What I learned from my mom about money

April 28, 2021

In honor of Mother’s Day, U.S. Bank employees share the real-life money advice they’ve received from their moms over the years.


We’ve all heard the phrase “mother know best” — and so often it’s true. Life experience (including trial and error) leads to wisdom and perspective, and when it comes to handling money, a mother’s wisdom can be especially helpful. To celebrate Mother’s Day, U.S. Bank employees share their mothers’ valuable financial lessons that have helped shape their values and guide important financial decisions through the years.


1. Donate to causes you care about

When it comes to living with integrity, the Golden Rule is a wonderful reminder to always treat others as you wish to be treated by helping those in need and giving back whenever you can.

From my mom 

“I learned to live by the loving Golden Rule, and not the one where whoever has the gold makes the rules.” – Nancy F.

If you’re in a position where you’re able to make a positive contribution, whether it’s by volunteering in your community or financially supporting the causes you care about, you’re living by the Golden Rule. It’s important to find a balance of working toward financial stability while also living in the spirit of giving.


2. Embrace DIY projects

Today, most everything is easily accessible. You can order clothes online in a few clicks and have food delivered within minutes. But slowing down and exploring your own capabilities can be a fun and financially savvy activity.

From my mom 

“I learned a little bit about cooking and sewing my own clothes, which I haven’t done for a long time but have been thinking of doing it now that I’m working from home” – Pamela V.

Finding interesting recipes, picking out ingredients from a local store and preparing weekly meals can be a wonderful part of your routine. In addition to the health benefits of knowing exactly what you’re eating, you’ll be able to save money that you might otherwise spend on takeout for the sake of convenience. Experimenting with creative hobbies like knitting, sewing, woodworking and even home renovation can also save you money in the long run.


3. Commit to your goals

We all have big dreams, whether it’s moving to a new city, taking a relaxing vacation or investing in higher education. Saving for goals like these takes time and effort, but it’s absolutely possible when you decide to work toward it and stay positive. Start by making a commitment to your hopes and dreams, knowing that patience in achieving them will be a necessary part of the process.

From my mom 

“My mother was a server in a restaurant and always had a pile of coins in her tips at the end of the night. She would put those coins in a five-gallon jug and that was how she saved up for vacations. We would spend a whole afternoon rolling change! It’s amazing how fast it adds up.” – Amanda B


4. Cultivate strong work ethic

Focus on developing new skills and working to improve them throughout life. On a personal level, this will show you how much you’re capable of, and it will also open the door to professional opportunities and financial stability.

From my mom

“I learned how to cook and work in her small casual restaurant in St. Louis while growing up. I learned how to work and operate a small business, be a waitress, hostess and deliver food. I had to work hard, and she always said, ‘Have a good work ethic!’” – Hazel T.

Surrounding yourself with others to teach you and support your growth — whether it’s your mother, a friend or people in your community — will empower you and benefit others down the line. A diverse skillset, fueled by a desire to learn and work hard, will set you up for fulfillment and financial success in life.


Find more insight about saving, budgeting, and goals, see our personal finance resources.

Related content

Multiple accounts can make it easier to follow a monthly budget

Preparing for retirement: 8 steps to take

How to talk about money with your family

Retirement income planning: 4 steps to take

Good money habits: 6 common money mistakes to avoid

Should rising interest rates change your financial priorities?

Is a Health Savings Account missing from your retirement plan?

Your 4-step guide to financial planning

How grandparents can contribute to college funds instead of buying gifts

Saving vs. investing: What's the difference?

How does money influence your planning?

Loud budgeting explained: Amplify your money talk

Do your investments match your financial goals?

Retirement expectations quiz

Retirement savings by age

Preparing for retirement: 8 steps to take

Lost job finance tips: What to do when you lose your job

Transitioning from the military to the civilian workforce

Working with an accountability partner can help you reach your goals

What to do with your tax refund or bonus

3 financial tools to help automate your finances

How I did it: Bought a home without a 20 percent down payment

How to increase your savings

How to gain financial independence from your parents

How to Adult: 5 ways to track your spending

Checklist: 10 questions to ask your home inspector

Closing on a house checklist for buyers

How compound interest works

How to track expenses

How to build wealth at any age

5 tips for parents opening a bank account for kids

Investment strategies by age

5 financial goals for the new year

How to get started creating your business plan

How to financially prepare for pet costs

Checklist: financial recovery after a natural disaster

3 steps to prepare for a medical emergency

Family planning for the LGBTQ+ community

Preparing for adoption and IVF

11 essential things to do before baby comes

Webinar: Uncover the cost: Starting a family

3 tips for saving money when moving to a new home

5 ways to maximize your garage sale profits 

Pros and cons of a personal line credit

Tips for handling rising costs from an Operation HOPE Financial Wellbeing coach

Tips to earn that A+ in back-to-school savings

Mindset Matters: How to practice mindful spending

Uncover the cost: International trip

Uncover the cost: Wedding

Using 529 plans for K-12 tuition

How to manage your finances when you're self-employed

Does your side business need a separate bank account?

