When is the right time to start telling children about money?
Because I’m constantly thinking that I came to the conversation quite late.
Like an active participation. Because I don’t think you can make it beyond five years with no idea of money and how well it smooths life over.
And at this age, it’s also a little late to keep blaming an upbringing especially when there are plenty of avenues to remedy that.
But money is a hard conversation – to start, to sustain, to finish… Unless you practice it. Like honestly is that conversation ever done. And people don’t usually want you in their money business. There’s so much weight, status and security that we attach to money that we think we are judging and being judged based on our bank accounts. So we enjoy that mystery where we let people make that assumption.
You know – the kind of assumptions…and reactions when your friend tells you what they are doing and how they are earning extra income or they are in a bad financial fix. We treat it like the elephant that it is, sidestepping it rather than rallying together to bring it down (do not use this as your permission to poach elephants, please).
And yet you could ask, get it out there, ask how they do it. What books they are reading and what information you can trade. What investments have worked for them (not that you will do the same, we all have different interests and strengths) but it would be nice to know how to go about it. What challenges you could prepare for or what knowledge is an absolute take-home.
Yet I still can’t help but wonder, like I’m sure some people do, if all this couldn’t have started earlier.
To have known those little things that you accumulate with age like on saving and investing and streams of income and retirement and insurance and minimalism (or essentialism if you prefer) and generosity. Clearly there is so much to money and once you are out of school, you spend most of life trying to get that paper to work in your favour; dedicating a third of your day or more to maintain that fleeting commodity.
It’s a wonder why you don’t have more lessons on it before you have it like almost everything else.
Like your money boundaries.
And what you could be willing to do or how far you’d go.
And how to think outside the box to achieve that business model or tech startup that you envy.
While every other conversation matures, the one on money never does because it’s that kid that is dressed up for presenting before the visitors and then locked up in the closet under the stairs. Out of sight, out of mind, right? (does that really work where money is concerned) Till the next visitor comes asking, ‘Oh, I thought you had a child in this house.’ When said child shows up, they are driven straight to the next hangout area and we drive back home with a dizzy child and a terrible feeling of how we can’t quite get a handle on them – it. Money. You get it.
Well, we’ll be having all those conversations and then some in the Business and Tech week of the Afrobloggers Challenge. On work and fun – because you need to be a well rounded person. Day 10 already!