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The Goal Is Not to Raise Good Kids, but Great Adults

Andy Andrews puts it this way: “The goal is not to raise great kids. It’s to raise kids who become great adults.”

It’s a subtle but powerful distinction. Kids can behave well out of obedience or fear, but that doesn’t mean they’ll do what’s best when they venture out on their own. To raise kids who become great adults, you must instill character traits in them that will inform their future decisions and actions.

One of the best ways you can make sure your kids are ready to face adulthood when the time comes is to teach them how to handle money now. That’s because money isn’t just about money.

In Dave and Rachel’s course Smart Money Smart Kids, you will learn that teaching kids to handle money really teaches them so much more.

Teaching kids to handle money really teaches them so much more.

When you teach a kid to work, you teach them responsibility.

That’s because work—whether it is chores around the house or a job at the mall—involves follow-through, best efforts and accountability. Work shows your daughter that she alone is in control of her actions, and that she will reap the consequences or rewards of her labor. Great adults are responsible.

When you teach a kid to spend, you teach them to use wisdom.

Spending money is fun. Kids totally get this. When you get involved, your son learns that, yes, spending money is fun, but he also learns it's something that should be done with care. Smart spending requires good judgment—a vital life skill. Great adults use wisdom.

When you teach a kid to save, you teach them patience.

Kids are growing up in a world of instant gratification. Saving money makes kids slow way down. This might hurt a little, but that’s okay. Saving money will show your daughter that she can’t necessarily have everything she wants right when she wants it. Great adults practice patience.

When you teach a kid to give, you teach them generosity.

Generosity is defined as the willingness to give, but that doesn’t come natural to many kids. As a parent, encourage the act of giving and watch your son’s heart change over time as he takes action. Generosity is a necessary weapon to fight against selfishness and greed. Great adults are generous.

When you teach a kid to avoid debt, you teach them honesty.

Debt allows people to live a lie. With debt, you can buy a bigger house, drive a nicer car, and eat fancier dinners. If your daughter wants to avoid debt for life, she’ll have to be honest with herself and everyone around her about what she can actually afford and, more importantly, who she really is. Great adults are honest.

When you teach a kid to be content, you teach them gratitude.

Contentment comes from the recognition that God owns it all. He created everything we have and all that we are. He cares about it all too. When kids grasp this concept, they can be okay with who God made them to be and what God’s given them to manage. Everything else is just a bonus. If your son learns to be content, he will be constantly grateful. Great adults practice gratitude.

Video lessons

Your child can win in life and money. Check out our online courses!

Imagine your life 20 years from now. Your kids are grown and gone. What do you hope for their futures? Keep those dreams in mind as you start working on tomorrow today.

Learn more about helping your kids win with money—Smart Money Smart Kids is now included with a Financial Peace Membership!

Ramsey Solutions

About the author

Ramsey Solutions

Ramsey Solutions has been committed to helping people regain control of their money, build wealth, grow their leadership skills, and enhance their lives through personal development since 1992. Millions of people have used our financial advice through 22 books (including 12 national bestsellers) published by Ramsey Press, as well as two syndicated radio shows and 10 podcasts, which have over 17 million weekly listeners.