Posted: Dec 31, 2013 8:00 AM
 
If one of your personal resolutions is to spend more time with your family in 2014, creating family resolutions is the perfect way to kick off this goal. By making resolutions as a family, you can work on them together all year long.

Creating family resolutions

Hold a "family meeting" — we highly suggest making it an informal one, over pizza perhaps, to get your family interested from the get-go — to discuss your idea about creating resolutions as a family for 2014. Ask your kids and partner about some of the things they feel your family can improve upon in the New Year. You may have your own ideas as well, but hear your other family members out, too.

A few ideas could be:

  • Becoming healthier/more active together
  • Starting a family hobby (such as doing family fun runs in your town or taking an art or karate class)
  • Eating dinner together at least two or three nights a week
  • Volunteering together
  • Saving up for a family vacation
  • Sharing in household duties
  • Trying new restaurants around town

The ideas, of course, are endless and should really reflect the personality of your family. The resolutions should have an element of fun to keep the family interested beyond Jan. 1.

Get started

Once you've chosen a few family resolutions, delegate responsibilities to each family member to keep everyone accountable for their part of keeping up the resolution. For example, if you've decided to save up for a trip, you can research places your family wants to go and estimate costs for the trip, your children can do extra chores around the house or neighborhood or get after-school jobs (depending on their ages) to earn extra money and your husband can rework your budget to see where the family as a whole can cut back in the name of a fun getaway.

Stick to it

When you first make your resolutions, vow to help one another out and support one another, especially when one family member is having a tough time seeing it through.

Sure, resolutions sound well and good... but maintaining them for the long haul is another thing. When you first make your resolutions, vow to help one another out and support one another, especially when one family member is having a tough time seeing it through. For example, if you've decided to eat healthier as a family and your husband grabs a double cheeseburger from a drive-through for lunch on a particularly busy work day, don't abandon all efforts. Instead, help him avoid this situation again by packing him healthy to-go lunches that he can grab if he's too busy to make time for a healthy sit-down lunch. By getting to the root of the problem, you can begin creating new habits that will help your whole family stick to your resolutions.

Reward yourselves

After the first few weeks, take a look back at how your family has changed since creating your resolutions. Ask the members of your family how the changes have impacted them. If there are areas where you've struggled, ask your family how you can collectively improve in those areas. Most importantly, reward yourselves for making some positive improvements in your life.

However, don't resort to old habits as a "reward." For example, if you've resolved to eat better, don't go out for ice cream in the name of a job well done. Instead go see a movie or spend some time in the kitchen together working on a (healthy) new recipe.

More on resolutions and family time

5 New mom New Year's resolutions
How our family bonds over BBQ
Family time: Getting back to basics

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