Generational Wisdom in 32 Questions

What can we learn from earlier generations? Quite a bit, says Brendon Burchard, but only if we ask the right questions.

Brendon Burchard, famed personal development trainer and author of The Motivation Manifesto (Carlsbad, Hay House, 2014) says asking your mother, father and/or another loved one these 32 important questions can teach you valuable lessons about love, life, and what matters most. Burchard suggests recording the conversation so the lessons and messages can be passed down easily to your children and grandchildren. Use these questions as a springboard and see what you didn’t know about your elder loved ones:

  1. What comes to mind when you think about growing up in your hometown?
  2. What did you love to do as a kid, before high school?
  3. What did you love to do in high school?
  4. What do remember most about your teenage years?
  5. What do you remember most about your mom (grandma)?
  6. What was most important to her?
  7. What do you remember most about your dad (grandpa)?
  8. What was most important to him?
  9. If Grandma and Grandpa had a message to pass along to the grandchildren, what would it be?
  10. How did you meet your spouse? How did you know (s)he was the one?
  11. How did you choose your career? What was your favorite part about it?
  12. What made you successful?
  13. What did you believe about yourself that helped you become successful and deal with hard times?
  14. What times in your life truly “tested your mettle,” and what did you learn about yourself by dealing (or not dealing) with them?
  15. What three events most shaped your life?
  16. What do you remember about when I was born?
  17. Were you ever scared to be a parent?
  18. What three words would you say represents your approach to parenting and why?
  19. When you think about [sibling] how would you describe him/her?
  20. What message do you have for [sibling] that you want him/her to always keep in mind?

[Do the last two questions above for each sibling in your family]

  1. When you think about [spouse], how would you describe her/him?
  2. What message do you have for [spouse] that you want her/him to always keep in mind?
  3. What three words would you say best describe who you tried to be in life? How would you like to be remembered?
  4. What do you think your children and grandchildren should focus on professionally?
  5. What have you learned about people in life?
  6. What do you think the world needs more of right now?
  7. What do you believe people want the most in life?
  8. What were the three best decisions you ever made?
  9. What are you most proud of?
  10. What were five of the most memorable moments of your life?
  11. What message would you like to share with your family?
  12. What are you most thankful for?

These questions can reveal a wealth of valuable life lessons – family treasures to share with generations to come. But having this conversation is just a start. To preserve and protect your family assets and other things of value, you should create a comprehensive estate plan that will safeguard what you value most. And, we include a recorded Family Wealth Legacy Interview, which becomes a priceless family legacy piece for your loved ones, with every estate plan we create.

If you need guidance in planning for your future, start by coming in to meet with us for a Family Wealth Planning Session. As your Personal Family Lawyer®, we can guide you in creating a comprehensive estate plan that protects and preserves your most valuable assets. Before the session, we’ll send you a Family Wealth Inventory and Assessment to complete that will get you thinking about what you own, what matters most to you, and what you want to leave behind.

We don’t just draft documents, we ensure you make informed and empowered decisions about life and death, for yourself and the people you love.  That’s why we offer a Family Wealth Planning Session™ during which you will get more financially organized than you’ve ever been before, and make all the best choices for the people you love. Begin by calling our office today to schedule a Family Wealth Planning Session.

The Future of Finances: How to Teach Your Kids to Be Money Savvy

Part of being an enlightened parent is being thoughtful about how we teach our kids about adult life. Of course, you want to prepare them to make good choices as an adult, especially when it comes to finances. And, you may either feel not equipped, or you may be concerned about passing on your own bad habits.

So, how do you teach kids about smart financial decision-making? What lessons should you teach? Is leading by example enough? Raising a child to be money savvy doesn’t have to be hard, especially if you have valuable lessons to pass down. But it will take a little reflection on your own financial know-how and a commitment to make passing on these aspects of adult life conscious, rather than doing it unconsciously, as happens in most families.

Kids look to us to learn about life and they pick up far more from us about what we do than from what we say. Accordingly, we can best teach our children to be money savvy by modeling the habits we want them to take on for themselves and by involving them in the process. A good place to start is by being transparent about your financial habits when the opportunities arise.

For example, you could have a monthly financial meeting and include your kids, and each month review your household income and expenses, like a business owner, would when reviewing their profit and loss each month.

And, when you do your estate planning, involve your kids in the process by having a family meeting once the planning is done to explain the planning and introduce your child to us, as your personal legal advisor who they can turn to in the future when needed.

Modeling sound financial decision-making for your child is an excellent opportunity to take a deeper look at your own financial habits. This is a good time to take an honest look at your finances to make sure you are on track to meet your goals.

Assess your financial health and consider taking steps now to secure your financial future. Practice what you preach and know that your children are watching, so make sure you are modeling habits you’d be proud for them to develop as they enter adulthood.

If you need guidance in assessing your own financial health and habits, start by coming in to meet with us for a Family Wealth Planning Session™. As your Personal Family Lawyer®, we can guide you in creating a comprehensive financial plan that protects and preserves your wealth while meeting all your financial obligations. Before the session, we’ll send you a Family Wealth Inventory and Assessment to complete that will get you thinking about what you own, what matters most to you, and what you want to leave behind.

At GP Schoemakers, PLLC we don’t just draft documents, we ensure you make informed and empowered decisions about life and death, for yourself and the people you love.  That’s why we offer a Family Wealth Planning Session™ during which you will get more financially organized than you’ve ever been before, and make all the best choices for the people you love. Begin by calling our office today to schedule a Family Wealth Planning Session.