Del Smith, the millionaire founder and chairman of Evergreen International Aviation, has often said, "Thank God I was born poor; I learned how to work." Like many others who made it to the top on their own, Smith believes that the greatest gift that can be given to a child is to teach him or her the value of work. It is a gift that can never be lost or stolen.
It's a natural desire of parents to give their children material things they didn't have as children. Such generosity, however, often deprives children of the greatest gift you can give them: confidence in their ability to take care of themselves. When you make life "hard" for your children by requiring them to learn the value of work, they will have a far greater likelihood of success as adults.