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How to Raise Financially Empowered Kids

Guest Post By: Grant Means, Founder & Author at Start Now Press

First, let’s clear the air: nearly every aspect of raising children seems an impossibly complex challenge – no matter how much love, passion, discipline and reason we bring to the table, outcomes prove frustratingly difficult to predict. On the other hand, effective financial management represents a surprisingly simple path that we often struggle to take. For most of us, the biggest challenges are pesky distortions such as lack of confidence, tough medical issues, paralyzing emotional tug-of-war, well-funded corporate marketing budgets that nudge us to spend beyond our means, and skepticism (sometimes justified) of the financial system*. That said, there is good news!

Self-empowerment is one of the greatest gifts any parent can give their child. Parents are able to easily get ahead of the curve by engaging with their kids on several key financial foundations: instilling self-confidence, effectively managing health risks, modeling emotional grit, engaging on the issue of needs versus wants, and educating them on the nuances of banks and brokers*. Knowledge is power, so if we teach the next generation how to build a more fulfilling life, we can enable them to chart a brighter future for themselves, their communities, their country, and the world.

What You Can Teach

  • Model delayed gratification: the bedrock of financial literacy
    • If we always buy what we want, there will never be financial margin
    • It starts before kids understand money. Self-control is a necessary step
  • Instill work ethic through experience: income is our greatest wealth generating tool, so career lessons are a wise investment
    • Start now with defined commissions for chores around the house. Later on, consider dialing back an extracurricular and adding a part-time job
      • Incentivize budgeting
      • Push for a job that involves teamwork or serving people
      • Discuss how time is money – hours of work become dollars.
    • Money management cannot happen without income
  • Equip youngsters with questions to ask and tools to find: “teach a man to fish…”
    • Most of us don’t know the right questions to ask, so finding the answer that’s right for us proves challenging. Any lessons you have learned are ahead start for your kids – teach them what you know, be upfront about what you do not know, and keep them curious!
      • As data access continues to grow, we need to nurture kids’ quality control filters. Not all information is created equal.

How You Can Teach

  • Communicate openly: a trusting rapport is vital to intellectual progress.
    • Many say that silence is complicity. We battle ignorance when we tell stories, explicitly impart lessons, and engage in healthy dialogue
    • You reap what you sow – if you cultivate upfront, vulnerable, and reasonable conversations from the beginning, your kids are more likely to seek your advice when it matters most
  • Solicit questions: help cultivate your child’s curiosity
    • Ask them what good questions they asked each day
    • Encourage them to ask when they don’t know
    • Show them how to ask a deeper question for more information, even when they think they understand
  • Make it tangible: engage more senses to help the point stick.
    • Set an example. Teach them, “Do as I say… and as I do”
    • Use props, especially three money jars that say, “give, save, & live”
    • Read, watch, or listen to credible financial sources

Start Now Press

At Start Now Press, we strive to distill seemingly complex issues into simple, tangible, and actionable principles. We tirelessly read, think, write, and debate in order to improve our content and infuse meaning into each sentence. Guided by our mission, “to plant seeds of knowledge that blossom into a more fulfilling life for every reader,” we are excited to bring our children’s books to life through supplemental content that helps adults apply our lessons as they raise their kids.

We believe that, whether you write a rule, provide an incentive, or impart enlightening information, there are a few simple and empowering principles that can make a world of difference in your child’s life. Above, we’ve highlighted six principles that serve as powerful tools to cut through fear-inducing complexity on our quest to empower the next generation. For more information on our mission or to take a look at our children’s books, visit us online at: https://www.startnowpress.com/.

Financial education is key to a fulfilling life. Teaching kids these lessons early on not only prepares them for the future, but ensures they are building the Wealthy Habits that will last a lifetime. Until next time, remember our motto: The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.  Start Now!

 

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