You may ask, how long have you been doing business? Were you successful the first time?
As I’ve mentioned probably for a number of times already, I never imagined myself being a full-time business owner, or at least not this soon. I envisioned myself climbing up the corporate ladder until I enjoy the perks of being part of the top management. It was my husband who cannot keep still in the corporate world and embraced a number of opportunities presented to him. It was a challenge for both us because we have different risk appetites. Those businesses failed btw. I’ve seen loopholes, my husband gained wisdom.
We realized, as husband and wife, that if we wanted to be business partners, we have to meet somewhere. It took a while for us to finally accept our differences and use it as our advantage. Being a control-freak, analytic and introvert, I have to accept where my risk-taker husband is coming from. The most effective medium that influenced my sudden change of heart is by reading business books. I tell you, I matured in months. A couple of reading, but mostly experience has taught my husband on the other hand to sometimes step-back before making a big decision. He lead the company, I prepared the path.
We’ve been doing business for a decade already. And no, we were not successful the first time.
As they say, “Fail Fast and Fail Forward.”
To Be Continued…
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Transitioning from an SEO company to a Digital Marketing Company is a leap of faith. But we have no choice. I am just glad that my visionary husband led our team to that transition before it’s too late. And God is pushing us even further, He’s preparing us to transfer to a bigger office.
On my end, this means that I can no longer hold on to my excuse of not having enough Marketing skills and knowledge. I’ve read a couple of Marketing books though, but I don’t think that’s enough. I have to have the right training and experience to do Marketing.
Fast forward to now, I am trying to establish a process for creating a digital marketing strategy while I am helping the company create our Marketing Plan. Clap clap clap…
It took a lot of courage from me to start from scratch and embrace the idea that I have to do Marketing as well. It’s a long way for me though, I have to stretch myself even more.
As they say, “It’s better not to know things sometimes” because now I am thinking about how to grow the company which used to be solely my husband’s concern. Hah!
Seriously, looking at the growth-share matrix, I am seeing our company as a “Star”. (A star is a unit with high market share in a fast-growing industry. Stars require high funding to fight competitions and maintain a growth rate.) This means that we need to have a “Cash Cow” business unit that will fund this Star.
What could our cash cow be if our main business is a Star?
To Be Continued…
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So where am I now on my financial journey?
I used to think that I’m already at my peak. From an employee trying to make ends meet, to a business owner of a Digital Marketing Company, Coffeeshop and an Independent Distributor of Royale. My family and I are definitely enjoying a lot of things we couldn’t afford before. But are we having an easy life? Hell no! If we stop what we’re doing right now, we definitely won’t last.
That made me realize that I may have climbed a few steps up, I am still far from my peak.
For years I’ve done a lot of different things for the business. I managed things where I’m good at; managing processes, handling the financial, doing accounting, admin, planning, strategizing and all those boring stuff lol. I avoided the marketing side because I told myself I don’t have the skills. Managing business has taught me a lot. It’s like opening another eye that has always been closed before. (Hopefully not the third eye lol)
And I didn’t stop there, I fed myself more knowledge and information through reading, letting my eyes open wider.
I realized, instead of focusing only on my strengths, why not work on my weaknesses as well. I cannot continue doing what I am doing now if I wanted to create big things. I have to do more, be more. This is getting more exciting.
Btw, you may ask why am I sharing this journey. Well, the least thing I can do now is to share my positivity as I tell my Rugs-to-getting-there story until I finally become RICH. Who knows I might inspire someone to start their journey as well.
Picture taken from the internet
To Be Continued…
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I have always been a simple person. “White shirt and jeans with minimal accessories” is my favorite outfit. I don’t easily get fascinated with material things. I don’t have problem delaying gratification. I buy expensive things because I have to, for business’ sake, not to pacify myself or impress another.
This must be the reason why my husband asked me recently, “Why do you want to be a multi-millionaire?” He just blurted it out while we were discussing Strategic Plan for my health and wellness business. My initial answer was, “I want to have financial freedom.” And he asked again, “Why?” (My husband can be annoying sometimes lol). It took me a while to answer. I am a thinker, I probed deeper. My initial answer would have been, “I wanted to travel anytime I want, business class plus five star hotel and bring everyone along. I want to fund a bigger office to hire more people and provide them the best compensation one could imagine. I want to ensure good future for my kids. I don’t want to worry about growing old.” This time it was me asking myself, “Why?” (Can you imagine the impatience building up on my husband as he waits for my reply? Good thing he has his phone with him and decided to be online while waiting) I let the question die.
But deep inside, the question lingered for days until I realized that my husband asked me a wrong question.
“Being a multi-millionaire is not my objective, but creating something BIG is.”
To Be Continued…
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Time is passing by so quickly don’t you think?
