Photo courtesy of jnj.com
by Sheena Robinson
If I asked you what your favorite sport was, what would you say? Many people would say football, basketball, tennis, and the list goes on. However, the number one sport that many of us fail to acknowledge or get started playing is the financial game. The game that keeps so many Americans in bondage year after year because we still haven’t figured out how to win.
After making some of my own financial mistakes directly following high school, I can attest to the financial pain that comes with not knowing how money works. Luckily at the age of 23, I was introduced to some life changing principles that have helped me see life in a different way.
Because of my experience, I began to wonder what life would have been like if I had gotten started sooner. Then it hit me! Just like any other sport you must practice increasing your chances of winning. As a financial parent, it is important that we help our children have the best financial outlook as possible. By following the P.R.A.C.T.I.C.E Method, you can ensure just that.
P- Planning is key. When it comes to how much money your child needs to have a successful financial future, it will depend on their future goals.
R- Repetition matters. The earlier you get your children in the habit of saving a portion of their money and not spending it all increases their chances of doing it when they become an adult.
A – Accountability leads to execution. It is important to keep your children accountable for the choices they make. This will also make them think twice before they spend money on unnecessary items.
C- Conversations Daily. It is important that you keep the lines of communication open between you and your children. You should have an open-door policy where they feel comfortable coming to you with any questions or concerns they may have.
T- Time is a component of the money game. Help your children understand the importance of saving as early as possible. You should allow them to go over their financial statements with you, so they can see how their money is growing over time.
I- Interactive is the name of the game. When it comes to kids, it is important to engage them in upbeat activities such as Monopoly or flash cards that are educational and fun at the same time. It is also a good idea to take advantage of different apps.
C – Career Planning starts early. You should not wait until your children turn 18 before you help them decide on a major in college. They may be looking at the money they can make in the field, but they may not be passionate or know what type of classes are required to get a degree in the field. It is a good idea to have your child take a career test to help you know what direction they should take.
E-Education leads to happiness. The more you teach your child what type of pitfalls to avoid in the financial world the better prepared they will be when they leave home at the age of 18. When children are informed about things such as how interest works and what type of financial products work best, they can make better choices.
The sooner we start to P. R. A.C.T.I.C.E. the financial game with our children the more conditioned they become to handle the obstacles. It is our job as financial parents to do the things necessary to equip our children with the necessary information and skills they need to live the best life possible before they leave home at the age of 18. When we give our children a financial headstart, we set the bar that their financial greatness matters to us.
Sheena Robinson, The Financial Parent Consultant, is a certified financial educator, certified life coach, entrepreneur, empowerment speaker and author of Financial Parenthood: The Keys to Raising a Rich Kid. She is the founder of Diva 4 Wealth LLC, an organization dedicated to helping women become more financially savvy. She is also the founder of Financial Parent Academy, a 501(c)3 organization committed to helping parents and children with financial success. To contact Sheena, you may email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo credit: Anthony Cody
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