Businesses have them as a way to keep everyone on track, moving forward in the same direction, and focused on what is important.

Families should do the same.

Maybe it is time your family sat down and developed your Values, Vision and Mission.

Don’t just develop them….write them down somewhere – maybe even somewhere visible.

VALUES or VALUE STATEMENTS identify what is important to you as a family, what you hold dear, and how you all agree to behave towards each other.

Some examples might be: “Everyone has the right to be heard”, “We treat each other with respect”, “Having fun is important”, or “We all help with the work, we all join in the play”.

Develop your family’s Values/Value Statements together, since everyone has to agree on them.

If you develop them together, you will also agree to hold each other accountable to them.

Your Values list can be as long or as short as you like, but everyone has to be involved in writing them.

The VISION talks about where you are going as a family.  What is your ultimate goal (and we aren’t talking about a trip destination)?

It is a very high level statement, one that you can always be striving towards.  It is a dream.

An example might be: “We are a family that is always loving, learning and listening to each other” or “Our home is a place where all people feel welcome”.

Your Vision should be one sentence so that it is easy to remember.

The MISSION describes what things you will do as a family on a regular basis to move you closer to making your VISION a reality.

It can be written as sentences or bullet points, but it should be a declaration of how your family will live.

Some examples might be: “We will have at least two sit-down meals, one fun family activity and one kid-cooked meal every week”, “We will celebrate our successes, no matter how small”, “If someone has upset us, we will let them know within 24 hours or else let it go”, “Every night ends with a hug”, or “We will regularly give to those who are less fortunate, whether it is money, clothes, toys or our time”.

Once you have all agreed on your Values, Vision and Mission, write them down.

Live them.

Revisit them and update when needed.

Now your family has a compass…letting you know where you are going and how to get there.

Let the journey begin.