Raise Those Expectations!

Most parents, in the Old School Model (check out the WealthQuest for Teens’ Parent Guide for details), think their teen has done something amazing if they make a donation to a charity or save for a really big purchase or put away some money for the future. Each of these actions is valuable and important for your teen’s experience with money, but what parents don’t realize is that their teens are capable of a FAR more sophisticated money management system.

Teens need to learn how to do these things AT THE SAME TIME. That’s what isn’t learned in the Old School Model. Then what happens is that teens become adults who can’t pay their bills, save for big purchases, grow their investments, and have some fun, too.

The Silo System is the perfect training ground for teens to get the hang of coordinating all of this at the same time.

These are the main elements of the Silo System, which teens can learn about in the WealthQuest for Teens online video/workbook seminar.

  1. Necessities
  2. Play money
  3. Big ticket items
  4. Future financial freedom
  5. Education
  6. Contributions to make the world better for all of us

Consider the benefit of having your teen establish this habit BEFORE he becomes an adult. Wouldn’t that be the best way to prepare her for adulthood?

During the past 25 years that I have been teaching in the public school system, I can tell you without a single doubt, that having high expectations for young people to challenge themselves to accomplish is one of the greatest gifts you can offer the teens in your life.


Easy Action:  Begin a money journal with your teen.  Teach your teen to figure out his or her current net worth.  Then, set a goal for updating this document routinely (Weekly?  Monthly?  What works for you?) and create a reminder system.

Resource at Your Fingertips:   Check out this article from TheMint.org about teens and tracking your net worth.


Remember to Pledge to teach your teen to be an excellent money manager!  Vote “Yes. I will make the promise!” to let the world know that parents are doing their part to build a financially literate society!

© Your Teen’s Money Skills, Inc., 2012 All rights reserved worldwide.

Is Money in Your Teen’s “Circle of No Control”?

Sean Covey, in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, advises readers to identify those aspects of life that they can control and those that they can’t control.  When teens are learning how money works and how to manage their money effectively, they move this area of life out of their “Circle of No Control” into their “Circle of Control”. 

When you consider how profoundly and pervasively money affects our lives, you can see the radical difference this education and training makes for them.  This is a shift that impacts them now AND for the rest of their lives.

Do you think that your teen’s money habits currently fall under the “Circle of No Control”?  If they lie in the “Circle of Control”, what did your teen do to achieve this?


Easy Action:  Begin a money journal with your teen.  Teach your teen to figure out his or her current net worth.  Then, set a goal for updating this document routinely (Weekly?  Monthly?  What works for you?) and create a reminder system.

Resource at Your Fingertips:  Check out WealthQuest for Teen’s Online Video Seminar and QuickStart Guide for a fun way for your teen to learn about saving, managing, and growing his or her money!


Remember to Pledge to teach your teen to be an excellent money manager!  Vote “Yes. I will make the promise!” to let the world know that parents are doing their part to build a financially literate society!

© Your Teen’s Money Skills, Inc., 2012 All rights reserved worldwide.

Too Busy to Teach Your Teen Money Skills?

What a great sign!  Busy teens are involved, living life fully, exploring lots of different activities and opportunities.  I hope all busy teens grow into busy adults.

As a busy adult, how do you find time to fortify yourself, your foundation, so you have the energy to enjoy your pursuits?  I am finding that, if I don’t pay attention to the fundamentals, like nutrition, sleep, money, being quiet for some part of each day, I feel drained, worried, and depleted.  I start to say things like, “I need a vacation.  I need to get away.  I need some time for myself.”

When I consistently eat well, get enough sleep, organize my time, and manage my money, I enjoy my life much more!  It actually works better than going away on an expensive vacation and coming back to the daily grind with tons of catching up to do. Vacations are more enjoyable when I am tending to my foundation.

Let’s be sure to teach our teens how to have a solid foundation so they can love their lives!


Easy Action:  Talk to your teen about setting a specific financial life goal.  For example, “By X (age) I will have X (net worth) so I can _________ (benefit that is meaningful to your teen).”  Like all areas of life, we first set meaningful goals, then our journey becomes the discovery of how to achieve our goals.

Resource at Your Fingertips:  Get resources for YOU and YOUR TEEN at www.wealthquestforteens.com


Remember to Pledge to teach your teen to be an excellent money manager!  Let the world know that parents are doing their part to build a financially literate society!

© Your Teen’s Money Skills, Inc., 2012 All rights reserved worldwide.

