Setting regular goals as a family is a great way to bring everyone together under a common purpose, and if you do it right, it will also help everyone in the family feel more heard and understood.
Step One: Listen to Everyone’s Needs and Feelings
In a family, everyone should love and support one another, but the reality is that everyone’s goals are likely to be a little bit different. Your children are probably focused on different things than you are, but that doesn’t mean these things don’t matter. Listening to what their desires are is an important part of setting family goals that suit everyone. In addition, you and your partner may even have different priorities when it comes to family goals, so make sure everyone gets a chance to voice theirs.
Step Two: Set Short and Long-term Goals
My Time Management suggests setting both short and long-term goals so that you’re not striving toward one goal that seems extremely far away. You can set short-term goals that will help you reach your long-term goals also. For example, if you all decide that you want to go on a summer vacation as a family (long-term goal), your children will need to pass their classes so they don’t have to attend summer school (short-term goal), and you and your partner will need to put money aside each week in able to afford the vacation when the time comes (long-term goal).
Step Three: Make Adjustments
SPARK Parenting states it is important to dream big with your family goals—just not too big. But if your goals are starting to look unattainable, or if something isn’t working, you can make adjustments to your goals without giving up on them. Pushing ahead with something that doesn’t work isn’t a good way to reach your goals anyway, and it’s important to show your children that, in life, we sometimes have to be flexible in order to get what we want in the long run.
Step Four: Have Regular Family Meetings
It can help to have a meeting once a week that will allow you to discuss the success (or lack thereof) you’ve all found in reaching your goals, setting new goals, and of course, discussing how to celebrate goals reached. Because if you don’t celebrate a milestone like reaching an important goal together as a family, what’s the point?
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