Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Be Debt Free

Have you ever said, "Kasusweldo pa lang, ubos na!” Or worst, "Wala pang sweldo, ubos na!”
If you have, you are not alone. Millions of Filipinos cry this out every payday.
Once, a man invited me for coffee and asked for advice. At one point in our conversation, he ranted about his financial state. His major complaint was about how low his salary is.
He said in jest, "Ang sweldo ko parang sibuyas. Pag hinahati ko na sa gastusin, naiiyak na ako.”
I advised him to lower his expenses. He answered, "Paano magbabawas ng gastos, eh, sagad na talaga? Kulang talaga eh.” (How can I reduce my expenses? We are spending the barest minimum already… but what I get is just not enough.”)
To answer, I brought out a pen and gave him a clean table napkin and said, "I will ask you questions and if you answer yes to any one of them, just write 'Yes' on the tissue paper.”
He obliged. And so I started asking him the following:
Do you drink soft drinks?
Do you smoke?
Do you eat merienda?
Are your kids studying in an expensive school?
Do you buy branded clothes?
Do you have more than one cell phone?
To my thinking, if he answers even one 'Yes' to any of these questions, I would tell him that he had not exhausted all means to lower his spending.  He had not yet reached absolute bottom. If, however, he never wrote 'Yes' to any of my questions. I have a 'sure yes' question: "Did you pay for my coffee?” He will definitely answer, 'Yes.'
If you are like my friend who can answer 'Yes' to any of my questions then — hindi ka pa sagad!
You just need to manage your finances better.
May your dreams come true,
Bo Sanchez
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