Dec 14, 2013

My New Life, Manulife

I must admit, I am the NOT the best person to go to when it comes to finances. 

My background: my parents are hard workers so by the time I was in high school, their efforts have paid off and our several small businesses were at its peak. So basically, I get whatever a normal teenage girl would like to have during those days. However, by the time that I was graduating in college everything went down the drain due to mismanagement. Our house, the cars, the stores and real estate assets ended up being sold to pay out business and personal debts. It was hard to swallow and with the whole family's ego bruised we had to start from ground up. My mom passed away right after the whole ordeal and now my dad who is almost in his 60s do not have any pension to fall back on.

As I moved up in the corporate ladder in the IT industry during my early 20s, I somehow relived the life that I once had when it comes to spending. So even if I was starting to earn more, I still lived from pay check to pay check and at times a week short to the next pay check scavenging a few hundred bucks which I might left off somewhere in the pockets of my bags.

But in 2011, when I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior. I then realized that He is Lord of all or nothing at all. He reigns over every aspect of my life including my finances. I had no vices whatsoever like smoking, drinking or drugs but when it comes to money it was a struggle for me to control and be discipline. It did not happen overnight but I continue to pray and pray for God to give me the wisdom to handle and be a good steward of His financial provisions. Being a wife who shares the responsibility of budgeting for the family, my heart aims that at the end of it all, the Lord will say "Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master" just like in the Parable of the Talents.

Money in itself is not evil but the LOVE of money is the ROOT of all evil. I am blessed that our church, Victory or VCF, also encourages us to first and foremost give back to the Lord and teaches us not only Biblical but also practical principles on handling finances. Just to mention, recently we finished our Sunday series: It's Not About the Money and you may listen to these podcast for those preaching.

I know God is steering me in direction where I could take hold of this struggle. It is a slow process but through reading the Bible then other financial literature (books, blogs, videos and even seminars), I am starting to gain more knowledge about it. It is actually been going on for a while but I haven't blog about  it because I still feel inadequate to share my experience with you my beloved readers.

However, before 2013 ended, by God's grace I hit my 3rd financial target so I decided that this is a good year-end post to encourage people like me, especially the younger ones, that you do not need to have hundred thousands to start investing and that time is your ally. Around this season as well is when companies are giving out the employee's bonuses so please do pause before buying that latest smartphone or what-have-yous (I am also techie so I understand what you are going through) and think how you could allocate this additional blessings.

My Top 3 Investment Targets to Financial Freedom
1. Build up the Emergency Fund through a bank savings account
2. Start buying stocks through a trusted trader
3. Get a life insurance

So here I am with Bong Landerito, my Financial Adviser from Manulife whom I met through an officemate. Like most of the Filipino families, he has his own fair share of story to tell when it comes to financial struggle. This became his advocacy because of the the things he learned from his own life experience. Very relaxed and easy to talk, just reached out to him through the contacts below. 

Cheers to my new life with Manulife!

Just a reminder, to do your own research. Have time to reflect on your needs and goals. Explore your means and vehicles to build up your asset. Be cautious on get rich quick scheme and do not rush into things even if someone else is pressuring or persuading you to do so. This is your hard-earned money so take as much time as you need to fully understand even the terms in the fine print. 

A good person leaves an inheritance for their children's children, 
but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous.

[NIV] Proverbs 13:22

Sir Chief, Richard Yap

Sources: Some images came from their Facebook Page