So, how do we get our money? How do we handle this question? Because that’s surely a question your child will ask you at some point. And this is a great opportunity to talk to them about how people earn money. I grew up poor and because of that my parents always talked to us about how important to manage money properly. Through those experiences and learnings, we got something here for you. So how do you talk to your kids where the money comes from?
Right now, I have a 3-year old kid and at this time he already started to ask for money. We had a classic example, a few months ago we went to the National Bookstore and he started to pick some stuff to buy. He suddenly asked, “Papa, can you buy this for me?”. With hesitation, I asked, do you have a budget? He said, “No but you have a budget”, he said. I was stupified by his answer and could not say anything. Now, I was caught off guard with that question. I started laughing while my wife was looking at me so instinctively. The ending I bought him the stuff that he wanted. That made my day! These are some scenarios that your kids will ask you. Be prepared.
Furthermore, when they started to ask about where the money comes from, its best to give a simple answer. Toddlers, as I have, could not process huge information like God owns everything. They could not process that on their head. Simple answers like, that money comes from that pocket or from my pocket. Now, it would be a different story depending on who asked the question, if you have several kids with different age level. Your answer should differ from their age and their level of understanding but should have the same context.
Meanwhile, when you go to work or do business, you bring in income or salary. That fills up your family financial bucket, and from there we spend for household expenses, which depletes our family budget over time. Then, we need to repeat that process of going back to work, earning money again, to pay for the things that are most important for our family. That where this situation comes in, we need to teach kids about the importance of money. We can also teach them how to save out from their allowance weekly. Give them some strategy that they can try like saving up so they can use the money anytime they need it.
Learn from Other family
Well, another person which I know personally who intentionally teaches their kids about money is the Tan-chi Mendoza family. Its good to have mentor you look up too when it comes to money. They have a lot of examples and I’d like to echo this on this blog. I want you to directly read some of their example from their blog here.
Along with this, the reality is our kids are under a lot of pressure. They’ll sometimes go to school and realize they don’t have certain things that their peers have. They might ask you questions like, are we poor, or are we rich, or are we just somewhere in between? And this is a great opportunity to talk to them about what money means. How much to have, and how much we need, and most importantly, what is it that really defines us?
Does it really matter if we’re rich or poor? Or are we able to cover the expenses that we most need to take care as a family? Besides, money I believe shouldn’t define us. The earlier we teach this message to our children, the more confident they will have in their self-awareness. You do not want them to ask this question outside your home.
Self worth – Not all about money
Also, this is a great opportunity to teach your kids about a heavier topic which is self-worth. About the importance of valuing experiences growing up, your time together with your family. Living with the people that they love, over material things.
If you can teach them that, then they will feel whole without having to buy that next new gadget. Their jewelry, that new pair of shoes, or that new toy. We change their mindset about money. Whatever we bring today they will take it along with them as they grow up. Put emphasis on your time together, experiences together, and that will give them a great sense of worth.
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Hi, my name is Jack Marbida, I am a financial advisor from Sun Life Financial for over 4 years now. My goal is to help thousands of Filipino people understand and embrace the spirit of financial preparation through our program, “Financial Freedom”. I know you need help but you just don’t know where to start. Allow me to help you establish a brighter future. Click here for more information. Check what I have been doing here.