Craving More Connection with Your Family? Try Creating a Family Mission Statement
As a family therapist, some of the most common themes I hear from families seeking support are:
“We are all so stressed and so busy all of the time”
“I feel like I’m failing as a parent–I just can’t keep up”
“How do we know if we are making the right decision?”
“My kid is struggling and I don’t know how to help”
One of my favorite ways to guide families is to help them identify their core values through creating a Family Mission Statement. This can be a fun and collaborative process that allows families to slow down, connect, and take a look at what really matters to them.
Whether your family’s values center around fun & joy, individuality & self expression, or hard work & perseverance, a Family Mission Statement can be a great tool for bringing your family’s intentions and strengths to the surface. Working together to explore your family’s values and purpose can create a strong foundation to feel grounded when navigating challenges, planning for the future, or making difficult decisions. Even the youngest family members can get involved in the process of creating a Family Mission Statement by incorporating art and playfulness.
Feel like giving it a try?! Here are a few steps to get started:
Schedule time to sit down together as a family. Find a time and place that can be as free from distractions as possible.
Spend a little time “warming up” by asking yourselves some starter questions. These might sound something like:
What does it look like for our family when we are functioning at our best?
What is your favorite family memory?
How would we describe our family to someone else?
Brainstorm values–allow space for all ideas at first so there can be as much creativity and participation as possible. Some examples of values might include:
Narrow down your values to try and find the ones that are at the core of your family – select the ones that seem to be at the heart and soul of your home. If you need extra support with this step-try looking through family photos and noticing what values shine through as you reminisce together.
Write a statement that represents each core value. For example, a family who holds a core value of “gratitude” may use a simple statement such as “we are thankful.”
Display your mission statement in your home! Write it out and hang it on the refrigerator, use drawings to display your family’s values “in action,” save in your phone to reference when needed.
If creating a Family Mission Statement sounds interesting but feels a bit overwhelming, here is a fantastic website with a step by step kit that can help you through the process each step of the way:
With the hustle and bustle of daily life, your Family Mission Statement can serve as a guide for connection and inspiration for the ups and downs of your family’s journey. Give it a try and see what you discover!
Written by: Jenna Butzow, MSW, LICSW