Who Is In Your Family’s Village?

family village

Most of us have heard the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child” and it is so true. Periodically, it is a good idea to take inventory of your “village” to see how strong and supportive it is. This is a great time to do that, and to make any necessary adjustments.

Here are three simple tips to help:

Tip # 1: Energy. Of those you spend time with, who contributes to your energy so that you walk away refreshed and feeling supported? Who detracts from it? For your children, who of their friends would you consider to be a positive and healthy influence? Who is not? Have a conversation with your children. Ask them what they like about each friend. What do they dislike? How do they feel when they’re playing? Do they feel powerful, frustrated, anxious or peaceful? It’s a great way to teach children how to create the environment and relationships they want over their lifetime. Questions and conversation get them thinking.

Tip #2: Character. What character traits are important to you? What would you desire to instill in your children? That is reflected in who you associate with. It is also reflected in who your children associate with. Just take a moment and look at what character traits are important to your family. Are you showing up in that way as a friend to your friends? Are your children showing up that way with their friends? Do your friends have that level of character in them? What do you want in your relationships? What kind of village do you want to create around your family? What do you want to provide for others in your village?

Tip #3: Non-Judgment. While we want to teach our children to be discerning, it is also important to teach our children not to be judgmental; it’s good that people are different. There are certain behaviors, people and things we may want in our lives and there are other behaviors, people and things we would prefer not to have. Being able to say no to what doesn’t work for us, while not judging another, is an awesome character trait to instill in your children. This allows them to know and stand up for what they believe in, while honoring another’s choices which may very well be different.

Assessing your village is a simple, quick and helpful exercise to do. It can be done poolside, at the beach, in front of a cozy fire, while children are napping or playing, or during quiet time at night. Most importantly, be sure you take a few minutes to appreciate those in your village who have been there for you. A great friend and a great village are true gifts. If you need assistance in clarifying or adjusting your village, it would be my pleasure to assist with a free 15-minute phone consultation. Simply call 951-240-1407 or email me directly to schedule.

Traci L. Williams is the Founder of A Loving Way to Parent. She is known for her practical and intuitive parenting style and can be reached at 951-240-1407 or

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