The time has arrived to reflect on the year gone by and our hopes for the coming year. If you’re like me, you might decide upon some goals for the coming year. This year, I would like to suggest 12 goals that, though challenging, will strengthen your family and fill your life with greater joy. You can pick one or pick them all. The most important aspect of choosing is to enjoy the reward of a more intimate family.
- Resolve to listen intently and deeply to your spouse and children.
- Resolve to go on a date night with your spouse at least one time a month. (You don’t even have to leave the house for these date nights.)
- Resolve to set aside 20 minutes a day to talk with your spouse about your lives and the life of your family—not the controversial things of politics or the drudgery of daily “to-do’s” and planning, but of your hopes and dreams, things you’d like to do together, or fun things that happened during the day.
- Resolve to tell your spouse and each child “thank you” at least one time a day.
- Resolve to play, laugh, and smile every day with your family.
- Resolve to write each child and your spouse a letter of gratitude and appreciation this year.
- Resolve to read a marriage or parenting book with your spouse and put the ideas into practice.
- Resolve to attend a marriage workshop.
- Resolve to learn the stats for your children and your spouse.
- Resolve to learn about a topic or activity that interests your spouse or one of your children so you can discover ways to support them in their passions.
- Resolve to look for daily opportunities to serve your spouse and children. This could be as simple as getting them a glass of water when they’re thirsty or something as complex as completing a chore they normally do.
- Resolve to say “no” more often to things of lesser importance (surfing the web, video games, a TV show) so you can prioritize spending time conversing with your family or engaging in activities with your family.
- Pick a hobby or activity that your child enjoys and engage in that activity with your child at least one time a week.
That’s actually a “baker’s dozen” resolutions from which you can choose. Each one will strengthen your marriage and/or your family. Pick one. Pick two. Pick them all. Whichever you choose, resolve to strengthen your family this year.