First call for help on book: Mission statements

1. If anyone wants to see what I've been knitting, I wrote a post with pictures on Moxieville yesterday.

2. Thank you for all telling me to get a grip about the braces yesterday. I thought a lot about why I'm so worried about it, and this is what I arrived at: When I got braces put on (when I was 31), the pain and shock to my system of the whole thing spun me into depression for a week or so, and I had to struggle to get out of it (using all the tools I've learned over the years). I have depression, and I know it's possible that my son has it (it tends to go cross-gender) so I'm scared getting braces put on will throw him into depression. I am so grateful for my own depression, but hope my boys are spared. So.


And now my first call for help for the book:

I know we've talked a bit in the past about writing a mission statement for parenting. I did it when I was pregnant just because it seemed like a good idea at the time, and it ended up helping me focus on what really mattered. In the middle of those kind of crazy moments in which you can't really see the horizon of common sense, the mission statement kept me from going all weird.

I don't remember exactly what mine was at the time, but it included wanting my boys to be able to give and accept love and form healthy intimate relationships, do productive work that they get satisfaction from, and understand and use appropriate behavior.

Did any of your write mission statements? If you did, would you be willing to share either what they are, or how you went about writing them, or both?

If you share that means you're giving me permission to put them in the book. So also include exactly how you'd like to be billed. Something like "Magda, Michigan" or "Moxie" or "M.P., Ann Arbor, MI" or "Magda Pecsenye," or any other moniker you want.

If you don't want to give me permission to use it in the book, don't post it here. You can post it on yesterday's comment section if you feel like it, but just not on this comment section. Fair?

34 thoughts on “First call for help on book: Mission statements”

  1. The running mantra I have in my head when dealing with my children is that they won’t necessarily remember the details of the things I’ve said. But they will remember how I made them feel, and I want them to feel like home is a safe place full of love and forgiveness and lots of laughs.

  2. I’m not sure I ever formed it into a “mission statement,” but from the beginning I felt that my job as a parent was to enable my children to become self-sufficient adults. That does not mean expecting them to be able to do things before they’re ready (they need to have certain physical, mental and emotional skills), but it also means not holding them back, not doing things for them that they can do themselves.Loving them unconditionally is a given; I can love them while NOT loving their behavior. But also, love is not defined by material things; it is defined by experiences and actions.
    You’re welcome to use my full name (which you have on Facebook ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

  3. I never wrote a mission statement. While parenting small children, that would have been brain work that I was just not capable of doing. I’m keeping the big picture in mind though, which is getting them out of the house as self-sufficient, happy adults.You can call me SarcastiCarrie, mom of 3 boys

  4. Our biggest goal, and one we have posted on our fridge, is to raise kind children. We feel so much can be wrapped up in that. We want them to be kind to others and to themselves.Felicia, San Diego, CA.

  5. This is the letter I wrote to my munchkin before she was born; I thought of it at the time as a sort of mission-statement.”i want so many things for you, darling munchkin: for you to be a healthy,
    happy, compassionate person, to feel comfortable in your own skin, and
    to never lose your interest in learning about life, the universe, and
    everything. always remember that you are so very, very loved.
    love, mama.”
    (Yes, my husband and I are dorky enough that I had to put in a Hitchhiker’s Guide reference.)
    As for a moniker, I’ll go with “whitney,”

  6. Not long after the Wall came down, I went with a fellow group of horse people to parts of the former Soviet Union where we, well, stayed on farms and rode horses. The group leaders took two sorts of groups to the former USSR, horse groups and church groups. They said they found the former much easier because its members (a) are unphased by substandard toilet facilities; (b) can sleep anywhere; and (c) know that our comfort is not the most important thing. I never formalized it as a mission statement, but I figure I can do worse than to raise my kid to have those 3 qualities.If you use any of that, will you just label me Alex, mom to 1?

  7. My husband and I vowed to raise healthy, confident, and well-adjusted children. First and foremost, we strive to do so through leading by example. We teach the power of good intention in driving behavior. My husband and I promised our children to discipline via the Latin origin of the word, which means to teach, not reprimand. Our children will grow up to learn that they can do anything they want to do if they work hard enough, and no matter what they do, they will always be surrounded by our love.Having a formal or informal โ€œmission statementโ€ is very helpful when you come to a tough crossroads and you need to make an important parenting decision. It all comes back to the values you have set forth for you and your family. When decisions stem from those values, not only do you set a good example for your kids, you feel good about yourself as well.
    I am Kelly from the new blog I hope this helps ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I’ve never written a parenting mission statement; perhaps since one of my most important desires is not to make a thing out of the whole thing. I try to constantly recognize that Mouse belongs to herself, and that the point of childhood is to grow up. I try not so stand in her way. I also consider it my job to find her teachers and opportunities, to help her see ways around obstacles if appropriate, and obviously to love her. I can sign on to Alexicographer’s list, and add that you need to be able to get yourself to walk one more mile.

