Words of Candor

Do you have family meetings in your house? Dedicated time each week or month to discuss events, changes, or money? My parents sat my sister and me down regularly for family meetings, even discussing finances with us. Admittedly, I remember my own loathing during these meetings, wishing I was somewhere else, but as an adult I recognize how influential those meetings were on my own relationship with money.
At nearly four years old, my daughter is a bit young for assigned chores that will earn her money, but when the time comes, my wife and I plan to give her an opportunity to do just that.
Years ago I wrote an article about making “cents” for your child’s future (catchy, I know) in an effort to provide practical tips on how to talk with your kids about money and budgeting. Back then though, I didn’t actually have kids. Now, two children later, I’m gaining much more insight into how to introduce these topics in our household.
We are all guilty of comparing ourselves to others, and it’s especially easy to do so based on how we share our lives through social media. A quick scroll on your phone will convince you everyone you know is happy, prosperous, and confident. But is that reality? The truth is, we all have our own internal struggles, and we are all trying to do the best we can in our own circumstances.
Imagine summiting Mount Everest, and how much would be required of you to make that happen. Verne Harnish, who wrote Scaling Up, said, “Those who do it create a plan. Prepared with a set of rules and a passion for the journey, along the way, they aim for a series of camps or stop points. Then it’s a matter of focusing on the next day and, more important, the first and subsequent steps, making adjustments along the way as the mountain conditions dictate. Those who have made this personal journey suggest that it’s ultimately about staying acutely aware as you push to take just one more calculated step.”
Bill Gates once said, “most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.” How true is that? So many of us set goals each January for what we want to achieve in a year, and often find ourselves off track a few months later. I know this has been a year full of countless surprises, causing many of us to veer off the course we initially set out on. Still, you have the power to take control of the rest of the year.