7 realities about life and money

One of the perks of being an IMG member is that you have access to financial talks and updates from powerful people in the financial industry. One of them is Mr. Rex Mendoza, Senior Advisor to AIA Group CEO, and previously the President & CEO of Philam Life. Today, I like to share my experience as I attended one of his wealth management seminars. A lot of eye-openers and hard truths, there were.

I will talk about it, yes, but I swear I cannot pass it on with such vigor and enthusiasm as the speaker's. So I beg your pardon. Anyhow, my hidden agenda is that I hope you will thirst more for information that the next time he will be speaking here in Cebu, you'll be taking the front row seats armed with paper and pen.

And I just want to share this to you. Because I want you to be in abundance as well. It is like happiness in the saying "Happiness is like perfume - you can't pass in on to others without having some for yourself". And so I want you to pass it on too, like a nasty cold. So then we could happily sniff and sneeze together.

Alright. Let's talk about life and money.
life and money balance
life and money balance to achieve peace of mind
[1] "Suffer now and enjoy later OR enjoy now and suffer later" While we are young, capable and aggressive, do the most of it. Save and invest while the budget is healthy. So when we are old, quite incapable and weak, we can go slow and live on what we have saved and invested when we were young.

I have attended a separate business talk, and one achiever excitedly commented "Why do you sleep? You'll have plenty of it when you die!" So work hard now, work double time because when our knees start to ache, no matter how much we NEED to work, we can't.

[2] Do you want to be remembered as "a parent who left us with debts up to his death" or "a kind parent who thought of our future"? When you are old and poor, your kids (who you painstakingly sent to school) will pass you around - Oh, the ungrateful bastards. "Kuya, ang tagal na ni tatay sa akin, sa 'yo naman!". (Brother, dad has been with me for weeks, it's your turn now.) But when you are rich, it goes "Kuya, ang tagal naman ni tatay sa iyo, sa akin naman!(Brother, dad has been with you for weeks, it's my turn now.) Face it. Your kids will love you more when you are rich.

So while they are growing up and you are growing old, save some for yourself too, for your rainy days. Pay yourself too for your hardwork.

[3] Match your vehicle to your goal. Most Filipinos invest on time deposit - your cash gets locked in for a specific period, gains a little interest, then when the period is up, you get to decide whether to withdraw or roll it again. Scenario: Say you're saving for your child's college, and she's now three. She gets to college at 17, that's 14 years from now. Your money in time deposit gains at 4% (hooray). You roll and re-roll it for like 3 years already. And then you see that it is now, let's say, PHP200,000. Your eyes pop and drop. It's already that big and your child is still 14 years away from college so why not buy a new television? If you do, oh no, you're in deep doodoo. You use it up and can't repay to have it roll again. So when she (finally) gets to college, her tuition will still come from your present income.

saving in coin banks is not enough
Alkansi siya (your loss). Alkansiya (coin bank) in short.
It is a mismatch. Long-term goals should be placed in long-term investments. That way, they earn bigger. Short term investments earn less, of course. For your short-term goals, use a short-term investment - in banks. For long-term goals, there's the stock market and mutual funds.

You see, it is your discipline that is at stake. You will be tempted not just once to withdraw it since your goal is still too far from now. You put it in time-deposits because you have at the back of your mind that you might need it soon. But let's face it, how many months and years have passed, you didn't need it.

Where do you think banks put our money? In long-term investments, gaining about 20%, and they give us the short-term interest. They flourish on our ignorance.

[4] Invest here, it is more fun the Philippines. Because when the US economy is still struggling, ours remains strong. It is a pity that majority of the investors (and gainers, of course) in the Philippines are foreigners. If you're investing, go for Asian countries. Within Asia, it is the Southeast Asian countries. Within ASEAN, it is Indonesia and Philippines. Foreign traders are eyeing on our market, and we, on the other hand, do not support and love our own.

[5] Look for a good company - may they be persons or books. Five years from now, the books you read and the people you go out with will reflect on the life you live, your principles and your habits. So while we're at it, choose your environment. NOW. If you want to get rich, go to an environment where people are excited about being abundant, read books on how to get rich. Because we are made as adaptive creatures, we react to what is around us.

Let me share a snippet of my childhood. I was in the elementary years, about 7 or 8. We had an exam on Christian Living, a true or false part of the periodical exams. The statement was "Make friends only with the rich" I marked it true. The teacher checked it. And mama complained.

Another snippet. I was in highschool when a close teacher (and friend) passed on to me his philosophy books: The Tao of Pooh, The Teh of Piglet, Sophie's World, etc. I also started to read self-help books. Now these things reflect in my works, principles and how I look at life.

[6] Dream to have more so you can share more. 

[7] Lastly, hold on to this. AMBITION. Do not stop dreaming. Do not let your ambitions stop growing. BREAKTHROUGH. Find your breakthrough - a chance, an opportunity to change for the better. FOCUS. Know what you want and stick to the plan. URGENCY. Ready, aim, fire. Go ahead and do it quick. You haven't got all day, you have not a hundred years to spare.

Due credit to the speaker, of course, for his words and his advocacy.


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