Today we sat to revisit our family plan. We have been doing this for the last three years and it has been so interesting to see how it has evolved. I like to think of the family plan as less of a plan and more of a setting of intention or sankalpa as it is referred to in yoga. A plan can feel more associated with action, which is important, but without the intention to drive it, can feel empty of substance.
This morning we sat for a few moments quietly to consider what felt accessible and useful as a broad family intention. After five or so minutes, three things came to mind for me: Connectedness, Healthfulness and Life-long Learning. As they surfaced, I reflected on them more fully and really felt that these were qualities that could in fact guide our family, not only this year, but in the years to come. I shared this with my family and we all equally resonated with them.
As my girls are getting older, feeling connected as a family is even more important. I want to be present for the many changes to come and to savor the moments along the way. And as my girls grow up, this also draws Herb and I into new phases of parenting and new experiences in our own relationship with each other and ourselves. I hope to feed and nurture all of this as much as I can. Nourishing our connectedness as a family will naturally spill over into our sense of connection in community.
Healthfulness covers the full gamut of body, mind health and wholeness. This points me to a daily meditation practice, some form of consistent exercise or yoga and rest. This also includes an attention to eating healthfully, though Sophia, Sonia, Herb and I each have a strong sweet tooth. So, often, this means eating for pure enjoyment’s sake. 🙂
The last one, life-long learning, can be easily glossed over, but I have come to realize it’s importance. As a parent, it can be easy to focus on my children’s growth and learning, but Herb and I are equally on that journey. It doesn’t stop just because we are adults or parents. Sometimes as we get older and stuck in our ways, it can be even more essential. Would I want my children to stop their passion for learning when they become independent adults? Certainly not! I hope it only continues to flourish and if I truly believe that, I want to put that belief into practice for myself.
Each of these three intentions will undoubtedly feed the other two. I am quite excited about being able to distill what we feel is important as a family into three simple ideas. Of course, ideas are only as good as they can be practiced. So each of us is also taking the time to distill these intentions into what they mean for each of us and how we see ourselves working toward them.
I am excited for our family sankapla and the shared journey ahead, and perhaps this will inspire you to create your own.