  9. I’ve never written a mission statement for parenting, but if I was going to try, I’d say we want to raise our girls to be intellectually curious, kind, and emotionally whole adults who are productive members of society while maintaining strong extended family connections.Dawn, Chester Springs, PA

  10. I read an article about running your family as a “business”. I loved that idea. One suggestion was that any successful business has a Mission Statement. I wanted to keep it simple, so my little ones could learn and understand it. I also think it can be applied to any situation. It’s this: To love and be loved. To ensure that each person recognizes their own value and the value of others. To live each day with a spirit of gratitude. — Jacqui, Enterprise, AL

  11. We say this to our girls, and I guess it could be heard as a mission statement,as well: “It is our job to raise you so that you know how to take care of yourself, and so you know what you need to do to be healthy and strong.” It’s usually preceded by something like, “I’d just like to live on cupcakes, too and I’d like to let you, but…” Or “I know you feel mad, and I wish I could make you happy right now, but…” We have found that framing our relationship with our children this way makes it easier to follow the path we want to follow, in terms of our parenting, our relationship with them, and in terms of the adults we hope our children grow up to be: self-reliant, resilient, healthy and strong.

  12. I’ve never told anyone this, but my parenting motto comes from something I heard in Toddlers and Tiaras. I know. I KNOW. A less-crazy mother said to her daughter, ‘happy heart and a good attitude.’ Something about that rang true. Not exactly a mission statement, but there you go.And if you’re reading this, Jillian (my sister), don’t laugh. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Our mission statement is: First give kids a strong foundation, then give them tools and space to build their own lives. The first tools are our family values: Be Respectful (of yourself and others), Be Responsible (for yourself), and Be Safe (because dead is a waste of the milk I poured into you).And I’m Tricia from IL.

  14. My job as a parent was to prepare my child for adulthood; my mission was to be able to say: I did the best job I knew how and by God it was good enough. (and when she turned 18, I was able to say just that!)There were a lot of details associated with the goal, but that’s it at a high level.
    you can credit me as KathyB

  15. I think it’s awesome you’re writing a book ๐Ÿ™‚ Go YOU!I never did a mission statement, but I would say that my mission statement then and now (5 yrs post-childbirth) would have some common elements (prepared for long happy life, good person, honest person, etc) but would now include things I wouldn’t have even thought of back then. Maybe you could have some kind of worksheet/exercise that could help them narrow their feelings regarding different parenting issues (co-sleeping for instance) and where they come from. I was so against co-sleeping before kids. After kids I just wanted to be with my kids so much that it didn’t bother me at all that they wanted to be with me too. I think my weirdness about co-sleeping came from how I was raised, not from my own personal values regarding love, and how I express love. Maybe the mission statement isn’t really the place for this exercise, but something that came to mind when you brought it up.
    Good luck on your book!

  16. @Alexicographer, I think yours is brilliant. ๐Ÿ™‚ Unselfish, grateful, flexible, acceptant, considerate, gracious, open-minded, thoughtful, self-reliant and a whole bunch of other things all roll up into those three things, and I love that they’re concrete. My mom has a similar mission for teaching the kids how to travel: 1) They experience the experience rather than judging it, 2) They treat the guide/staff/local people as equals, 3) They eagerly learn and joyfully teach.

  17. My goal with raising my children is exactly the same as the one my parents have had and my mom still tells me so:”I just want my kids to have better life then us”…little happier, little easier,little wiser, a little more stable….it connects all the generations

  18. I read my mission statement in a book, Montessori from the Start. It struck me harder than anything has struck me before. I’m paraphrasing (very broadly paraphrasing): My goal as a parent is not for my children to be happy. Happiness is temporary and outside my control. What I want is to give them a foundation for a life of self-respect and independence, a life of integrity and meaning.Erin, mother of 2

  19. I never wrote down a formal mission statement but it was definitely something I thought about, particularly as I had no idea at that time how much involvement A’s dad was going to have in the process. I basically decided on this; I wanted to make sure she never doubted that she was loved. A whole lot of things came underneath that, such as knowing that someone cared enough about her to create some boundaries so she might grow into a competent adult, but basically, as long as she knew she was loved, we could probably sort out everything else along the way.Kerry- Auckland, NZ

  20. Responding to naysayers about our open adoption helped me solidify my mission statement when my daughter was a baby. I am here to love, protect, nurture and guide, not to own her. She belongs to herself and to God, not to any adult. You can credit me as Karen, mother of one through open adoption

  21. Remember that kids are people too.Avoid assigning personality traits, particularly out loud when the kid is within earshot.

  22. Check with your college, esllciapey if they have a Christian and/or Service club and see what they offer. Also check with your church.Be VERY careful because there are many scams out there. I would look at the websites for the North American Mission Board, International Mission Board, Youth With A Mission, etc. as they are reliable. Youth With A Mission is for college students, as well, and I believe there is another called Go and Send.My daughter and I will be going to China next summer with a group called Bring Me Hope (.org).References :

  23. What a great premise! Good luck!! I hear you on the house plan , too. We also had a 5 year horozin when we bought our house just over 5 years ago, and we’re nowhere close to leaving. We have a ton of work left to do on it, and then we actually want to enjoy it for awhile. So we may be here quite indefinitely

  24. Hi, Magda. This is super unrelated, but I want to help out with your book. Though, I don’t want to put my mission statement here. Ha ha. I want to help out by offering some assistance on your editing or proofreading. I am actually a pretty good one at that. Hope this helps. Good luck with the book! <3

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