I had the pleasure of being a guest on the Dr. Phil show, which aired yesterday. Below are a few of the tips for parents which I shared with the audience and is currently posted on the show’s site. Click here if you would like to see a brief transcript of that show. Let me know what you think about this show or if you have a story to share that may help others in the same type of situations as the families featured.

  1. Put Skin in the Game
    It’s important to give children hands-on interaction with money from a young age. Let them earn it, spend it, save it, donate it and invest it, so they can learn to respect money. All day long, children will be able to spend your money, but there’s a very special thing that happens when they have their money in their hands. Children will think twice about spending their own cash.
  2. Look in the Mirror
    Parents need to see what kind of role model they are when it comes to spending money. The most impactful teacher in a child’s life is going to be Mom and Dad. If you want to know how your children are going to act with money, you have to take a good look at yourself. If your finances are organized, teach your children a similar system. If your money is a mess, get your finances in order.
  3. Find Money Mentors
    Children are inclined to listen to another adult, like a grandparent or other family member, more than their own parents. When I was growing up, my grandmother lived upstairs from me, and I learned a lot from our relationship. Everything she said, even if it was identical to my parents, it just sounded better.
  4. Teach Children Good Things Come to Those Who Wait
    In a world of instant gratification, teaching children to wait can be difficult. But when kids ask for things, it’s a parent’s job to say no. Help your children plan for what they need and want. Parents need to establish times when their children will receive money, like holidays and birthdays. The more time in between their cash gifts, the more successful they’ll be at delaying their gratification.
  5. Help Children Understand Tough Economic Times
    If your family is suffering through a challenging time financially, it’s important to have a family meeting to discuss expenses in the family. Writing down the wants and needs and making a priority list will help children see a new perspective. Realize that saying no to your children is much more difficult for you to do than for your child.
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Written by Susan Beacham
Susan Beacham founded Money Savvy Generation in 1999 after almost two decades in private banking and investment management complemented by considerable time teaching at the elementary level.

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