Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan once said, “The number one problem in today’s generation and economy is the lack of financial literacy.” In today’s world, financial freedom is beginning to become a topic of real importance. Yet, many people in our country who want to gain this financial well-being would not be able to tell you where to start. For too long, financial health and wellness have been thrown to the side as new generations become adults contributing to societies. Parents not wanting to burden their children with the stress of finances. Children too afraid to ask their parents about big financial decisions. This has set a precedent across the country that is leaving young adults, who do not have the proper knowledge, to face huge choices financially. In honor of April being Financial Literacy Awareness month, I, along with the Miller Financial Group are looking to bring attention to a glaring need in society.
So, how does one start educating themselves on financial literacy? You can start by having the conversations we are avoiding. Children, do not be afraid to reach out to your parents. They have more than likely experienced what you are going through to some extent. Parents, involve your kids in your finances as they grow. Planting the seed early will give them a head start in their adulthood. Friends, be open and candid in conversation about finance. Having one another to lean on creates a safety net and relieves the stress that comes with making financial decisions.
Next, find a trusted advisor. This does not necessarily mean hiring a financial professional right away. A trusted advisor could be a parent, friend, or mentor that you trust is looking out for your best interest. Financial professionals are not always affordable, but if you are in the position to afford one, find one! Look for an advisor that is genuinely concerned with your troubles and goals in life. Not the advisor that bores you with the spread of your returns year-over-year. Again, I reiterate the importance, be sure that your financial professional is in the best interest of YOU. A trusted advisor will be a tool for you to lean on when you are uneducated in a financial decision.
Finally, seek education. There is an infinite number of articles on the internet that teach you how to be more well-rounded financially. Sites like CNBC, Nerd Wallet, and Investopedia have great material for someone who is looking to better their financial health. Moreover, there are several programs out there that teach you, through many streams of learning, about financial literacy. The Foundation for Financial Planning, Life101, Mana Money School, and Centsables all are great programs to get yourself on the right track to financial wellbeing.
Furthermore, the Miller Financial Group is working to serve the community through financial literacy. Elizabeth Craddock, our Chief Relationship Officer, and Financial Advisor will be one of three panelists speaking on financial literacy for women Thursday, April 22 at the Junior League of Charlottesville Women’s Summit: Female Financial Empowerment. Also, the Miller Financial Group is in the works on creating a financial literacy program for collegiate student-athletes across the nation. It is an issue that is near and dear to my heart, so I want to leave you with this charge. Be someone who brings awareness to the education of personal finance, and not someone who avoids it.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results.
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