Happy September! The berrr months has finally arrived, but although we tend to end the annual calendar year in the Philippines with cold weather especially in Baguio and in the high mountains of Mountain Province, let’s not end the year with frozen wallets or bank accounts.
119 days, or 17 weeks, or four months more to go before we will again say hello to another year. Excited aren’t we? But before this year ends, I would like to ask you again of what you have been doing to unfreeze your finances and finally end a year with warmer wallets or bank accounts.
Although it’s not a good idea to rush, you still can do more in the remaining 119 days of 2016. If you still haven’t started anything yet to improve the financial aspect of your life or if you are stuck and cannot find a better way to move on, keep reading because I will share with you 5 doable steps to finally start your journey to a financially independent future.
1.Segregate a part of your salary for the 4 remaining months of this year
Put it first in an envelope or a jar or a box. Put say 3%, 5%, 10% of your monthly salary.
When I went home a month ago, I taught my friend to do the same and I was glad to hear that she added another 300 Pesos in her envelope when she received her salary recently.
Maliit, yes, but you are building a habit here. A habit of segregating your savings first before you start spending your sweldo.
2.Open a bank account
Putting your money in an envelope, a bottle or a box is a good idea. Putting in extra barya into your Piggy banks (alkansya) is also great but usually when the piggy banks are full, or you have accumulated bigger amount of money in your envelope, what do you do? You spend it.
How about instead of spending it, deposit it to your savings accounts. This is also to secure your money from thieves and from yourself as well (haha).
Christmas parties will be scheduled one after the other. Do you know that some already started holding Christmas parties in August? Do you really need to attend all these parties?
Noche Buena, Media noche are again the big events that are waiting ahead of us at the end of the year. Of course, kasabay ng celebration is money spending. So, to avoid too much spending you should plan where to celebrate, what food to prepare, what gifts to give.
Do you know that many ask for a loan or spend all their year-end bonus para lang mairaos ang Pasko and Bagong Taon? Then, what happens next? They will start another year empty handed because they have spent all their money for the parties.
By planning ahead you will have a chance to balance your spending and to remind your self to segregate an amount for your savings.
4.Read at least 2 books on personal finance
3 years ago, I was financially illiterate. I finished college, I teach kids at school, I earn my own money but then I didn’t know how to manage my money. So what happened then? I spent money on things that I shouldn’t be buying in the first place. I borrowed money that I’m still paying it off as of today. My bank account was totally empty.
Until one day, out of boredom when I was at the airport waiting for my boarding time, I went around the small National Bookstore stall. Then a book entitled Pera Mo, Palaguin Mo by Francisco Colayco caught my attention. And that’s the beginning of my journey to financial independence.
Then, I keep meeting great people through their books. Bo Sanchez, Robert Kiyosaki, Warren Buffet. I even read the book, Kakasweldo Mo Lang Wala Na, and now I’m learning from Fitz Gerald Villafuerte through his book Ready to be Rich.
The bottom line of it is by reading personal finance books, you are already beginning to invest on yourself. You are starting to change the way you think about money. And when you have created a new mindset about money and getting rich, believe me, it will positively affect your financial life. Why? Because people’s mind is powerful.
Are books expensive? Yes they can cost you a bit more but you can sacrifice 1 McDonald meal or 1 Starbucks cup of Mocha to buy a more valuable tool to your financial progress. And there are also free ebooks available to start with. Like our free ebook How Did I Enter into the Philippine Stock Market on our website (hehe), and Bo Sanchez’ ebook My Maid Invest in the Stock Market, and there are many more.
Before the year ends, challenge yourself to start investing. Once you receive your bonus, don’t spend them all or r if you can, don’t spend them at all. Invest it. There are many legitimate investment instrument that you can choose from.
In the Philippines, there are Mutual Fund, VUL, UITF, and Stock Market. And you know what? You can start investing in the Philippine stock market with your 5000 Pesos.
Be wary about scrupulous investments that are too good to be true, though.
If you are planning to use your bonus to buy a new smart phone, or use it for the down payment of a new flat screen TV, or for the down payment of a new motorcycle, why not use it to buy assets and not all those liabilities. Because you know what? You can buy all the smart phones you want, and pay all the flat screen television sets or that motorcycle in full in the future once your money has already grown. The point is, start thinking of a long term gratification.
If you think of other ways to improve your financial life before this year ends, please share it to us on the comment box below.
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