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Parenting with a goal in mind

Here are some words Kristen and I use to describe our long-term hopes for our kids. 

  1. Independent-minded.
  2. Dependent on a loving God.
  3. Recklessly, hope-filled dream chasers.
  4. Happy and simple adult relationships.

We jokingly sum up our goal of parenting like this, “We don’t ever want to see our kids on Springer.

That’s not the most articulate thing in the world, it doesn’t lay everything out, but it does keep the end-goal in mind.

What’s Your Goal?

When I have this conversation with fellow parents I’m always a bit shocked that few can articulate what they are trying to do from a long-term lens. To me, it makes sense that I start with the big parenting goals in mind and work backwards into daily life.

For instance, if I want my children to be independent thinkers, I ought not shut them down when they argue with me… instead my goal should be to teach them how to form an argument that makes sense and to really go for it. If I want them to be reckless pursuers of dreams… I better model that with my life, too.

As we encounter day-to-day stuff, we start with the end goals in mind and work our way back into daily happenings.

Some challenges to get started

  • Can you articulate with your partner some end goals?
  • Are those goals coherent with your own day-to-day life that you model?
  • What needs to change in your own life so that you are modeling a life that your children will want to emulate?

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