“Literacy”, according to Webster’s dictionary, is “the ability to read and write”. So it follows that “Financial Literacy” is the ability to read and write numbers. When I first saw the term “Financial Intelligence” on the cover of the book by Karen Berman and Joe Knight, I thought “THAT’s what I’ve been looking for!” – because a lot of us can READ numbers, but what we really want to do is TRANSLATE the numbers and figure out what they are telling us. Right? Numbers are like a language – only easier: if I’m learning Spanish, I have to learn nouns, verbs and adjectives, feminine and masculine, past, present and future AND the grammar rules that give a sentence that wonderful rhythm – and meaning! Numbers don’t have tenses or genders or parts of speech – but they DO have meaning. Leave the complicated stuff to the professionals and learn the simple stuff: what is the story my numbers are telling me. If you need a translator at first, check out http://www.financedog.com or any of the books on “Financial Intelligence” at The Business Literacy Institute http://www.business-literacy.com. Before you know it, you’ll know your story – and you can begin to write the next chapters!
For a real light touch, if business books are not your thing, check out the Financial Intelligence graphic novel (okay – comic book) at http://www.business-literacy.com
On today’s “Money In Your Life” radio show (link attached), Dr. Tim Kasser talked about his work studying the link between materialistic values and self esteem. He has done studies across the age spectrum, but important work with tweens and teens that have shown that, not only can you not buy happiness but that focus on status/image/money have a deep affect on a child’s self-esteem and on how that child shows up and functions in society. Listen to the show – and watch the short Youtube – to sort out what you can do, what your child can do and what advertisers can do.