Hi there gorgeous,
I’ve got a question for you today:
If you have kids in your life, have you thought about what you’re teaching them about spending money?
I’ve thought about it a lot since I had Willow and Mr.G, because there were a whole lot of money blocks I had to clear from my childhood so that I could even TALK to them about money, let alone talk about spending it.
So, whether you have kids or not, I think we can all benefit from how we speak about money, and I’ve got some juicy tips on how to teach the kids in your life about healthy spending habits. And I’ll even give you a free lesson on kids and money from my Money Bootcamp!
Let’s get right into it.
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So, Lucky Bee – do you have kids?
If you do, have a think about what they might have learned about spending money from you.
Did you just cringe?
I know. I actually thought I had my money stuff sorted… then I had kids, and I realized there was a whole new layer to uncover.
So many phrases from my childhood kept popping out of my mouth – things like “money is dirty” and “money doesn’t grow on trees” because I didn’t realize how ingrained they were.
Getting clear on those underlying money blocks is incredibly powerful and creates an amazing opportunity to teach your kids something different to what you learned growing up.
The truth is – most of us grew up with money baggage. There are so many old stories you probably have about money that you don’t even realize until you start telling your kids the same thing.
The great news is that our Lucky Bee community can change things for the next generation, and role model creating the life – for you AND your kids – that you want.
I’ve got three really simple but powerful things you can do to teach your kids about spending money in empowering ways.
Give them a sense of power
When Willow was really little, we went to a farmer’s market every week, and after a while, she’d start asking for things. Now at home, she’d do that toddler thing where she’d take a tiny bite out of each apple and leave them lying around the house.
But one day I gave her a coin and helped her buy an apple she wanted and pay for it herself. And guess what? She ate the whole thing. I was so amazed!
If you give your kids the chance to feel like they’re making choices with money, they get a sense of power or self-esteem from that. Willow ate that whole apple because she bought it herself. She CHOSE to do that, and was happy with her choice.
Of course, she might have been unhappy with her choice, too – but she also would have learned something about herself if that had been the case.
Her money self-esteem grew either way.
You can trial this out, by giving Christmas or birthday money and letting them choose a gift themselves. Or you could let each kid have a “budget” at a restaurant and they can choose what combination of entrée, main and dessert they want to buy.
Let them experience what it feels like to “buy” their own things (even if it’s YOU who is actually bankrolling it).
Encourage a sense of ownership
When you give kids choice in how they spend their money, they develop a sense of their own self as competent with money, and also grow their sense of what they like spending their money on.
Having ownership of their money selves builds great self-esteem for kids, as they practice choosing where their money gets spent.
Even from a young age, you can send them on money assignments. When Willow was two, we’d give her a coin to buy her own marshmallow at the café, so she had practice asking for things.
Which brings me to the next point…
Teach the power of First Class choices early
Here on my blog I talk a LOT about upgrades, and making First-Class choices. The Lucky Bees in my Money Bootcamp do exercises to figure out what their First Class Life looks like, and plan their upgrades in various areas of their lives.
Honestly, a lot of women struggle with it, because they don’t believe that they are allowed to choose. After all, most of us grew up hearing things like “you get what you’re given” or “beggars can’t be choosers”.
We almost feel selfish when we ask for what we really want.
Imagine what a powerful thing that would be to learn early in life!
I give either / or choices. You can have this or that, what would you like? Often they will say “both!” but there’s power in asking your kids to deliberately choose an option, and tell them that they can’t get it wrong (and if they do, you can make it a valuable learning experience rather than a shaming one).
Remember that saying NO can be a First Class choice too.
Many women say they want to be rich, so they can give their kids “everything”. Well, you might be surprised to hear that even though I can afford it, I deliberately say no as a money lesson.
But instead of saying “I don’t have any money.” (Which is not true but is often a go-to excuse.) Or “You can’t always get what you want, you know!” I’ll say something a little less “money block-y” like “I don’t have any coins on me today.” Or “Today we’re just visiting the toys!”
Think about some of your biggest money messages as a kid and resolve to make money light hearted and fun, as well as embedded in some healthy lessons too.
So, Lucky Bee… if you want to explore this topic deeper, I’ve got a free Kids and Money class from my Money Bootcamp to help you out.
Access your free class here: www.LuckyBitch.com/kids
It will take you through some of the lessons I teach in my Bootcamp on how to talk to your kids about money, and how to teach them how much fun it can be.
It’s your time, and you’re ready for the next step!
Miss last week’s post? Read it here: 3 Ways You’re Limiting Your Business Growth