Your Teen’s Habits with Money Have Everything to Do with How They Think about Money

When I was young, I had very specific beliefs about money:

  • I really and truly believed that wealthy people were shallow and not very smart. (My parents were academics, so you can see how I arrived at that conclusion.)
  • I also believed that money was a pain. I never had enough, and whenever I wanted any, I had to argue with my parents. I usually lost that argument. (You can see how I arrived at that conclusion, too.)
  • I thought it would be fine if I never learned to manage money, because I fully expected to marry a man who would take care of that area of our lives. (My step-father was in charge of the money in my home, so you can see how I arrived at that conclusion, too!)
  • I was jealous of my friends who had more spending money (in spite of #1), because they got to have things and do things that I didn’t get to have and do. I believed that money was something “other people had, not me”. (My parents often said “We cant’ afford that”, so you can see how that thought got hatched in my young brain!)
  • I thought there were only two things I could do with money: save it or spend it. I got an allowance, which I immediately spent on who-knows-what, and my sister always saved her allowance. She would save and save and then buy herself a beautiful sweater. (My parents gave us an allowance, but never taught us money management strategies, so I never knew how to save, spend, give, and donate in managed ways.)
  • I thought rich people gave to causes that mattered, and people like me just “walked” and “sold stuff” to raise money. I never thought of myself as a person who could use my money to make a difference in the world in ways that mattered to me. (That’s what I saw people doing, so I figured that applied to me, too.)
  • I never thought I needed to manage my money, because I hardly had any. And no one told me anything different.

Long story short, I brought these beliefs about myself, people, and money into my adult financial life. From these beliefs, I became a teacher with a disastrous financial life. . . until I learned to think and believe differently.

If you consider the messages your teenager has received from you, by what you say and do with regards to them and money, how do you predict YOUR teen will fare?

Here is a basic list of the beliefs you can instill in your teen that will form a solid foundation for a healthy financial life, regardless of how much money they have now.

  1. Managing money well MAKES it grow. Not having much money is the BEST reason you can find to manage it well.
  2. Wealth is the result of a series of small steps, taken repeatedly over time. Anyone can take these steps and have this result.
  3. Money is a tool that funds the life of your dreams, allows you to have options, and empowers you to make a difference in the world as a leader.
  4. Managing your money takes energy and time. Being broke is truly and deeply exhausting, though. Your choice.
  5. Wealthy people make money important. Broke people say, “Money isn’t important. It can wait. It’s too much of a pain. I will let someone else take care of it.”
  6. Money doesn’t MAKE you shallow or greedy. People show who they already are by the way they use and manage their money.
  7. Money and money management is NOT hard or complicated. Learn a simple money management system that is clearly related to your life, your dreams, your goals, and your values. Practice it when you’re young and then keep using it when you become an adult.

One tool you can use to make money matter to your teen is the WealthQuest for Teens Online Video and Workbook. It’s narrated by and for teens, engaging, interactive, convenient, affordable, and effective.

Note: This post is one of five in our series, Our Comprehensive Approach. You can see the others by clicking Learn, Give, Practice, and Talk.


Resource at Your Fingertips:  Check out WealthQuest for Teen’s Online Video Seminar and QuickStart Guide for a fun way for your teen to learn about saving, managing, and growing his or her money!


Remember to Pledge to teach your teen to be an excellent money manager!  Vote “Yes. I will make the promise!” to let the world know that parents are doing their part to build a financially literate society!

© Your Teen’s Money Skills, Inc., 2013 All rights reserved worldwide.

Top 10 Most Important Things Parents Can Do to Raise Teens with Great Money Skills

  1. Have your teen set a financial freedom goal that sounds something like, “I will have $X by age X that will allow me to be completely financially free so I can have _________, be ______________, do _____________, and help _____________ without financial worries or constraints.”
  2. Teach your teen the habit of tracking his/her money. Use Mint.com or an Excel spreadsheet or a handwritten journal. Set a schedule for updating all assets and liabilities and follow it.
  3. Support your teen to experience and explore opportunities to learn about money online, in books, and in programs. Check out WealthQuest for Teens’ online video/workbook program that is narrated by and for teens.
  4. Teach your teen to manage his or her money so that spending, saving, investing, donating, and earning are coordinated to happen at the same time.
  5. Teach your teen positive, healthy ideas about money that are not rooted in fear or myth. For example, “money allows people to express who they are; it doesn’t make them a particular way or change them.”
  6. Talk to your teen about your finances. Make money an interesting conversation topic.
  7. Make sure your teen is accountable for his or her money. Your teen should have financial responsibilities and experience natural consequences for poor money management.
  8. Make sure your teen has at least one active bank account that has a meaningful role in his or her life.
  9. Have your teen routinely give 10% of all the money he or she receives to a cause he or she cares about. Check out www.dosomething.org for opportunities and ideas.
  10. Encourage your teen to earn money in creative and productive ways.

Easy Action:  Teach your teen a great money management system that is age-appropriate. 

Resource at Your Fingertips:  WealthQuest for Teens’ Silo System teaches a system that works great for teens now AND for the rest of their lives.


Remember to Pledge to teach your teen to be an excellent money manager!  Let the world know that parents are doing their part to build a financially literate society!

© Your Teen’s Money Skills, Inc., 2013.  All rights reserved worldwide.