[ From DailyOM ]
Take time to develop a plan of what qualities are important to you as a family; generosity, volunteering, kindness?
Family planning generally encompasses questions about when to have our children and how to be financially prepared for the future, but it can also include questions that are more creative and visionary for your family. For example, you might consider and plan on what qualities you would most like to emphasize and develop, and which experiences you would like to place the most value on, within your family unit. One of evolution’s greatest gifts is the gift of experience, which teaches us what worked in our own families of origin and what did not. This information will be exceedingly valuable in envisioning our own family’s ethos.
Perhaps you feel that the world needs more people who are practiced and capable in the art of generosity. With this in mind, you might develop a family tradition of setting one day aside each month to give to the people around you. This could be as simple as making extra portions of a delicious soup, or many loaves of bread, and bringing them to friends and neighbors. Most children love the act of giving, and allowing them to be the ones to present the food will make them very happy. It will also give them positive memories and set a lifelong pattern of generosity. On a larger scale, you may decide that travel and education are your family priorities, and design your lifestyle to suit that philosophy by traveling extensively or living abroad. On the other hand, you may decide that putting down solid roots and building community means the most to you and your children, choosing to spend most of your energy and resources in one chosen spot.
The act of determining what you value most and how you will pass that on to your children is both empowering and creative. As your family grows and your children have ideas of their own, you can incorporate them into the process. In this way, you fulfill the additional purpose of teaching your children how to envision and create their own reality. Most of all, they will learn that life is rich with potential and that expressing their deepest values empowers them to create a life that will be of benefit to the whole world.