Here’s an insightful post from Allan from The Philippines. He shares with us his story about growing up poor and working his way up. It’s always great to read about international perspectives. Hope you enjoy!
They say we are creatures of habit. This is especially true when it comes to money. When the going gets tough, it is easier to resort to what’s comfortable. When that happens, your own money habits take over. The only question is – will your money habits get you through and make you rich?
Money Habit # 1 – Playing with money
Learning my money habits started when I was still a young kid playing outside the house on a sunny afternoon. The first money habit I learned was playing with money. Yes, literally. But not with actual money. My friends and I would play games betting on carefully folded cigarette packs looking like play money. A red Marlboro is worth PhP 50 (US 1$). A green local brand “Champion” cigarette is PhP 5 (10 cents). A Philip Morris cigarette pack is worth PhP 100 (US $2).
It was all play money then. And it was easy to get. I only need to wait for my father to finish his cigarette pack and I’d be on my way to earning my (play) money for the day. Sometimes, we even played with coins, taking turns and rolling them on the floor like a dice. Playing with money was fun!
Somewhere between playing with other kids and being conscious on what’s cool, I learned that money can buy me things. But since we were poor, I had to make do with my worn out clothes. After some time I’ve already outgrown it so much, I already looked like Winnie the Pooh.
It’s not so much about other kids having better clothes. It was more because I was not able to play outside as much as the other kids. My mother would always remind me to do my house chores. Wanting to go out and play instead, I would reason out “how come the other kids are not doing any chores?” To which my mom lovingly responded,
“Because we are not like them. They can do whatever they want because they are rich. We are poor. ”
That was the first time I realized we were different from other people. We were poor. I began to notice how worn out my clothes and shoes are. I remember even going to school with no shoes on.
That’s one lesson I took to heart. If you don’t have money, you are poor. If you are poor, you need to work to have some money.
Money Habit # 2 – Working for money Read more…