Mega rich musician Sting recently announced publicly that he won’t be leaving his fortune to his kids. While some might see this as a malicious or cruel act, his choice is very intentional and comes from a caring and supportive place. Sting grew up with hard working parents and learned the value of self-reliance at an early age. His concern that his children would not have the same opportunity to learn and grow inspired his decision. In an interview with the Daily Mail, Sting said,
‘I certainly don’t want to leave them trust funds that are albatrosses round their necks. They have to work. All my kids know that and they rarely ask me for anything, which I really respect and appreciate. Obviously, if they were in trouble I would help them, but I’ve never really had to do that. They have the work ethic that makes them want to succeed on their own merit.’
Does our desire to support our kids and give them everything that we can ultimately build their self-reliance and their ambition and drive? Its not an easy balance to strike but one we should certainly consider, not only as it relates to inheritance but in our daily interactions around money as well.
Jean Chatzky offers 6 clear steps to teaching financial knowledge and responsibility to our kids.
Step 1: Stop spoiling your kids
Step 2: Give an allowance…then make it work
Step 3: Make saving and investing a habit
Step 4: Teach your children to work
Step 5: Teach your children to give
Step 6: Teach good credit card habits
Do you think Sting is being cruel or kind? What do you do to encourage self-reliance and financial responsibility to your kids?