It may be the start of the school year, but it’s time to begin with the end in mind. Does your family have a rutter? A rutter is a mariner’s handbook of written sailing directions. Before the advent of nautical charts, rutters were the primary store of geographic information for maritime navigation. Ironically, it’s the rudder that steers the boat.
If we are going to be proactive we need to determine where we want our actions to lead us. Someone once said that if you have no direction, any direction will do. Unfortunately, there are too many directions in this world that can lead us right into a life of misery and unhappiness. We began the year with the five TeRRiFiC citizenship traits because we were beginning with the end in mind.
If you stop to think about the hopes and dreams you have for your children, they likely have to do with integrity and strong character. People we respect most and are great leaders can be trusted, are respectful, act responsibly, play fair, and care for our fellow man. Success and happiness stands on a foundation of strong character. While we Grow Great Kids! it is essential that we help to lay that foundation and build everything else on top of it. When our lives are grounded on sound principles, the direction we move and live guides us toward a happier and more successful life.
There is an old saying that “living without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder”. A ship worries on top of the water without direction and can easily lose its way when the rudder isn’t in the water. A captain with a hand on the rudder guides it to its destination. It’s way too easy in our modern society to get caught up in an abundance of things to do, thoughts to think, and places to go. Without a rudder directed by our principles, we can easily stray from our course. Guided by the end in mind and strengthened with the power of positive principles, each and every child can achieve the success they seek and deserve.
Heart – Talk about your favorite hero and the principles they live by.
Mind – Develop a personal or family mission statement that describes your values, roles, and goals.
Body – Set a specific goal for a favorite skill, sport, or hobby.
Soul – Consider what kind of person you want to be and list 3-5 activities that will help you to be that person.
Writing a Family Mission Statement
Have you ever considered writing a personal or family mission statement? We wrote a family mission statement over twenty five years ago and it continues to guide us to this day. Mission statements identify our values, roles, and goals. They provide direction and guidance in the midst of a very fickle world. Stating this mission and hanging it somewhere in our homes helps us to sow the thoughts regularly and act accordingly. I have created a simple guide to help you write our mission statement (see attached). You likely have a strong sense of the mission of your family, but writing it down and making it readily available can help keep your family focused especially when days are difficult.