First off, let me say I am sorry for the one week hiatus. Things were a little crazy with the holiday weekend, so I had to take a little break from writing..
But, I am back and feeling rejuvenated!
self care for the win!
(The girls enjoying their picnic on our little homestead on the 4th!)
So here I am penning the much awaited family mission statement post. I don’t know why I have gotten so much feedback about people waiting for this specific topic to be posted about. Maybe its because there are a lot of us in the midst of this transition from survival mode to purpose mode, or because having a mission statement that fits our family sounds like it paves the road to freedom…
whatever the reason is, I am glad that you’re here and I hope that you are excited!
So, whats the deal with mission statements? Or what is a family mission statement?
In truth, its just putting the direction and purpose of yourself, or your family, into a written and tangible statement. What are the overarching ideas that you want to govern your home? Where are your priorities right now? What do you want to be important that maybe gets pushed to the back burner?
We talked two weeks ago about creating a list of priorities (its a long post, but worth it – you can read about it here). Hopefully, if you’ve been working on this list, you now have a good idea of what direction you want your family going in. These priorities provide the base for your mission statement. They kind of govern the key points you want to have in your statement.
Now, you can write a mission statement a number of different ways – you can be more and less specific than the next person, have a short or long statement, include lots of detail or have something more general. Remember, this is YOUR statement, for YOUR family – so surrender to the freedom to make it your own!
So here is how I put ours together:
- I looked back over my list of priorities: as a refresher mine were: my relationship with the Lord, my marriage, raising the girls to love the Lord, making homeschooling a major part of our lifestyle, and growing our homestead. I have specific ideas of how to go about these, but this is just a general overview.
- I started playing around with how to word them in a way that made a solid statement. I had seen some in the past that seemed a little too formal for my liking, but I also really wanted to get specifics in there. After awhile, I came up with this:
In this family, we serve the Lord first. We seek to know Him, to love Him, and to be obedient to Him above all things. In this family, a healthy marriage is the backbone. We promise to make time to nurture, protect and grow in our marriage through time alone, regular date nights and making our marriage a priority. In this family scripture reading, prayer and learning about the Lord will take precedent over most things. We will strive to bring up our girls in an environment where they understand the love the Lord has for them and to bring each one up to fulfill the roles and callings that the Lord has on their lives. In this family education is important. We have chosen to homeschool and we give priority to creating an environment conducive to learning. We promise to give the girls the opportunity to grow, explore and discover the things they love and the things that move them. We will strive to offer grace and to adhere to Charlotte Mason’s statement that “Education is an atmosphere, a discipline and a life.” In this family, we want to create a legacy of hard work and self sufficiency. We long to grow in our knowledge and skills in homesteading and we promise to devote time and energy to developing this lifestyle that we believe God has called our family to. We believe in the rewards and blessings that come from working with our hands, sustainably growing our own food and humanely raising livestock. We will journey together as a family as we learn and become more efficient in this area. We believe that if we devote ourselves to these areas of life in this season that we will continue to fulfill our purpose and calling. We are committed to measuring commitments and opportunities, as well as habits, up to these things to see if they are beneficial to the goals of our family in this season.
So I know that this sounds a little on the formal side still, but once I started writing it out, I wanted it to have purpose and meaning and to sound strong. You need to lean into the personality of your family and find the wording that works for your lifestyle.
The best thing about all of this is that we are free to tweak and change things as life evolves and seasons change. But, there is a freedom in developing guiding principals for your home. We all only have so much time and energy we can give – and when we realize that we can edit our lives to fit where we are now and the things that we love, there is joy that naturally follows.
For a real life example, I have had to step back from certain things that I thought would be beneficial but just ended up stressing me out.
I have been invited to join multiple mama groups for homeschooling moms. Each one of them has all of these amazing things that they offer in terms of fellowship, encouragement and growth for moms who homeschool – and all of them seemed like they had something that I NEEDED. But, in truth, one thing I need more than anything else is time at home as a family when Matt is home, and time to rest and recuperate alone. Some of these wonderful groups meet at times where I would have to trade family movie night or an earlier bedtime to attend. So I had to really take stock and evaluate what we were already involved in and how that was serving the areas I felt we were lacking.
- Our homeschool co-op provides wonderful opportunity for fellowship and encouragement at teacher’s meetings. Going to this meeting provides me with a time for growth, adult conversation and time away from the kids. Shifting how I viewed this meeting really showed me what a blessing it truly was.
- Our twice monthly group that I had thought of leaving because it cuts into “school time” provides FREE classes and fellowship for the girls, fills a need for me to fellowship with other moms and meets at a time when Matt is at work. Compared to other groups who met in the evening, didn’t allow kids and would require me to make new friends instead of investing in relationships that I have already started, the time spent attending this group actually makes more sense.
- Because I can count on these events monthly, I am free to stop feeling the need to say yes every time I am invited to another group to fellowship with other homeschooling moms. In addition, now I also have the freedom to find time to spend with some of these moms one on one and strengthen individual friendships.
It may seem ridiculous, but I am the type of person who has a really hard time saying no. I would say yes to events, groups and things I thought I “should” attend, and then feel guilty or resentful the whole way there. Now, having things in writing doesn’t suddenly make the ability to say no come super easily, but it does give me the encouragement and motivation I need to say no because I feel like I am sticking with the plan and the purpose we are creating.
Okay, I promised myself that this wouldn’t be a long post! And here I am rambling on and on. I hope that you find this helpful! If you are looking for some accountability or feedback, I would love to you to come and join our conversation over on Facebook and share your mission statement! I’d love to see them!
And don’t forget to go back to the priorities post and enter our giveaway! I’ll be announcing the winner tomorrow morning!