The American Dream vs. The Me Dream: Family Finance Picks #75

“Motivation is when your dreams put on work clothes” – Benjamin Franklin
“Life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.”

That’s a definition of the American Dream supplied by James Truslow Adams in 1931. The American Dream is the common thread running through this week’s family finance picks. Read on to delve into these deep family finance questions:

  • Are today’s 20 somethings engaged in the American Dream or the Me Dream?
  • How do we encourage the spirit of entrepreneurialism in our kids that is so central to the notion of the American Dream?
  • Is our society even equipping kids with the basic financial capabilities required to participate in the American Dream?

Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy

Tim writes a very thought provoking article for parents and older kids to read and ponder. It focuses on the equation:


Tim contends that all the “you’re special” and “follow your passions” messaging during the Gen Y formative years has inflated expectations relative to reality. The result? A happiness deficit in today’s twenty-somethings. His advice to Gen Y in a nutshell is:

  • Keep the ambition and get to work.
  • Ditch the entitlement mentality.
  • Ignore what your peers claim they’re achieving in social media.

Read Tim’s entertaining “GYPSY” tirade and see his clever stick figure drawings here

So how are you doing as a parent when it comes to managing the gap between expectations and reality for your kids?

Discuss on FaceBook.

The Best Way to Raise a Young Entrepreneur

Self-made entrepreneurs have always been revered symbols of the American Dream. So how do you encourage the entrepreneurial spirit in your youngster? Gary shares some very thoughtful commentary on that score: You can’t force it, but you can certainly facilitate it.

Related FamZoo Activity: Teach your child business basics.
Discuss on FaceBook.

Director Cordray Remarks at the Annual Financial Literacy and Economic Education Conference

Richard Cordray, the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Council for Economic Education, spoke last week at the Annual Financial Literacy and Economic Education Conference. If you’re concerned about youth financial literacy in America, it’s a speech well worth reading. In particular, I like Richard’s focus on equipping individuals with the basic knowledge and capabilities needed to be their “own first line of consumer protection.” I also like Richard’s emphasis on practical topics and experiential learning.

As Richard says:

It is never too early to begin teaching our children the economic and financial concepts that will help them understand the nuts and bolts of how to make their dreams into reality.


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We’re constantly scouring the Internet looking for articles related to family finances and teaching kids good personal finance habits. You can visit our ever growing list of family finance bookmarks here. We’re up to 3,322 now!

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