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Alert: Money Is Important!

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Guest blogger Jessica Katz: Growing up, I was always taught that money can't buy happiness. "If you have love, you have all you need," my parents told me, along with many other fiscally flippant chestnuts -- all of which were aimed at teaching me that money wasn't everything, so I shouldn't be materialistic.

Despite my parents' best efforts, however, I still coveted designer clothing, fancy shoes and the ever-popular Teddy Ruxpin. As I grew, so did my taste for the finer things -- which inspired me to work hard to get them. My sister, on the other hand, had (and still has) no interest in having nice things, and therefore has no interest in working hard to get them. She flunked out of college and never desired a good career or even a rich husband. Why should she work hard when she is perfectly fine in her mediocre life with her mediocre stuff? 

So ... I found myself telling my baby the other day how important money is. In my view, there is nothing wrong with knowing that money is good. It motivates! Children with a healthy understanding of financial success have a stronger work ethic than those who don't. Money buys nice things, pays rent, pays for college (and preschool), buys food and even buys underwear. Let's face it: It makes life easier, so it's important to work hard to get it. 

I'm not saying that you need to buy your kids "stuff" for them to think life is good. I'm just saying that money may not buy happiness, but it does buy you things that make you happy.

next: Get Your Whole Family Healthy -- NOW!
11 comments so far | Post a comment now
Robin September 23, 2010, 11:35 AM

“Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it does buy things that make you happy.” That is the point. It seems that your sister, whom you seem to look down on in a not so subtle manner, has a different definition of happiness than you do. Why do you characterize her life as “mediocre”? Way to put yourself on a pedestal there. Money is necessary. I agree children should have a good understanding of how it works and what it means in society. I also think children shouldn’t look down on anyone else for their lack of money. That “mediocre” life your sister has sounds more fulfilling to her than your money-important life does to you. Money is important, but it isn’t close to being everything. Make sure your children understand that too.

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