The Family Mission Statement

Businesses and organizations often have a mission statement that helps to guide them in their mission and purpose. This idea of a mission statement shows up often in leadership books and conferences. The mission statement is important because it sets the purpose and direction of the organization.

But have you ever thought about turning that around and applying it to life at home? Families are not unlike businesses. There is work to be done. There are goals to meet. There are budgets to follow. There is a lifestyle to maintain.

First, I want you to ignore the part about business where people want to make money. In regards to family, compensation is of a different currency. So if you have to think in terms of increasing your profits, I want you to think about increasing the amount of love you have.

What is the purpose or mission of your family? This is actually a difficult question for me to answer. I have a hard time finding the words for it. When I do try to spell it out, it ends up being much longer than a short and sweet mission statement. The leadership books say a mission statement should be simple and concise. Mine is not yet complete, but I have learned a few things along the way.

If you don’t have a purpose or direction for your family, then it is very easy to get caught up in the current of our culture. Our culture tells us that we have to reach a certain level of lifestyle to be happy. It says we need to have more of this and we will be happy. The truth is, when you get there or obtain those things, you just see the next level and set your goals to obtain more. That path never ends. There will always be someone who has more than you do. Those who reach the top in that game desire the life of the simple.

Maybe you don’t have a mission written down, but I bet you have an idea of the direction you are leading your family. If you are trying to lead your family, then you must have an idea of where you are going. The question is, who is really deciding where you are going. Are you letting other people and circumstances determine your goals and direction? I used to lead that way, and it led me down a path that I would not survive if I kept going. I am still digging myself out of that hole.

Maybe you are recovering like me. Maybe this is a wake up call for you. I hope that I at least got your attention. I know families that written mission statements that are framed on their wall. But that part is not necessary. It is more important that your mission is written on your heart. So if you think writing it down is hokey, then ignore that part, but I hope that at least you begin to think about it. What direction are you headed now? Where will you end up if you keep going that way? What change in direction might help you out today?

What do you think about family mission statements? Do you have any tips on how to maybe write one?