We have a family motto….
“Forever and for always, no matter what.”
We didn’t set out to create our family motto – somewhere along the way this one found us. I think it is partially derived from the iconic and tear jerking children’s book, Love You Forever by Robert Munsch.
In that simple story, it follows the love between a mother and a son as he is in infant, a busy toddler, a rebellious teen, and ultimately her caregiver into her elderly years. When my mom read it to me as a kiddo, I was struck by the “forever” nature of the love and knew I experienced that same type of love from my own parents. Unconditional and unwavering love was so critical for me as a child, and something we want to emphasize and underscore with our own children. It has become a rhythmic phrase in our home both on good days and bad.
These words work well when we haven’t been our best selves and need to ask for grace, reaffirm our love, and underscore how much we care.
They work well when someone is happy and elated. We can speak them with a big grin across our faces and delight in our hearts.
These words work well when we have to dig in, persevere, and remember we are committed to getting through the tough stuff as a team – or should I say as the Scaggs Squad.
And, these are such sweet words to use when saying goodnight. An affirmation and promise of what is and what will always be. One of my favorite things is when I start to say these words to one of my children and then they finish my sentence for me. It matters to me that home is their safe place, our family is supportive, and we are committed to locking arms in the joys and the struggles of life. That’s what these words mean to us.
Why does this matter?
A family creed or motto is a way of using words as a secret handshake. It is a phrase that is invitational and affirms each time it is spoken. Your motto is a reminder to the listener that they are part of a special “club” and that space will always be held for them. It also serves as accountability for everyone. If you are going to speak these words you better live in a way that is in direct alignment.
Think about it: If big brands are willing to invest oodles of money into developing a perfect tagline, catch phrase, or brand promise, then why not your family too? After all, your family is arguably the most important team you will ever lead – whether you have children or not. It is your unit of most direct impact and your refuge. It is the group of people in which you are investing the most time, energy, and resources. Set out to lead and support your family with care and intention.
What about you? What’s your motto?
I’m genuinely curious if your family has a motto. If you do, comment below or share it with me over Instagram. And if not, what would it be? What simple statement or words would sum up the approach you take to life alongside each other?
I asked my Instagram friends heard things like:
- “Love you to the Moon and Back! Always have and always will!”
- “‘Todo para la familia’ Translates to ‘Everything for the Family’. A reminder we are never alone, always there for you, and the focus is the family. This extends to my siblings and their kids.
- “I love you lots and lots, forever and ever and only you.”
If you already have a motto, now is a great time to pull back and check yourself on it. Are you really living the words you are claiming? Are there areas that you need to realign and adjust to ensure your actions speak as loudly as your words?
If you don’t yet have one, I encourage you to spend time establishing a motto for your team – whether a family or work group. Consider what you want it to be known for and what type of alignment you want amongst the members. How can you quickly communicate the essence of who you are – on good and bad days. There is value in establishing this shared identity and setting it with intention and care.