You are the multi-millionaire next door. And you probably don’t know it.
We know of Henry Sy and Lucio Tan. But who is Philip Ang? The 3 of them are in Forbes Magazine’s richest list in the Philippines. Henry Sy is worth 5 billion dollars, Lucio Tan is at 2.1 billion dollars while Philip Ang is at the “bottom” of the 40 Forbes Magazine-listed richest Pinoys, worth 50 million dollars. Many probably know that Henry Sy and Lucio Tan own conglomerates.
But little is known about Philip Tan because he’s in the field of mining (with holdings in Taganito Mining and Nickel Asia).It’s safe to say that the 3 gentlemen are of Chinese descent. But that doesn’t automatically make them multi-millionaires (actually, billionaires!). The question is, “how did they do it?” And the next best question would be, “can I do it?” Yes, you can.
To be one, think like one.
The mind is one heck of a powerful engine of humans that if they are just able to tap 10% of its capability, then a lot can be achieved. Your brain is so powerful that it can command the other body parts to do what it tells them to do. Thus, what the mind can conceive, the body can achieve.
Have a multi-millionaire mindset. As my old friend John Calub would say in his seminars, be a “Money-Magnet.” People attract what they want to attract. So first, you’ll have to think and believe that you will be rich. Tell yourself everyday that you will get rich. This is the subject of the book and film titled “The Secret.
When I was little, I knew in my heart that I would someday be a successful entrepreneur of sorts. We weren’t well-off then. But I wanted to have those cool toys my rich classmates had. I had a pair of used penlight batteries as toys way back then (boo-hoo). In my mind, I saw myself as a rich and successful entrepreneur. I had to start somewhere so I practiced. I started when I was in grade 3. I started a small comics rental business after school hours. I sold Choc-nut to classmates and family. I even went around the campus collecting soda bottles to claim “deposit” at the canteen. I eventually graduated to selling magazine subscriptions in high school and jewelry and retailed eggs in college. Today, I have digital media agency, a venture development enterprise and speaking engagements on the side.
Even if you pray daily for financial blessings, but you are not truly convinced that you can have these riches, then you won’t have them. That’s how it works, my friend.
Don’t be afraid to dream.
Never believe when others say,”only in your dreams” that you can achieve and be who you want to be. If you don’t dream, there’s nothing to come true, right? Be concrete and specific on what you want to have and be. Have a Dream Board. Also called a Vision Board or Dashboard, this is a collage of pictures and affirmations of your dreams or visions. Like a dashboard, a dream board is supposed to be some kind of a control panel which is in front of you all the time. It helps direct you towards your destination or goal. Affirmations such as I am Healthy, I am Rich, I am a Pilot, I have a large Farm, etc. are key to having an effective, besides a picturesque, board. Place it somewhere you can see everyday — when you wake up and just before you go to sleep. The Dream Board will help you maintain your focus. I placed a Tagaytay House and Lot in my 2010 Dream Board. I bought a nice property right beside the clubhouse by April.
Stay Away from Negative People
The company you keep defines who you are. Many years ago, I was bent on fulfilling my dreams. I wanted to build my own house as a promise to my wife. In my haste, I didn’t take time to assess the people I dealt with. Their negativities affected my dealings. Eventually I closed all my businesses with them and just pursued my consulting and corporate job. Today, I only keep positive people within my circle. They provide the sunshine despite some storms that come.
Save and Invest Properly.
Put away at least 10% of your net income (after taxes) in banks and financial interests that earn a decent return. A decent return is defined as something you’re comfortable with and not putting too much risk on your savings. There are many financial instruments available besides the basic savings account that only earns 1% interest per year. Ask your bank what they have to offer. There are those bundled savings with “free” insurance, mutual funds, and others tied to the stock market. Of course, you have to calculate and decide the acceptable risk on your part such as purely stock trading. Stay away from forex trading unless you have a real expert to help you out with. Read books and the newspaper for insights. My basic investment instruments are: property (especially with rental opportunities), gold and cash (all kinds of stable currencies like Hong Kong Dollars). If you are an OFW recipient of U.S. Dollars, put some of your money in U.S. Dollar-denominated mutual funds to safeguard your money from erratic exchange rates with the Peso.
