• Steve Martin

* Nine things to teach your kids

I found the following article written by Paul Merriman very useful.

Let’s face it: As parents we know we have learned lots of important lessons, and we wish our kids would pay attention when we try to impart those lessons. And let’s face it: Our kids usually hear what they want to hear and ignore what they want to ignore. (Most of us did the same thing when we were young, but let’s keep that just between us for now.)

Occasionally we parents have a window of opportunity when, for reasons that are sometimes hard to fathom, our kids are in a receptive mood and actually pay attention. When we can, I think we should take full advantage of those opportunities to teach the things that are likely to make a big difference.

Basic lessons for younger children include the concept of saving and the notion (even some grownups never seem to get this right) that you can only spend a single dollar once, so you should choose carefully.

For purposes of this article, I’ll focus on how to instill good investing habits and attitudes in young people who are just getting started with careers and savings. Here are nine lessons I’d love to see them learn.

First: Start saving now. Even if all you have is $50, start. Many potential fortunes have been lost because people waited. Time is the biggest asset that young people have. Time to add to their savings. Time to let those savings grow and compound. A 1,000-mile journey starts with a single step, as you’ve probably heard more times than you can count. One reason you’ve heard it over and over is that this is one of the ways the world really works.

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