Like it or not, we often end up a lot like our parents. Whether it’s the genes they gave us, or the way they raised us, we’ve been molded into miniature bizarro versions of them. To be honest, I’m 100% okay with that.
I love my parents. Yep, it’s true. I love my sisters, too, for that matter. I’m not going to get all gushy about this. Just wanted to lay that out there. And here’s the thing: my sisters and I are alike in a lot of ways. But there are also a lot of differences between us (and compared to our parents, too). But I think my parents have shaped my goals, views, and ideas, whether they meant to or not.
I’ve always been a saver. In fact, when we were younger, I was the only one of the 3 girls that had extra money lying around in our piggy banks. Allowance, gift money, etc. all went into my money jar. I think my mother was the first personal finance guru I listened to. She often picked up books on personal finance, investing, and similar topics from the library (and still does!). And both my parents drilled those basic tenets of personal finance into my head. Pay yourself first. Save at least 10%. Spend less than you earn. They also led by example, saving and investing money for the long term, avoiding extravagance. My mom gave me her copy of The Wealthy Barber to read, which started me on my way towards my own personal finance obsession! And just today, she told me about a new personal finance book she was reading, and shared her advice.
This, of course, is only a small part of the ways that my parents shared their values with my sisters and me. But I don’t want to get too sappy here! So I’ll stop.
Where did you get your personal finance start? Your parents? A friend? Your own realization that you need to change your finances? What got you going down the path to financial freedom?