One More Evaluation

By Ty Salvant

What are your summer plans? Do they include camp, visits to grandparents, vacations or just downtime?

Regardless of what you do this summer, how you spend time is vital.

Parenting with intention can be more challenging now because we all want a break. While the summer is a great time to unwind and decompress, it is also a time to assess, evaluate and plan for your next life phase.

Reflect on the experiences you want to create, habits you’d like to eliminate or values you’d like to cultivate.

Ask your family the following:

  1. What is working well, what do you love about our family?
  2. What systems make our family work?
  3. What would others like to emulate from our family? The answers to these questions will help you determine your strengths.

You must also explore what is not working.

  1. What feels most chaotic?
  2. What do you like the least about our family?
  3. If you made the rules, what would you change?
  4. When are we most likely to lose our temper with each other?

While these answers are more challenging to hear, they can provide the most benefit since the answers are your weaknesses.

Once you know what does not work, you can find solutions by asking:

  1. What systems would alleviate stress?
  2. Do we need help – a housekeeper, cook, sitter, lawn maintenance, accountant, organizer or repair person?
  3. Do we need to alter bedtimes, mealtimes, activities or repurpose a room?
  4. Can you see the bigger picture?

Use these answers to create opportunities for improvement.

From social media and cell phones to drug overdoses and mental health, many factors threaten our families. Ask are we using technology responsibly? Are we putting others and ourselves at risk unknowingly? Do we share similar expectations about drinking and drug use? Are we getting enough sleep to eliminate the threat of drowsy driving?

Use this Canva form at to answer the questions individually and come together as a family to share and discuss your responses. Use the information to create a plan for individual family members and collectively. Then, make sure you spend time during the summer creating habits to improve your quality of life instead of creating bad habits you will have to break in August.


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