What is the most valuable money lesson you’ve learned growing up? As a child, I have read various stories that money doesn’t grow on trees. Of course, they don’t! Until I grew up, graduated, and learned a bit about financial management and accounting. Still, authors and financial gurus keep reminding people that money doesn’t grow on trees.
As an employee trying to earn a living and facing the realities of life, I now realize what those words meant. Money is elusive. You need to search for it and grow it. It doesn’t magically appear in our pockets just because we wish for it.
Money is said to be a good servant but a terrible boss. Money can either make or break you. Relationships are either forged to strength or forced to fail because of money. The number one cause of disagreements in marriage remains to be finance-related.Money is said to be a good servant but a terrible boss. Money can either make or break you. Relationships are either forged to strength or forced to fail because of money. Click To Tweet
As the family’s breadwinner, I have learned several money lessons. I want to share some in this blog.
The Value of Saving – the Primary Money Lesson
During this pandemic, I am very much thankful for the wisdom and discipline God has given me to save pre-pandemic. I habitually put coins in my piggy bank to challenge myself. I have piggy banks for 1-Peso, 5-Peso, and 10-Peso coins. I get excited whenever I try to carry my piggy banks as they accumulate weight. As a personal challenge, I also have a savings envelope for 50-Peso and 200-Peso bills. I have learned that in social media. The challenge is to save every 50-Peso and 200-Peso you receive and treat them as non-existent or as an outright expense. But whatever or however you want to keep, the bottom line is to “save for the rainy days.” This is the most basic money lesson. My coins and savings helped us through our financial emergencies.The bottom line is to "save for the rainy days." This is the most basic money lesson. Click To Tweet
The Value of Restraint
This point is about making unnecessary purchases. Before making major purchases, I have learned to think twice or even more times than usual. There was a time before buying a new cellphone, and I even listed the pros and cons of acquiring it, my budget, and the reviews available in the market for the said product. I do this to avoid making a rushed decision and regretting it later. I even follow this rule:
- If you want to buy it, try to have a week at least to think it through.
- If the desire intensifies and the need is justified, buy it.
- If you forget your appetite and the urge subsides, you don’t need it.
Restrain yourself. Don’t buy on impulse. But I have a confession to make. Regarding books, I find it hard not to be impulsive.
The Value of Return on Investment
I also have this principle: everything I spend my money on must return somehow. When it comes to essentials, of course, its return is in the form of sustenance and healthy life. But some purchases have to add value: when I buy a new laptop, it needs to bring in profit. I have to use it for business or side hustles; when I buy a new phone, I need to use it to increase my reach on my website or social media pages. I need to maximize its utility value. Even when I go to the movies and enjoy the film, I try to write a blog out of it so my disbursement will convert to website traffic. It may sound too rigid and not-so-fun, but I enjoy doing it.
I still have other money lessons to add to the list, such as the value of giving and tithing, budgeting skills, investing in yourself, and making personal financial ledgers, but I guess it calls for a separate blog post. For now, I want to tell you that it doesn’t matter how much we earn. What matters more is how we treat the money that comes in and out of our pockets. I’m not rich and don’t have an outstanding portfolio either. But the things I’ve mentioned helped me and are continually helping me to enjoy every bit of blessing that goes into my lap.
And I hope that someday, I will become financially free to be able to bless others as well. Money doesn’t grow on trees. It grows on teachable and capable hands.
How about you? Share your most important money lesson in the comment section below!