Frequently, I interact with members about their financial affairs. We talk about loans, savings, investments, and financial principles that, if followed wisely, provide a sense of confidence and security for their future. I listen to their stories and challenges in the context of how they have managed their finances and I wonder... What would happen if we spent more time and effort preparing ourselves and the next generation to better master money, rather than allowing money to "master" us?
We all have family traditions. We say or do things that create memorable experiences and lasting legacies. It's exciting to think we have the power to create traditions teaching and modeling sound financial management. Over my 30+ years in financial services, I've come to understand and appreciate that people with wealth who also have a healthy understanding of wealth stewardship, don't obsess about money. They simply take steps to create a tradition of financial health.
I encourage all members to make a declaration that we start a tradition – one of sound money wisdom and prudent wealth stewardship. Wherever you are, start teaching from this day forward and begin a new family tradition surrounding finances. You don't have to be perfect, nor should you be paralyzed by past mistakes. If I have learned anything from the economic mess of the past six years, it is that we must take steps to better understand and embrace prudent financial principles and practices.
If only our children could understand the truth about money and wealth... It's not about the next lottery ticket, pay raise, or borrowing for everything. Let's help each other and especially our future leaders understand how to: spend wisely, save boldly and give generously. Let's create traditions!
C. Blake Burrell