Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips, and supple knees; it is a matter of the will, quality of the imagination, a vigour of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep springs of life – Samuel Ullman.
And all of us know that it’s difficult to change and mould this state of mind. It’s not hard, though, but requires a smart move especially if the topic is related to money.Believe me when I say – “Teens are interested in money matters.” Of course, they are interested in spending, but the youth of today is also interested in knowing a lot of about budging, saving, and investing. Teens look at learning about money as something that symbolises maturity and independence. They take these lessons as their primary steps towards becoming dependable and responsible adults.
With so many practical examples around me, I have come up with a few points that will help a number of parents while discussing money with their teenage children. Use these tips to make your child financially savvy.
1.Don’t put them down: Teenage is the extremely sensitive phase of life, and the rule of thumb when discussing money matters with your child is to respect their point of view, as well. Don’t put them down, and treat them with respect. Also, do not get frustrated when they are not able to understand or agree on a few points.
2.Encourage them to ask questions: Encourage your teenage child to ask questions. It is crucial that you understand these questions and answer them with patience. You will be amused to know how insightful their queries are; in fact, a few of them will trigger your thinking process, as well. It probably will be a learning for you while you are trying to teach your children.
3.Ensure that the tone of your conversation is light and polite: Keep calm when you discuss money matters with your child. Apart from this, you need to understand that everything related to money, savings, investment, etc. cannot be explained in one seating. Also, make sure that you are not very fussy, and nitty-gritty. For instance, you cannot ask your teen to go through all the fine print of a loan application while teaching him/her about the same. Understand that there is a right time for everything.
4.Talk about the subject of money while you are in a relaxed mood: I personally feel that the best time to talk to your teen about money or budgeting is while you are on a calm walk with him/her. They open up when they are in a carefree state and that’s when you will be able to put your point forward and clear his/her doubts about the same. Don’t just sit on the dining table and say – “Ok, let’s discuss budgeting today.” This will do no good to you.
5.Ensure that your child feels relaxed when it comes to taking financial advice from you: Make sure that your teen knows that he/she can always talk to you about money. Encourage them so that they share their problems with you, and depend on your guidance when needed.
6.Stop judging your teen: Don’t come up with past disagreements, arguments, mistakes etc. while you are in a teaching and learning environment. This will force your teen to lose his/her willingness to learn. Shop digging the dirt from the past. Your child will himself highlight his mistake, and learn from the same. If this happens, then you are going on the right track.
7.Encourage your teen to be a part of the household budget: By this, I certainly don’t mean that parents should discuss all their finances with their teen, but you can certainly encourage them to assist you in a few areas.