Family Goals
Next family night, you take that vision and turn it into a variety of goals for the year. This is one of my favorite family nights. We get out a giant white board and all of us brainstorm what we want to have happen before the end of the year. As we come up with these tasks, we keep that vision from Step 2 in mind.
I love this activity because the kids get involved and it’s hilarious to hear what they say. This year my son said “Giving more”—after more questions, we found he wanted us to GIVE HIM more gifts! Ha! Nice try buddy!
We come up with roughly a dozen things that we’d love to happen. Here is what we wrote for this year:
- Improve our health
- More family activities (going to the park, games, etc)
- Regular family prayer
- Regular family scriptures
- Express gratitude better
- Talk with love to one another
- Have a cleaner home
- Be more prepared for Church on Sunday
- No credit card debt
- Eating out no more than once a week
- Go to the temple every other month
- Give more (yeah, we still kept that on the list!)
- Serve others more
4 | Give Each Family Night a Theme Based on the Family Goals
Now that we have the list, those are the topics for our family nights for the next few months!!!
So before we even END the goal-setting family night, we determine what topic we will start with (often this is one we are struggling with the most) and assign who is going to do what next week. Here is what it looks like for our family:
- Lesson: Getting Ready for Sunday (Kristi)
- Treat: Candy (Jack)
- Activity: Board game (Mom)
- Prayer (Dad)
At the end of each family night, we pick what topic on our list we will focus on next–or sometimes we might decide to continue studying that topic together.
5 | The Lesson
Next let’s chat about what the lesson is like. Our kids will get a little help with preparing the lesson, but honestly, at ages 5 and 7, they come up with some pretty good stuff!!! I often feel like they are better at teaching the lesson than being taught in the lesson!
Quite often we take a story, video, talk, or scripture passage that is related to one of our family goals. Then the teacher has some questions about it for the rest of the family.
Next, we discuss it and come up with specific actions we can do that help us improve at that family goal for the week.
That particular goal becomes our FOCUS for the week.
For example, one of our family goals is to talk with love more. So one week, I wrote it up on the refrigerator. Also, any time one of us started to go a little cray-cray on the other person, we would gently say, “Speak it with love.” I know, if someone said that to me I’d go insane. But it really worked. It helped my kids to pause and think of how to rephrase it more lovingly. Also, since they helped to create the family goal of speaking with love, they felt a greater responsibility to actually do it. It became far less of me just being a nag.
If you have this vision in your head of your kids listening quietly as someone gives a lesson, think again! Most likely there will be utter chaos!!!! We try to encourage them to pay attention, but I don’t recommend planning a huge lesson if kids are involved because we have to repeat a lot with them getting distracted. Sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to get answers to questions. But for the fraction of the lesson that does “stick” with them, it’s incredibly worth enduring the chaos!
6 | Recognize those Working towards Family Goals
Now this is something I haven’t done yet, but I’m going to start this year. During family night, I want to take a moment to recognize different actions I saw certain family members do during the week that helped move us towards our family goals.
7 | Revisit the Goals Regularly
During each family night, we are looking at that board of family goals and taking a brief moment to talk about how we are doing and how we can improve. That keeps it FRESH in our minds!
There you have it!!! Now if you want to be taken more step-by-step through this process & get additional tips, you can get my Free Workbook + Online course, simply register for my Order in the Home course below: