Most Filipino’s consider themselves poor. For some unknown reason there isn’t always enough. Money always is depleted. Debt issues are always growing. Savings are close to impossible and a whole lot of people (seem to enjoy) calling the Philippines a poor country.
This is not a holier than thou sermon to say how blessed and fortunate you are. (It’s not such a bad idea to think of yourself along those lines instead.) Preaching makes me feel sick. I also admit doing all those things before. At times I feel helpless when I see children and (worse) old ladies begging for alms on the street. Situations like that make me cry inside.
I propose a solution that can not only help people but help yourself as well. Here it is:
When you give, (hopefully without expectation of anything in return) you benefit more because you put yourself in the driver seat of your life. It makes you feel great and puts things in perspective that you can do something about the situation.
Here’s the practical application:
How do you save money if you have no budget for savings?
Pull out 20 bucks and go to the nearest bakery and purchase pandesal worth 20 bucks.
Remember that kid or old lady you’ve been waiting to give help to?
No I’m not going to ask you to let them live in your house and educate them to find them a job.
The pandesal bag in your hand can help them.
When you do it everyday for as often as you can you are making room on your budget to do great things.
Key word is to make room.
For about five years I couldn’t save any money and it doesn’t matter if I made six thousand pesos per month or a six figure income in a month. A couple of years ago I tried doing the opposite of wanting to keep money for myself. I followed church advice to give 10% of my income. For a person like me who makes about the same as everyone else (which I think is pretty small) I did it anyway.
Doing good never feels pleasant at the start. Guess what? Doing so made me realize that I can live on less.
Hello eye opener! I spent less than I earned to give out my cash and it looks like I can spend a little less more to start savings for my goal.
A few weeks of saving a few hundred bucks a week later turned to saving a few grand later.
Guess what? I learned to save.
Care to try it out?
Give out a bit of cash to help someone out? A kid or old lady from the street without enough to eat? A bit of cash to help your church? Form a habit to do it on a regular basis. Spend less and start saving a bit of cash for yourself as you realize that you can live on less.
I hope the one in the mirror makes the change.Written on September 24th, 2011 by Kevin Olega