Teaching kids good personal finance habits sometimes means making sacrifices yourself

Everything you hear on TV is to go after your financial happiness with the job you want. That’s not always possible while supporting a family but your sacrifices can go a long way to teaching your kids about personal finance.

Today’s essay is by Hailey Ramirez, a student at the University of Arizona. She shares how her parents’ sacrifices shaped her economic future and taught her good personal finance habits.

Check out Hailey’s story and please share on social media. The most-shared essay on how parents can teach their kids about money will win our $500 personal finance scholarship, announced August 31st!

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What Shaped My Economic Choices?

Growing up, my parents did not have a lot of money. When I was born, they were 21 and still in college. By the time they graduated they were drowning in loans with no stable jobs to support themselves. That’s when they decided to move back to their hometown of Tucson.

With the support of their families, they were able to raise me and find jobs to make a sufficient living. My father went into the police academy where he was guaranteed a full-time job and my mother got a job as a teacher.

Making Sacrifices for Personal Finance

My parents took these jobs not because they wanted to, but because they had to.  They needed to earn a stable income fast so they chose jobs that had a high employment rate with benefits. This made me realize that sacrifices have to be made sometimes in order to make a stable living.

They both have degrees in something that they are passionate about, but do not use them in the job they are currently working at. They are unable to chase their dream jobs due to the pressure to maintain a stable household. Between paying off their student loans, utilities, insurance, and other basic needs my parents had no other option.

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From this, I have learned I have to try my hardest to not allow money to dictate my life. In order to start on the right foot, I have begun applying for scholarships in order to lower the amount of loans I will need to pull out to stay enrolled in school.

Learning to Budget and Prepare with a Plan

I have also had a job since I was 16, where I dedicate almost all m earnings to a saving account which I only use to pay form tuition and educational supplies. I try to budget myself as much as possible in order to save the most I can. I spend money for personal pleasure such as the movies once a month and all other transactions are for necessary items such as gas.

The most crucial thing my parents have taught me about is money is being aware of it and the implications that can come if you are not. The best way to not have debt ruin your life is to prepare for all the costs and make a plan.

Every time I wanted to go to a summer camp or retreat my parents would sit me down and break down the costs. Once we did that, I had a list of jobs I had to complete in order to go on the trip. This showed me how work leads to value, and with that you can reach your end goal.

Read Next: Learn how to start investing with these eight stock market rules.

Almost everything has a cost, and work must be put in to get whatever you want. This is a huge lesson that I still use to this day and will most likely use for the rest of my live. With the many lessons my parents have taught me while growing up, I have an understanding off the importance of money and the enormous role it plays in my life.

I want to thank Hailey for her essay on her parents’ choices and how they shaped her personal finance success by learning to budget and save. Be sure to support Hailey by sharing the article through social media and check in August for the winner of the personal finance scholarship.

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