If you know of a financial adviser, much better. They are the experts in handling money and making them grow. If you don’t know one or can’t afford one, then be one. Read up on investment subjects. Just make sure they appeal to you and are comfortable with them. Also make sure the types of investments are applicable to your situation or location.
The best investment I would recommend is a business. It’s more long-term and fun. No need to depend on retirement financial plans. If you’re looking for the safest investment haven, buy gold.
Be an Entrepreneur.
Everyone has a knack for business. Only in the Philippines will you find Sari-Sari Stores in almost every street.You have probably noticed food kiosks sprouting almost everywhere commercially possible. There was the Litson Manok, Shawarma, and Zagu phenomena. Today, it’s Double Burger and Scramble.
We just don’t know it, but anyone can sell something. The most basic is selling ourselves. If we can’t sell ourselves to anyone, we won’t have any friends or relationships, right? Besides, everyone has some kind of talent and interest. Discovering what talents and interests we have is the first step in being a successful entrepreneur. Remember that entrepreneurs do not work a day in their lives. They simply do what they love to do — whatever it may be. They simply add a lot of research, hardwork, and faith to what they pursue, and they’re off!
You can be an entrepreneur. Believe it. Work on it.
No one is too old to study. You have to continue learning new things and to keep abreast of technology. Improve on your skills. These are the great enablers in life. If you fall behind, you will miss out on a lot of opportunities.
In 1995, when the Internet was just starting to become commercially applicable, I was blessed to be part of a publishing company that was launching digital versions of its products. We were “forced” to learn this new technology which introduced links to the World Wide Web. Two years later, I was employed as an “expert” in Internet advertising by a travel website that made 25 thousand dollars in banner advertising in its first 3 months of operation. It was surely unheard of in those years, especially when I sold advertising spaces in the Philippines — during the Asian Crisis!
Today, having studied basic web and graphic design, and having been in digital media ever since, many consider me a veteran (not old, huh!). Well, only a few people like Janette Toral (one of the authors of the E-Commerce Law) and my good friend Jovel Cipriano (Pinoydelikasi.com) can claim to be digital media veterans and experts. We have continuously studied trends and have branched out into separate niches: Janette into blogging, Jovel into e-commerce safety, and me into social media and digital marketing consulting.
Don’t be lazy to learn. Learning is freedom.
Be the Millionaire Next Door.
You are a certified millionaire when you have a million pesos in cash stashed somewhere. Whether it’s in the bank or in some financial instrument like mutual funds, as long as it’s cash, then you’re liquid.
When you have earned your first million, keep your head down. Maintain a low profile. Be humble. This attitude keeps you frugal and thus, maintains your liquidity. Of course, you have to enjoy your money, too. Just don’t spend beyond your “investable” means. You can spend from your earnings but not on your principal.
Avoid spending on flashy cars unless you can truly afford it. Cars depreciate in value over time. But if you’re really looking into a worthy automobile, buy a Mercedez Benz. The Benz doesn’t lose its value much over time. Parts are available and don’t cost a fortune. Japanese-made cars like the Honda Civic, CRV or Odyssey, or Toyota Altis are also considered investments based on dependability and availability of parts, without spending top dollar.
One last thing.
If you’re “in the market” for a long-time partner, find someone who will complement you. Find a teammate. I may be a good salesman and business developer but I couldn’t have saved and invested properly without my finance manager and lifetime partner, my Sweetie. I tell her my plans. If she disagrees after much convincing on an investment opportunity, I don’t go for it. Your partner has to be the person who is on-the-outside- looking-in. This gives you a different perspective when finding the right financial instrument, investment or savings. And believe it or not, my Sweetie holds the so-called key to the vault and my ATM (haha). That keeps my hand away from the cookie jar.
I want you to be the next Multi-millionaire Next Door. When you do, share your blessings in whatever way you can. Remember that we are just stewards. We are only passing through. Let us leave this world better than we found it.
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Homerun Nievera is a serial techpreneur, digital marketer and professional speaker.
Apart from managing tech enterprises, Homerun is the publisher of a blogazine network that delivers niche content to its audience.
He also a Certified Distance Educator from the University of the Philippines and has launched Edusentro.com with the objective of bringing free education to under-served areas everywhere.
As a blogger, Homerun writes across various topics but looks into techpreneruship as his main course.
He seeks to help entrepreneurs build their digital presence and make a difference. Follow Homerun on Twitter @bnievera