Mum and Dad, your kids need you to teach them about money
Why does no one teach this stuff?
This is the comment I hear from every second coaching client I have ever worked with. The principles of smart money management are so simple, yet here in Australia, 1 in 2 people aged 18- 35 experience financial stress of some kind on a weekly basis….
Yes, you heard it right – 1 in 2 people experience financial stress on a weekly basis.
We live in one of the wealthiest countries on earth, yet our younger generations are failing to thrive, financially weighed down by unrealistic lifestyle expectations and consumer debt.
But the biggest problem is lack of practical education…
As of this month, my 3 beautiful kids are now all teenagers! And yes, I am going both bald and grey – but that’s another story!
Both my girls have had lessons on basic budgeting in year 9 maths and commerce but to them it was just another topic to be learned, like calculus or trigonometry. Without any practical real-life application, these lessons were useless.
Money management skills need to be ‘lived’ not simply taught in a classroom.
So, parents, like it or not, it is up to you and I to teach our children the money skills they need to thrive as adults. It is our responsibility an no one else’s … Scary huh!
Even scarier is the fact that they are already learning from you, oh yes, they are watching you like a hawk and in the absence of purposeful education they will just copy you.
So – think for a minute – what lessons do you think you are subconsciously teaching your children right now?
Do you give them money every day to buy their lunches and go out with their friends?
Do all your purchases go on the credit card?
Do they ask for (and receive) expensive presents every birthday and Christmas?
Do you eat out or get takeaway a lot?
Do you pay for them to have their hair coloured and styled?
Do you buy them designer clothes?
Now please understand, I am not asking these questions to make you feel bad; as parents we love to be generous to our kids – but what I want you to think about is…
What are the lessons and lifestyle expectations that come from these actions?
Do you think your children will be able to afford to buy lunch and coffees every day, eat out regularly, give extravagant presents, get their hair coloured and styled and buy designer clothes when they first start working?
No, of course not, yet that is the lifestyle they have grown accustomed to and unless you teach them otherwise, they will almost certainly drive themselves into the financial ditch trying to maintain that lifestyle when they are left to their own devices.
As a budget coach, I see young couples and individuals every week who seemingly have it all, and yet they have nothing. They are up to their eyeballs in debt and struggling to keep their head above water.
No one taught them about the dangers of credit cards; they just did what their parents did and put everything on the credit card.
As I work with them and take them through my 6-step road map to financial peace I inevitably hear that same question – “why does no one teach this stuff?”
I don’t have the heart to tell them they should take it up with their parents!
One of the most satisfying aspects of being a budget coach is helping my clients pass on what they have learnt to their children.
Teaching your children about money does not have to be scary or difficult.
So, let me ask you Mum and Dad, now that you understand that it is your responsibility to teach your cherubs about money, what steps are you going to take to make sure it happens?
Okay – so it can be a little hard to get started.
If teaching your kids about money is a scary proposition, then can I encourage you to click on the link below and register your interest in attending one of our Free ‘Money Smart Kids’ Live Webinars.
We would be thrilled to help you turn your kids into strong confident money managers, and maybe, just maybe, you will learn a thing or two along the way