Financial education is fundamental in the life of every person, since it allows us to know the advantages and risks of money for the benefit of our financial and economic health, but unfortunately it is not yet considered a priority issue in the family and social environment.
For starters, “financial education” has an unattractive name. Imagine talking to a young man about financial education. It is likely that he will answer us with the phrase: What laziness!
But that is an essential issue in our existence, so it is urgent to start talking about the importance of money – its proper and prudent handling – not only with millennials, but also with girls and boys. We need to explain to them how difficult it is to earn it and that once it is in our possession, there are a number of options to keep it or invest it safely. As parents, we have a responsibility to teach them the correct and most effective way to use their financial resources and how to save.
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It is advisable to touch on these topics at lunchtime, after dinner, talk with them according to their age, their level of understanding and understanding. Talk to them about the importance of having a family budget for their individual financial well-being and that of their families, as well as helping them develop skills to make informed decisions about the use of money.
The objective is precisely that money ceases to be a taboo subject in Mexican families. We must discuss the matter, we cannot avoid an issue that will accompany us throughout our existence. The “silver” is not everything, but it helps to have a better life in all aspects.
It is very important for young people to make them see the value and the way in which capital should be spent; Due to their age, it is vital that they know through simple and colloquial language what financial products are, how a bank account works, how many there are. Also tell them, for example, that when they start their working life they will need to open an account to deposit their salary, that in that sense there are risks, but also insurance that can cover them and that, at a given moment, they will have to have an account savings so that, in the not so distant future, they can have a good retirement.
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Parents and their children, regardless of their age, must understand that financial education is essential to manage our personal finances well. This type of knowledge is of great value for everyone, because in this way we make better informed decisions: how to use a credit card properly? When is a debt good or bad?
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We have to sensitize and inform the population about the importance of developing sufficient financial capacities to manage and make the best use of their money, an objective to which we are highly committed in the National Commission for the Protection and Defense of Service Users Financial (Condusef).
Financial education allows us to learn how to make a budget to achieve economic stability, how to achieve the goal of saving, the advantages and risks of the financial sector and how to protect ourselves from fraud. In other words, having a greater financial education means that in the near future we will be able to have more savings, that we will know how to use credit strategically, that we will no longer be tied to debt and that we will not only be able to survive, but also have a life better.
Without a doubt, financial education has to do with the quality of life that is based on three main axes: physical health, mental health and financial health. If we have a mess in our personal finances, it is inevitable that our physical and mental health will deteriorate. Even our relationships can be damaged, the environment with a partner, with family or with co-workers can be broken. Financial, physical and mental health are the axis on which a full existence rests.
The financial issue – it is better to know, understand and face it – is inescapable. We can decide our marital status, some will have the fortune to determine where to live, but what we will not be able to avoid is finding ourselves sooner rather than later with the issue of having a bank account, taking out insurance to cover any risk, be it the car or medical expenses in a time as complex as the one we live in.
Financial education may seem distant, boring or meaningless, but it permeates every aspect of life, it will accompany us at all times and for that reason I invite you to start seeing it as a great friend, not the opposite.
* Óscar Rosado Jiménez is president of the National Commission for the Protection and Defense of Users of Financial Services (CONDUSEF).
The opinions expressed are solely the responsibility of their authors and are completely independent of the position and editorial line of Forbes Mexico.