Thursday, March 29, 2007

The "R" Word

Recently, I was talking to a colleague about her grandson who is the same age as my daughter, 2-1/2 years old. He is a very bright child, who already has conversations with adults. One day he was telling his parents that he didn't want to turn three. He explained that he didn't want the responsibility that came with being three. His parents had shared with him the new expectations of a three year old. He said that it was much more fun being two, without the added responsibility.

My colleague and I had a good laugh, both about the comment and the insight. Already, a three year old thought he had too much responsibility. The insight was that taking on responsibility is an important skill that needs to be learned. Some learn the skill of responsibility early, others take a lifetime to learn, and some never learn it.

It caused me to think about areas of responsibility for personal finance. Here are the My Wealth Builder areas of Personal Finance Responsibility:
  1. I am responsible to understand financial principles. I need to understand the concepts of insurance, investment returns, savings and emergency funds, and use these concepts to create financial security for my family. I hire experts when needed, but make the ultimate decision.

  2. I am responsible to create financial security. I cannot depend on company pensions or Social Security for my retirement. I can't even count on working long enough for one company for my entire career to get any retirement benefits. I need to develop a plan that enable me to cover my family financially today and in the future.

  3. I am responsible for my financial situation. Credit cards, mortgage lenders, banks, financial advisers and others are available to serve me. If I use them correctly, I will become wealthy. If I use them incorrectly or let them decide for me, they could destroy my wealth.
We get many new responsibilities as we get older. Although it for a time much older than three, I hope to teach my daughter well about financial responsibility.

For more on Crossing Generations , check back every Thursday for a new segment.

Photo Credit:, Darren Hester

This is not financial advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

Copyright © 2007 Achievement Catalyst, LLC

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