Want Your Kids to Be Rich? Teach Them the Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires

It's never too early to start teaching kids about being responsible with money. Yet most parents don't teach their kids much about money at all. It's understandable. After all, how can parents teach their kids about money when most parents struggle with being good with money themselves? But even parents who haven’t been financially successful can teach their children what it really takes to be financially secure, and even wealthy.

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Steve Siebold is the author of the new book Secrets Self-Made Millionaires Teach Their Kids and is himself a self-made multi-millionaire. Over the past 34 years, Siebold has interviewed more than 1,200 of the world’s wealthiest people and watched how the self-made rich taught their children about money — and noticed how drastically different it is from the lessons most kids learn about money. 

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Some of the lessons he has learned are:  

Teach your kids they can be rich: Most people believe that you can only be rich if you were born into the right family, attended the best school or possess uncommon talent. While these advantages certainly help, they are by no means required to be rich. Many self-made millionaires did not come from wealthy families.  Teach your kids that there are opportunities if they work hard and that not everyone who is wealthy was born that way.

Teach them to avoid magical thinking: You know the phrases: “Things always work out for the best.” “Justice always prevails.” “You can do anything you set your mind to.” These are all examples of magical thinking. This type of magical thinking is not how you achieve world-class success. The secret is grounding your thinking in objective reality. Life can be unfair and you may suffer setbacks even if you work hard. While it may not be pleasant to have these types of honest conversations with your kids, these are the conditions in which you have to teach your kids to operate. Your job is to see the world as it is, not as you wish it were, and to teach your kids to do the same.

Teach them they’re not entitled:  No one is entitled to anything. It’s up to you to create your own future. The idea of entitlement seems to be growing in popularity, yet it’s based on the delusion that we are born with certain rights. We’re not. We’re just born. The rest is up to you. Teach your kids the opposite of the entitled mentality, which is self-reliance. 

Teach them to think for themselves: The average person is taught what to think. The millionaire in the making is taught how to think. Your kids will learn many great lessons from well-intentioned and well-educated individuals, but odds are that most of these people won’t know the first thing about acquiring wealth. Teach your kids to think big, reach their own conclusions, and blaze their own trail no matter who may criticize their ambition, doubt their ability, and laugh at their vision.

Teach your kids to raise their expectations: Many psychologists believe that people should lower their expectations so they won’t be disappointed if they fail. They believe people will be happier expecting and settling for less. This is another mass oriented formula for failure. Teach your kids to stop living in fear, and instead, live in a world of possibilities, potential, and opportunity. Let the middle class be satisfied with mediocrity while you reach for the stars. Remember, many of today’s biggest success stories were mocked by doubters at one time. 

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So what do you think about these tips? 

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Want Your Kids to Be Rich? Teach Them the Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires

Jamie is a Beltway Insider who loves channeling her pre-motherhood love of traveling into spending time exploring all D.C. has to offer with her brood of two girls and two boys ages 9, 7,5, and a baby. She is a reformed lawyer turned full-time kid wrangler who enjoys photographing her everyday chaos and anything salted caramel. Since life is never dull, she loves writing about the issues and events going on in her life at any given time, including caring for a daughter with special needs and th ... More

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