Style My Soul Explores …
“What are the best money management tips that you were taught during your childhood?
How has it impacted your life?”
Do Not Spend Before You Have Earned
From an early age, one specific money management tip that stood out to me was “Don’t spend before you have earned.” This has been a life-changing lesson for me, as it has allowed me to become mindful of my financial decisions over time. As a result, I have often taken the time to think about purchases before spending and have been able to save up for larger expenses. Not only have I seen the benefit of this in my personal finances, but in my life overall, as it has given me a sense of security knowing that I am prepared should any unexpected costs come up. - Antreas Koutis, Administrative Manager, Financer
Avoid Credit Card Debt at All Cost
I was taught never to have credit card debt. This has certainly helped me to avoid consumer debt, as I always pay off my credit card each month. That said, I’ve expanded my view of “debt” and have opened up new credit cards with large sign-on bonuses and 0% APR for the first year. I used the time to invest more heavily in the market and paid off the credit card once the year was up and interest would be owed. Overall, I still avoid unnecessary debt, but I think there can certainly be moments when credit card debt is not the end of the world and can actually prove beneficial to your financial goals. - Kristine Thorndyke, Founder, Test Prep Nerds
Place a Money Jar on the Fireplace
My father gave us an allowance at the beginning of each week in a jar on the fireplace. As we got older, he started giving us more money with more responsibility. We started with an allowance for good grades. That progressed to increasing the allowance for school supplies, school clothes, school field trips, and movie theater tickets. If I wanted something designer, I would save up for it over time. I liked having money in my pocket. I learned I did not need immediate gratification. There were also fees for negative behavior. Each child had a list of things to work on in their Mason jar. Each infraction had a fee that would be taken from your initial allowance and placed in the Mason jar. Arguing with siblings had a fee. Lying had a fee, back talking to parents had a fee, etc. The kids in the neighborhood would come over to see how our money was moving in and out of the jar. I learned what happens when I make good choices and what happens when I make bad ones. I have great credit!
- Beth Smith, Life Coach and Owner, Thriving With Resilience
Pay Bills on Time to Avoid Debt
My parents always emphasized the importance of paying bills on time. Back then, I didn’t fully understand the impact that this lesson would have on my life. As I got older and began managing my finances, I quickly realized how important it is to stay on top of bills and payments. Paying bills on time keeps you from falling behind and accumulating late fees, which can add up quickly and strain your finances. Not only that, but consistently staying on top of bills helps to build a good credit score, which is essential for things like applying for a loan, renting an apartment, or even getting a job. So, I make it a point always to pay my bills on time and keep a close eye on my finances. It’s a simple but powerful money management tip that has helped me avoid debt and build a stable financial foundation. - Gary Gray, CFO, CouponChief.com
Convert Your Purchases to Work Hours Needed
While not a tip I was taught, there’s a way of money management that I’ve developed very early in my childhood. I’d lived through two wars by the time I was 18, and even with my parents’ best efforts, there were a lot of things that were off-limits for us as a family. It is very likely that this led to me placing great importance on money management later on in life. When I got my first job, and ever since then, I started measuring every single potential purchase in my hourly or weekly or even monthly pay. I would ask myself if a piece of clothing is really worth 10 hours of my work-time, if that piece of jewelry we traditionally buy when getting engaged is really worth two of my monthly salaries, and so on. Evaluating a purchase from this perspective helps me decide if it is truly worth parting with the hard-earned money and eliminates impulse buys. - Nikola Rudic, Director, Supreme Grubs
Learn Delayed Gratification
My parents taught me the concept of delaying gratification as I was growing up. They instilled in me the value of waiting to buy the things I desired and conserving money instead of acting on impulse. This lesson has stayed with me all my life and has aided in my ability to make wise financial choices as an adult. Every time I have to make a financial choice, I step back and consider if I actually need it or if it’s just a passing fancy. I’ve been able to avoid making unnecessary purchases and make better investments for the future by delaying and saving for the things that are really important. - Percy Grunwald, Co-founder, Compare Banks
One thing I learned growing up is to have a profound respect for money. I remember every time I went to the mall with my dad, I would always ask for this or that. My dad would say “No” literally all the time. But after a few weeks, he would actually buy some of these things for me. He told me that, just because you have money does not always mean you have to spend it. Money is not vanity. You work hard to get it, and as such, you should spend on things that are actually more important. If you cannot respect the value of money and the hustle that it takes to get it, then it will be very hard to attain some level of financial freedom. I have taken this lesson with me to this day. It has helped me avoid wastage, live within my means, and spend only on things that I care about.
- Young Pham, Founder and Project Manager, Biz Report
Always Pay Yourself First
I was blessed to have learned the valuable lesson “always pay yourself first” during my younger years. In my parents’ eyes, this means setting aside a portion of what I make doing household chores and profits from my neighborhood side hustles for savings and investments before making any other expenditures. Although I didn’t grasp the importance of savings and investments when I was little, this simple yet essential lesson has profoundly affected my life and livelihood in the long run. By emphasizing savings, I have established a solid financial foundation and weathered difficult times, including the recent economic challenges caused by the pandemic. The applicability of this piece of advice has never been greater than it is right now. Considering all the unpredictability that exists in the world today, it is necessary to have a reliable investment strategy. Remember that paying yourself first is not just a good concept, but a crucial step in achieving your financial objectives. - Vladimir Fomenko, Founder and CEO, Infatica.io
Save Portions of Gifts or Allowance
One money management tip that I was taught during my childhood is to save a portion of my allowance or any money I received as a gift. This habit has helped me to be more financially responsible and develop a healthy relationship with money. It has also allowed me to build up savings for unexpected expenses or future investments. - Ammar Bangee, Banking, Banking and Finance
Keep a Budget
One money management tip that my parents instilled in me during my childhood was to always keep track of my expenses and budget accordingly. They encouraged me to make a list of all my monthly expenses, such as rent, groceries, and bills, and then allocate a certain amount of money toward each category. This tip has had a significant impact on my life as it has helped me stay on top of my finances and avoid overspending. By keeping track of my expenses and sticking to a budget, I’ve been able to save money for emergencies and even for fun activities like vacations or hobbies. It’s a habit that I still practice today and one that I’m grateful my parents taught me. - Manav Mathur, Editor, Favouritetable
Pay Cash for Your Purchases
My Dad always said, “Never finance anything besides a home and maybe a car. Always save your money and pay cash.” My dear Dad is 92 and doesn’t have to worry about paying his bills, and he can basically purchase whatever he wants or needs. My husband and I have lived by my Dad’s advice. Now we are retired and never have to worry about our finances.
- Kathy Owen, Owner Blogger, Petticoat Junktion