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What's your butter?

Updated: Feb 27, 2021

The big picture: Your Sherpa teams up with parents to help produce future-ready young adults. First, we create a sense of urgency over the NEED to save. Second, we motivate young people to WANT to save by demonstrating how money can grow. Third, we ensure young people stay in the POSITION to save by avoiding obstacles to saving like crippling college debt or being underemployed. And fourth, we teach HOW to save with an emphasis on the right mindset and method to succeed. Today's post fits into the HOW to save part of my framework. Specifically, that saving money may require sacrifices today for the future, but DON'T forget to live your life today as well!

Back to today's post: Have you ever gotten confused about a memory? Was it a real personal experience or a story you heard? Well, put 'what's your butter?' in that category.

As I 'remember' it, I heard a woman speak in church. She openly admitted to living below the poverty line. She confessed, and sadly she genuinely seemed to feel bad about it, that she splurged on 'real' butter. She knew she really couldn't afford it, but she felt, "to be a real, loving Grandma that she needed real butter for baking", which was her passion.

How does this fit into our financial literacy and life skills teaching framework? My take-away is that if we have the mindset and lifestyle to make daily decisions to save, it is okay to have one or two areas of indulgence in our lives. Treat yourself so you know you live for today while you are preparing for the future.

For my family, our 'butter' is travel. I'll happily drive a 13-year-old car or not even think about replacing the cat-scratched couch so long as we can occasionally take a family trip. Our trips have created lasting family experiences and memories. My wife and I also learned early on that planning trips well in advance allowed the kids to do research and to enjoy the anticipation leading up to the trip.

So, what's your butter?

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