How to choose the right business savings account

Make your business legit

Talent acquisition 101: Building a small business dream team

5 things to know before accepting a first job offer

How to save money while helping the environment

7 steps to prepare for the high cost of child care

How to decide when to shop local and when to shop online

5 myths about emergency funds

How to save for a wedding

How I did it: Turned my side hustle into a full-time job

Stay on budget — and on the go — with a mobile banking app

5 things to consider when deciding to take an unplanned trip

How to talk to your lender about debt

Stay committed to your goals by creating positive habits

5 tips for creating (and sticking to) a holiday budget

How to test new business ideas

How can I help my student manage money?

Bank from home with these digital features

How I did it: Switched career paths by taking an unexpected pivot

Year-end financial checklist

Key components of a financial plan

Achieving their dreams through a pre-apprenticeship construction program

Don’t underestimate the importance of balancing your checking account

Credit: Do you understand it?

How to manage money in the military: A veteran weighs in

Are professional movers worth the cost?

Beyond the mortgage: Other costs for homeowners

Saving for a down payment: Where should I keep my money?

Spring cleaning checklist for your home: 5 budget-boosting tasks

Home buying myths: Realities of owning a home

Travel for less: Smart (not cheap) ways to spend less on your next trip

Should you buy now, pay later?

U.S. Bank asks: Do you know what an overdraft is?

Tips for working in the gig economy

Which is better: Combining bank accounts before marriage — or after?

Tips to overcome three common savings hurdles

Money Moments: 8 dos and don’ts for saving money in your 30s

Save time and money with automatic bill pay

Helpful tips for safe and smart charitable giving

Growing your savings by going on a ‘money hunt’

Why a mobile banking app is a ‘must have’ for your next vacation

Tips to raise financially healthy kids at every age

How I kicked my online shopping habit and got my spending under control

Friction: How it can help achieve money goals

It's possible: 7 tips for breaking the spending cycle

Financial checklist: Preparing for military deployment

Here’s how to create a budget for yourself

Webinar: Common budget mistakes (and how to avoid them)

Checking and savings smarts: Make your accounts work harder for you

Are savings bonds still a thing?

Allowance basics for parents and kids

9 simple ways to save

Do you and your fiancé have compatible financial goals?

3 ways to keep costs down at the grocery store (and make meal planning fun)

What military service taught me about money management

College budgeting: When to save and splurge

How I did it: Paid off student loans

The A to Z’s of college loan terms

How to save money in college: easy ways to spend less

Costs to consider when starting a business

Adulting 101: How to make a budget plan

You can take these 18 budgeting tips straight to the bank

How I did it: Learned to budget as a single mom

Personal loans first-timer's guide: 7 questions to ask

Consolidating debts: Pros and cons to keep in mind

Improving your credit score: Truth and myths revealed

Dear Money Mentor: How do I set and track financial goals?

What I learned from my mom about money

6 ways to spring clean your finances and save money year-round

How to cut mindless spending: real tips from real people

What financial advice would you give your younger self?

Practical money tips we've learned from our dads

How to stop living paycheck to paycheck post-pay increase

What you need to know about renting

What’s in your emergency fund?

Certificates of deposit: How they work to grow your money

Dear Money Mentor: How do I pick a savings or checking account?

How I did it: Deciding whether to buy an RV

Practical money skills and financial tips for college students

Money management guide to financial independence

Personal finance for teens can empower your child

5 reasons why couples may have separate bank accounts

U.S. Bank asks: Transitioning out of college life? What’s next?

Co-signing 101: Applying for a loan with co-borrower

How to use debt to build wealth

How having savings gives you peace of mind

How to build credit as a student

30-day adulting challenge: Financial wellness tasks to complete in a month

Money Moments: Tips for selling your home

How I did it: My house remodel

First-timer’s guide to savings account alternatives

Does your savings plan match your lifestyle?

3 tips for saving money easily

Webinar: Uncover the cost: College diploma

Myths vs. facts about savings account interest rates

Military homeownership: Your guide to resources, financing and more

U.S. Bank asks: Do you know your finances?

Webinar: Bank Notes: College cost comparison

Healthcare costs in retirement: Are you prepared?

Parent checklist: Preparing for college

U.S. Bank asks: What do you know about credit?

7 financial questions to consider when changing jobs

Webinar: 5 myths about emergency funds

How to best handle unexpected expenses

Start of disclosure content

Loan approval is subject to credit approval and program guidelines. Not all loan programs are available in all states for all loan amounts. Interest rates and program terms are subject to change without notice. Mortgage, home equity and credit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Deposit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC.