The Beginning Of My Financial Journey

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This is a reposting.  The original blog was posted last Nov 2012.

I am a Chemical Engineer by Degree but I have never practiced it.  I started my career in Procter & Gamble (P&G) as a Customer Service Engineer and that started my journey in the different aspects of Supply Chain (from CS to Warehouse to Raw Materials Planning to Production Planning to Demand Planning) and to complete the cycle I even went to join P&G’s Distributor in the Bicol Region as a General Sales Manager Trainee.  I don’t have a Finance degree and I didn’t like Economics in High School and Engineering Economy in College.  Maybe that explains why my finances are in a mess.  I don’t profess to be the subject matter expert (SME) in Finance 101 but a year ago I decided to take control of my financial life and that is when I embarked on my journey.  It is a work in progress and I want to share you some bits and pieces of knowledge I have acquired and hopefully this will inspire you, my dear readers, that if I can do it then you also can do it.

It was in 2009, a friend on a business trip to Singapore decided to extend his trip by a few days so I can bring him around.  The funny thing is, as I was bringing my friend around Singapore he was also showing me places I’ve never been (like the F1 pit stop unused after the F1 race) nor food I’ve never known to be available in the area (like the hotdog stand whose chef was an Ang Moh, in other words a Caucasian).  This friend also slowly opened my eyes.  He did a financial check on me asking me if I had any savings given that I’ve been in Singapore (SG) since 2007.  I told him I didn’t have any savings and I’ve been supporting my family.  He told me proudly that he started the BPI Direct Save-Up account of 1,000 Php per month (the account is set up in such a way that every month, the nominated amount will be automatically deducted from your main account to go to the BPI Direct Save-Up account).  Was thinking to myself that if he can do then I should be able to do it even double the amount.  So when he left to go back to the Philippines, I was researching about the BPI Direct Save-Up account, how it works and how to open an account and after that I opened an account online and printed all the documents for mailing to my mom in the Philippines so she could submit the forms for me.  After almost 2 years of opening the account, I had savings but the interest was so pathetic that I lost hope on continuing it then I received an invite from my close friend here in SG to attend a Financial Coaching Seminar.

I attended IMG’s seminar at a time that I was looking for an avenue for my savings to earn more interest and I learned so many things in that 3 hours seminar.  A million and one things were running in mind and to name a few, how come I never heard about different avenues to do investing, how come not one of my friends talked to me about stock market or mutual funds and how come I never heard about the proper way of handling my finances (from saving to investing).  After attending that seminar, the first two things I did were to do my financial blueprint and to do my dream board.  At that point, I felt HOPE overwhelm me…  Hope of retiring and going home to the Philippines to be with my loved ones…  Hope of achieving my dreams of travelling…  Hope of pursuing my hobby…  Hope of providing for my family…  Hope of helping our less fortunate brothers and sisters…

With this HOPE, this is Ms. Piggy and I will be signing off for now by showing you a glimpse of myself and my goals and I hope you stay tuned for the next update in “Ms. Piggy’s Corner.”

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