When I was I kid, I learned to earn my first income at doing different errands with other people in our neighborhood. From elementary to high school, I learned to earn money in doing many things like babysitting, managing family business, selling school supplies at school, and so on. My income continues to be bigger as I work in a fast food chain for almost 3 years while studying in college. I also entered freelance work after graduation and get my first teaching job as I strive to earn more money.
All of my life is centered on earning money. From childhood till’ now, I was mold to be “business-minded” in my engagements. But none of these things taught me about “Financial Literacy.” Now that I’m 26 years old with unstable earning and savings in the bank, I learned that working alone will not take my money further. I may be earning, but without savings or a plan to prepare for my future goals, the money I have will only serve as a “small tool.”
With all the training and books I read as an adult, I learned that I neglected the fact that I need to be diligent and responsible for handling my finances. But in reality, these learnings will be just mere words to me, until I learned how to appreciate and apply them to what it is.
Financial Literacy is something I don’t really care that much. When I hear people talked about money, it made me feel uncomfortable because it is a sensitive topic for me. Until…
1. I learned the REAL purpose of it
Financial Literacy, in general, is all about WISE EDUCATION IN HANDLING MONEY AND POSSESSION. Technically, fake news taught me that financial literacy is all about “sheer investments” and “money market,” which is not the real case. Financial literacy made me realized that it’s merely about “money management” and how to make money work well with everyone. Rich or poor, having 100k/month salary or 500 pesos in your wallet, you have to find purpose to the money you have. Because more than just having that money, you have to do something with it, with a proper money management skills.
2. It should have applied to my family
When my father died, one of the struggles I’d been through is entering college. I want to enroll at University of Santo Tomas and take an Education course. But being financially broke because of the death of my dad makes that goal into an end. My mom and dad could have made an emergency fund or savings at the bank to stop these financial problems. But we were not taught by our parents nor our teachers to prepare financially for disaster.
So the sad thing is this, financial literacy will only be an information to many people unless a loved one is dying in a critical illness and you don’t have any money to send them to hospital. I could have entered at UST if my parents saved for it. But now as an adult, I believe there’s more that we can do to not let the financial mistakes of our parents pass on to us. Make money management a serious matter, because every financial decision can affect you and the next generations to come.
3. I learned to START taking the FIRST STEP FORWARD
With all the stress I had when it comes to earning money as a teacher, a friend of mine from church taught me a financial lesson that might save me today and future milestones: GET AN INSURANCE. Once again, fake information taught me that “all insurance is all scam.” But when the REAL information sets in, I learned that insurance is what WE REALLY NEED to protect us in any storms and conflicts in life that involves money. Now, having my first insurance policy, I learned that sustaining a “money protection plan” for me and my family can teach me many things when it comes to money. Being tight to my monthly budget and teaching myself a proper money discipline is hard at first, but it’s all worth it. Knowing that this money I’m saving will help me big time in reaching Financial Freedom.
Taking small steps towards financial freedom is never easy, but it’s worth it. And it’s not applied in insurance alone. There are many ways that you can do to make money management possible like mutual funds, income protection fund, and so on. You just have to get what is suitable for you to make your financial freedom possible.
Looking back at my previous money decisions, I learned how the learnings I have about financial literacy today could have saved my past money mistakes. I could have a new car and travel to different destinations I learned these principles earlier. But today is a new day to start new with my financial goals. Make every good steps count and make the most out of my money and time. As for you, you don’t need to experience what I’d been through for you to start saving and investing for your future. Talk to a reliable financial advisor now and choose to live brighter for today and your future goals ahead towards #FinancialFreedom.