Listen Now to the Sylvia Global Wealth Psychology show about how affluent parents can raise resilient, savvy kids when it comes to money.
This topic was inspired by listeners who called in last week asking for support with their children ranging in age from 17 months to 22 and over. These parents are not alone, as multiple research studies have shown that the number one issue that keeps wealthy parents up at night, regardless of the ages of their children, is what the impact of the wealth will be on their offspring.
To better understand this dilemma, Dr. Jamie Traeger-Muney gives a great analogy that everyone can relate to regarding fluency. Parents who are successful with their money may not be necessarily raising children who understand how to relate well with money, much like if parents speak fluent french but never speak it to their children. And it’s not just about teaching them, as she goes on to explain that if any time the children attempt to speak in French, the parents step in and say it for them, the children have fluent parents, but are completely ignorant of that language themselves and remain dependent on their parents to translate.
If you want your children to make wise choices with their money, then a great place to start is by looking at how your actions and your words are showing as well as teaching them. You may also want to check and see where your actions and values may not be in alignment – research shows that children will learn and be shaped by what they see you doing much more so than by what you tell them to do. They are always watching for when you are being inconsistent or hypocritical – know that you are teaching them all the time and that you have a tremendous amount of influence.
Highlights you’ll hear on the show include:
How to start educating kids:
- Share/Save/Spend jars and more ways to encourage a healthy relationship with money, individually and as a family.
- Using a family giving jar that everyone contributes to and then weighs in on what to do with when it’s full.
- Saving for family vacations together and planning together – and possibly giving the opportunity to invest and grow the money for even nicer vacations.
- Allowance – tied to age and ability to be responsible, not to “chores”
– All the strategies covered during the show are about giving children the opportunity to learn and make mistakes when the cost of their mistakes are relatively low, and the value of the learning and lessons are very high.
Shifting “chores” to “contributions” – where all family members have a contribution to make to the overall running of the household. In life we all encounter things that need to get done that we may not want to do, and, that when we do them, make our life and the lives of those around us, that much better overall.
Addressing the objections of kids, like: “It’s not fair!” — recognizing and agreeing that life truly isn’t “fair” is part of the equation. The other key ingredient is looking at where you experience privilege and opportunity that others don’t have access to and tapping into a sense of genuine gratitude.
Ways to deal with resistance to taking responsibility — the key concept here is to engage and know that your kids want your attention and your interest in their lives – not so much that you’ll do it all for them (though they will definitely try to get you to!), but more that you’ll help jump start them, and also model for them how you take care of your responsibilities too.
During the show, we also addressed the power of the stories, idioms, and words we use when we speak about money and wealth. We explored the idiom “Sharing the spoils” and looked at how this may have a negative connotation attached to money – where our wealth occurred by dominating or taking something from someone else. Listen for the idioms and phrases in your head and that you hear in your family when it comes to choices around how to spend money, give money, or save money.
We always end our shows with “Take Away’s” to empower our listeners:
- Evocative Question: What one small thing can you shift in your parenting style that will bring your children closer to being more empowered around money and choices?
- Inspiring Invitation: Look and see how you are modeling the kind of behaviors you are wanting to see your children grow to have as their natural way of moving and being with their money and wealth. If you see that your actions aren’t keeping up with your wishes, that’s a great place to start.
- Useful Tools:
- Share/Save/Spend Jars: Create a container with three aspects to it – so that you are effectively showing your children that they can make empowered choices related to where they put their money.
- Books: The Price of Privilege by Levine; Good Kids, Tough Choices by Kidder, Silver Spoon Kids by Gallos and Children of Paradise by Hausner.
- Website: Free Rice — an online game for kids of any age where correct answers earn grains of rice that are given to people who are in need.
For more information about how to minimize the potential negative impact of wealth on your children, how to navigate emotional conversations related to financial and estate planning, or how to feel more competent and at ease with your money and wealth, contact us for an initial consultation.
About Wealth Legacy Group: Principals, Emily Bouchard and Jamie Traeger-Muney, are professionals who specialize in the emotional impact of money on individuals and families. We know that even the healthiest relationships are challenged when money is a factor. And we know that being affluent doesn’t necessarily mean having all the answers. We provide a safe environment to help you manage your emotional assets, clarify personal issues surrounding wealth, and provide guidance to resolve them.
About Sylvia Global: Founded by Gael Sylvia, this multi-media production company is passionate about changing how we think about the wealthy and presenting content that really makes a difference in the lives of listeners and viewers. The focus on Sylvia Global is on facilitating conversations about Women, Philanthropy, Wealth, and Wellness.