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Setting family goals


It’s that time of the year when everyone is starting out with good intentions, whether it’s to get fit, reduce weight, eat more healthily, give up bad habits – the list is usually quite long.  Most goals are individual and are in the control of that person who has set them


Many of these good intentions fall by the wayside as life gets in the way.  So what’s the secret of succeeding in achieving the goals that are set?  The answer is – an action plan!


Goals don’t have to belong to only one person.  You can set family goals and it’s a great way to build up to special occasions and events.


Planning the family holiday is probably the biggest one and it’s great to get everyone involved.  However, how about planning a family activity once a month?  This could be a joint effort or the responsibility for organising it could rotate, including older children taking their turn.


With the high profile that healthy nutrition has today (not to mention obesity), planning a family approach to what goes on the shopping list and meals that everyone likes could be a great goal to set.


If the goal is a tidier home with easier-to-find belongings, the goal setting would include suggestions to improve things and maybe some negotiation over what is reasonable and what isn’t.


There are so many things that can be achieved and having a goal setting session en famille – and agreeing to do your bit can ensure a much better success rate than simply demanding everyone does X.


The process


You can’t do a goal – it’s an outcome.  What you can do is create a to-do list or action plan and assign each action to a family member.


Better still, if you have ‘to-do by’ dates too, everyone has a clear idea of what they’re working towards.


Set up a calendar where everyone can see it (on the fridge door?) with the deadlines and initials of each person shown.  Encourage everyone to put time in their diaries to do what they’ve agreed to as well.


If this sounds a bit like overkill for a family, believe me, it isn’t!  These are the tools of success and everyone will get more done and get that sense of satisfaction from having achieved something they’ve set out to do.


You’ll also be teaching your children life skills that will help them to achieve more in their lives, as they grow up and leave home.