This has been so much fun, and so thought provoking in the last week. A big thanks to Phyllis over at Verified Mom for hosting this Word a Day blogging challenge. I am behind, but working hard to catch up this week. The next word in the Word a Day challenge is: Family. I thought about this long and hard and all the different perspectives I can show, but, it IS Tuesday, and so I am going to turn THIS into my Top 5 Tuesdays today and talk about “Family Goals”
A little background, I am in no way an expert on “goal setting”, I do however know, that unless you have goals, you really have nothing you are striving for in life. It’s hard to write a goal when more than one person is involved as well, since to have a “group goal” everyone needs to understand and agree on the goal and the outcome at the end. It gets even harder when some of those people are little and don’t understand. I have been working on this for a few days now as a way to help our family hit different levels in life, Ever hear the saying “there’s got to be more”??? Sometimes, you have to work through areas in your life to get to the more, and THAT is where our family goals are coming into play. I am going to give you 5 steps to making and achieving your “family goals”
1 .Determine Your Path as a Family. This has 2 steps really. First, you need to figure out where you are as a family. What is working, what isn’t, and focus on the good at the point you are at right now. Example: My family is growing (as in my kids are getting bigger), we know potty training is just around the corner. We are blessed that we get to stay home, so potty training won’t be as hard for us, like it is for some. Step 2 is to figure out where you WANT to be, and determine a WHY. Example: We know we would love to have both our littles potty trained. It will save us time, money, and also help our littles be more independent.
2. Pick a Goal to Work On. I kind of already gave you the example we have (there are lots of other goals we could and will be working on). You have to choose one goal and make it something you feel is achievable. If you think the goal you have is to lofty, could you break it down into smaller goals??? Potty training for us is a smaller step toward being able to leave the house easier, go more places, as well as spend less on a sitter to maybe have a date night as a couple. In families with older kids, this goal should be seen as something positive, and everyone should agree. If a goal is getting help around the house, the parents might come to the kids and list: spending more time doing fun stuff (movies, game nights, outings) as a family, happier parents which means a happier environment at home, (maybe even) earning money from chores to buy things they want. Keeping the goal positive and showing everyone what is in it for them as well will help get them excited and want to be involved in the process.
3. Write Out a Plan. This will mean different things for different people. For me, it means writing out what we are trying to achieve and then writing out steps to get us to that point. We are starting out putting our kiddos on the potty at predetermined times and rewarding them when they potty. From there, we will move to allowing them to tell us when they have to go, and rewarding that (still keeping the predetermined times, until they no longer seem appropriate). The last step is to lessen the amounts an frequency of the rewards, until going potty is just as natural as taking a drink, or playing with a toy. I am choosing steps that will work for us, and that will give us the desired outcome. Your steps will vary based on the age of those involved, and you may even get some input from older kids as to what the steps should be. Helping to create the plan will give ownership and keep everyone vested in achieving the goal.
4. Set Plan into Motion and Reward Progress. Each plan will have it’s own reasonable way to measure the success of said goal. You can choose rewards in the Write Out a Plan step, or, you can surprise your family and reward based on effort spontaneously. Some of this will depend on the goal itself since some goals have built in rewards: helping around the house, makes parents happier and that could mean a “Yes” or “maybe” instead of a “No” next time kids ask for something. It could also mean more time to spend as a family and do fun things. However, giving allowance or money for chores done, can be another reward as well. Where as in our case with potty training, the reward needs to be established up front in order for the littles to understand and WANT to work toward the reward. Regardless of how you reward, rewarding efforts toward achieving the goal keeps everyone on track and makes the change a more pleasant one.
5. Celebrate Achievement. Once you have achieved the goal, make a big deal out of it. Have ice cream for dinner, or, make everyone’s favorite meal/dish. Make sure to thank everyone for their efforts and talk about how excited achieving this goal makes you. Give a a few days, and then start on the next goal (or next step in the broken down goal)
So, there you have it, my guide to making “family goals”. I hope this helps you tackle that next step in life your family wants/needs to take.
Do you make “Family Goals”???
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