Helping Your Children Avoid A Materialistic Lifestyle
In these recent economic times, an increasing number of parents are feeling compelled to teach their children the importance of not being dictated by a materialistic lifestyle. One of the best ways to foster this belief is to stress the importance of managing money from an early age. Particularly in the United States, your children will constantly receive messages from friends and the media that it’s okay to “buy now, and pay later” while avoiding the value in saving up for an item and only purchasing it when funds are available.
You can help your children appreciate the value of money and sticking to a budget by giving them a periodic allowance in exchange for doing small chores around the house. Start with a small amount, and then consider increasing it if your child shows a long term commitment to finishing the chores to satisfaction. The benefit of starting with a small amount and increasing it later is because your child will be gently forced to save up for items that cost more than their allowance provides. This not only starts to instill a consciousness about the need to save for more expensive items instead of simply buying them on credit, but it will also help your child to learn to think carefully about whether they really need to spend money on an item, or if they should wait to make sure that it’s something they really need to own.
Today’s mass culture emphasizes a materialistic lifestyle, but the use of an allowance will not only help your children to understand that money is something that must be earned, but also help them avoid the temptation of impulse purchases, which could ultimately help them to avoid debt problems later in life.
Managing The Financial Obligations Of A Middle Class Lifestyle
In these uncertain economic times, your financial situation can be one of the most stressful aspects of your life, especially if you consider yourself to be part of the middle class. Although you may not qualiify for some of the benefits that are given to people who are in a lower income bracket, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you don’t struggle with learning how to juggle your expenses and ensure that your bills are paid on time, too.
As a member of the middle class, it’s important to live a lifestyle that focuses on taking care of yourself. Even if you’re feeling nearly stretched to the limit, take a bit of time every day to do something good for yourself. If you’re engaged in an activity that you enjoy, you’ll soon find that any stressful situations are pushed to the back of your mind, for a least a few brief, precious moments. Another reason that you need to make sure to take care of yourself is because you need to keep yourself in good health whenever possible. Many members of the middle class do not have adequate health insurance, or any sort of insurance at all, and without proper coverage, a sudden illness can derail your lifestyle quite severely.
Also, don’t underestimate the importance of setting a budget for yourself. Whether you are prioritizing your expenses on a weekly or monthly basis, it is important to sort out exactly how you spend your money so that you can evaluate if there are any unecessary expenses present. If you do notice that you are spending money on things that you could easily do without, consider the possibility of no longer using your money towards those items. Although this may be hard to accomplish at first, it will likely cut down on your overall stress level.