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family council ideas

by Shawni

Ideas to Hold a Family Council

I’ve mentioned before how it felt to grow up in a family that held “Family Councils.”

I don’t think most of the time we actually called them that, because they were pretty casual affairs. But we gathered together in our living room, sitting on our itchy, straight-backed sofas, or sometimes around the dinner table and talked. About ideas. About what we had to memorize. About upcoming schedules. We had family prayer. We were together.

And those family-together times made me feel safe.

They made me feel loved.

They made me feel part of something so much bigger than myself.

And although we haven’t been so hot at family councils this summer with everyone going every which-way, I smiled when one of the leaders of our church congregation sent me some family council ideas from our church website recently.

Because I’m so glad that we do try to do those things each Sunday.

I’m so grateful for the discussions that have ensued from them. I’m thankful that our kids have learned our “Family Motto” in them. I’m thankful we can get on the same page together. We can discuss all kinds of things from who is driving where, and when, to what to do about the increasing clutter left all over the kitchen counter.

I wanted to share these ideas because I think family councils are like gold to hold a family together. Such a great opportunity to learn to communicate and show love and to grow together as a family.

And I think that now, more than ever, we need strong families.

But before I share, I want to say two things:

1) In order to make family councils happen, set up a time and place so the family will know what to expect.

Sundays usually work best for us because all the other days have so many moving parts.

2) Involve lots of LOVE.

Our friends do “Hip Hip Hoorays” at the beginnings of their meetings where the mom or dad says one awesome thing each child has done that week. But I think love just filters in naturally when you are together. Especially when you start with a prayer.

We are good at the “Full Family Council” below, but we have some work to do on the other ideas that I love (“executive,” “limited,” and “one-on-one”). And I think those are so important as well.

So here you go:

If you hold family councils, I’d love to hear any good experiences, ideas, thoughts on the matter.

If you are looking for more ideas to instill family togetherness and communication, click these links:

How to Create a Family Motto

The Five-Facet Review

(that one is really an “executive council” with a little more detail)

Holding Personal Interviews with your Kids

(That one is really an example of a “one-on-one” family council…gosh I guess I used to be a lot better at those things! I better get my act in gear!)

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1 comment

Shelly Rawlins June 29, 2021 - 2:25 pm

I grew up with Family Councils each Sunday afternoon. Like you, I felt safe, heard, and as a family we problem-solved so many things and set goals. We knew our boundary lines and it worked. I have tried to have a family council with our boys, but my husband’s ideas of what a family council is, is way different and won’t meet me half way. 34yrs of floundering.

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