Many of us have grown up with parents who have encouraged us to save, yet we splurge at malls. Will Gen Next face a debt crisis?
Step inside any mall in India on a weekend, and you will be stunned by the number of people out there, shopping. And if it is a discounted mall like Big Bazaar, be prepared to wait for half an hour at the checkout counter.
What is this shopping craze that has gripped the nation? Many of us have grown up with parents who have encouraged us to save, yet we splurge at malls. Our children are likely to be far more casual with money, and the debt crisis that has gripped western nations like the United States are sure to catch up with our next generation.
Are you a 'hoarder?' This is not entirely a good habit, as it adds to clutter without ensuring that we shop less, as hoarders refuse to get rid anything, including items they don't need and will not use. Hoarding also encourages collecting, and the desire to possess. Discourage hoarding, and get rid of things you don't need.
Essentially, many of us pick up trinkets here and there, even if we don't need them, thinking that we will pass them on as gifts. We may or may not do this, and if we do pass it on, it may be inappropriate, or many years later. Instead, save your money and only shop keeping someone in mind. The gift will be a lot more meaningful, and you would have saved money by not uselessly spending on random items that may or may not serve as gifts.
'Mood enhancing' shopping
When your child is upset, don't cheer her up by buying her something new. This will lead to her developing 'shopaholic' tendencies. Some people eat to counter depression, some drink alcohol, and some shop. Shopping gives some people a high, and this can be dangerous if it spirals out of control. In America, many families are teetering on the brink of disaster as bankruptcy is staring at their faces, despite parents being qualified professionals in well paying jobs. Why is this happening? Because the constant desire to shop and lead a luxurious lifestyle is greater than the income.
Teach your child from the onset to always live within his means, and do so by setting the example yourself. Even if you are wealthy, have a budget and work accordingly.
Give your children pocket money. Ensure it is a decent enough amount that will meet his basic and a few extra needs. If your child wants to buy something expensive, let him save up. Not only will this make him appreciate his new purchase more, but he will also learn to wait for something.
In this world of 'buy now pay later,' waiting and saving up for something seems to be a mindset of the past. We tend to go out and get something as soon as we want it, and soon we will be getting things even if we are unable to afford it. And even if we are more sensible about spending money, it is likely that the next generation will be nowhere as prudent.
So if you don't want your child to find himself buried under debt some day, start instilling the right values today.