Teachable Moments at Thanksgiving

As people prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday, some are looking forward to it and waxing poetic about family togetherness while others are just going to try to grin and bear it. Here is another approach: think about the Thanksgiving holiday as a time to help younger relatives prepare for a better financial future. It can be a teachable moment.

Whether it is your own children and grandchildren or your nieces, nephews, and cousins: “As Thanksgiving approaches, you have the ability to influence young people to save and invest now — not to put that off until some later day.” 

This advice comes courtesy of “Pass the financial knowledge this Thanksgiving,” a business column published in The Mercury News.

After hearing from readers expressing their regret over the state of their finances, columnist Julie Jason decided to encourage more people to talk finance (instead of turkey or politics) this Thanksgiving.

Many people may have done more financial planning if they’d had even just one person to give them a bit of sound financial advice. And that advice doesn’t have be extremely detailed or technical; you could simply share the importance of starting to save for retirement early instead of waiting. Even if you can’t adequately explain compound interest, you can explain that saving more over a longer period of time yields better results.

It is tempting to just recall stories of the failed investments or financial missteps of various relatives, but be sure to balance these tales with those of financial success. Your family has financial superstars too. You can highlight homeownership, land ownership, small businesses, and those living in comfortable retirement. They don’t need to be the richest people; they just need to be doing well enough to live comfortably.

And if you worry that your kids won’t listen to you, it is okay. You may reach younger relatives or friends. And hopefully, your counterparts have the ears of your children and grandchildren who may be more likely to listen to sound financial advice from other relative and friends of the family.


©Bring Clarity to Your Finances. Teachable Moments at Thanksgiving is a post from Bring Clarity to Your Finances

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Claire Emory, MBA, CFA, CFP®

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