I am starting to get scared whenever I look at our kids, they’ve grown so fast. Especially Marcus. I am just glad he doesn’t go out too often (compared to teens his age), but he’s starting to ask permission already. He has someone who he constantly talks to on the phone. Don’t worry I’m ok (kaya pa), just as long as he spends for his celphone load and he sleeps on time. I don’t have problem with his grades anyway. Zach and Lia, though I can still tell them what to do, are no longer babies as well. Zach even tells me, “Ok, you don’t need to shout” whenever he talks a lot and do not listen to what I say.
One night Gary asked me, out of nowhere, if I really don’t want to have another child. Maybe, he misses a baby in the house. Or like me, he’s starting to feel scared because we can no longer deny the fact that our kids are big already. Btw, my answer to Gary is still no to having another child, I cannot go through the same process anymore. Also, I wanted to have more time with him. To take care of all his needs (his love language is service) that I cannot possibly provide now because I have 3 kids to attend to. I am planning to start having vacation for the two of us starting next year, or maybe sooner, who knows?
I also plan to make more vacations as a family. It doesn’t have to be out of the country all the time, but if only we can afford it we’ll do it. We can go to Baguio, Tagaytay or even in Nuvali where we can use the club house already. I want to create situations wherein my kids don’t have the choice but to spend time with their siblings and their (old, emo and senti) parents. lol
Like 2 weeks ago, we spent our long-weekend in Baguio. Btw, we usually stay at Azalea Residences Hotel because we love how spacious their rooms are and how convenient their location is. We just ate and slept the whole time. This time we tried 2 of the best restaurants in Baguio, Cafe by the Ruins and Forest House, on top of Hill Station which has always been part of our every Baguio trip.
Here you can see the kids’ bed (where Marcus is currently lying down). Gary is watching TV (he prefers to stand when he’s tired of sitting down). Zach, Lia and I are on the dining table. I am having a bottle of beer, Zach is reading the Hotel’s Bible (kulang na lang basahan ako ng verse at i-pray over hehe) and Lia is playing puzzle. On our back is the kitchen where you can find the ref, stove, microwave, sink and cabinets of utensils. On Zach’s right is the bathroom and another room for Gary and myself (though Lia still prefers to sleep with us) which has another TV and bigger closet.
Picture of our babies-no-more while buying vegetables and Baguio sweets at Strawberry Farm.
I hope we can make many more memories like this.
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After months of anticipation, you then find yourself asking this question, “Where did my bonus go?”
Don’t look at me, look at those “well-deserved” gifts you bought for yourself and/or your loved ones. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with it. You work hard to play hard right?
But don’t you think you deserve something better than all the material things you have now? Don’t you want to buy things much better than what you can afford? Won’t you be able to provide more to others if you have more to give? Don’t you want to be your own boss the soonest possible time?
Then why not be one-step ahead of where you were last year.
Invest your money. (You can invest for as low as 15k below)
Or save it so that when a business opportunity arrives, “I don’t have extra money to invest” excuse won’t be necessary.
Think about it.
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I have so much to be thankful for this year. So much that I almost gave up my goal of seeing at least one country per year starting next year just because I thought I’ve had enough and I wouldn’t mind traveling again after a couple of years.
But circumstances made me realize that I should not give up on that goal. Of course it will always depend on the budget but I realized that the least thing I can do is to hold on to that dream. My family and I deserve that time alone. It won’t be long ’till our kids are all grown up and have their own life. I have to maximize the time that they are still dependent on us, that we can still bring them anywhere we go (whether they like it or not lol). And why would I give up on one of the things I love doing the most?
So where do I want to be next year? Honestly, I want to go back to Europe. But I would need a miracle to make it happen that soon. I dream of seeing other places in Italy. I want to go to Spain, Amsterdam and Greece.
It would be more realistic to see Malaysia or any countries in Asia.
Or maybe we can start considering Australia.
Also, I want to bring our employees to Cambodia, Vietnam and/or Thailand. I wouldn’t want to try countries with Visa yet. But yes, we hope we can provide another travel incentive next year.
Nothing is definite. I’m not even sure if we can afford another trip next year. But I made up my mind…
I am holding on to that DREAM.
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I always get this question. And every time, there is a lag between the question and my answer. I struggle for words to explain that I look for school that would meet each of my child’s needs and not the other way around. I’ve learned my lesson already and I don’t want to make the same mistake twice.
My eldest son Marcus was diagnosed with mild ADHD. He doesn’t have learning disability, actually his IQ is above average and he is as normal as any normal child can be, except for one, he needs more attention. He would always get a bad remark for his behavior because of that. His psychologist recommended that I enrol him in a school with small class size (15 students or below) so that he can get the right attention that he needs. BUT because I didn’t want Marcus to feel that he has special needs, I still enrolled him in a traditional school. I tried to talk to the guidance councilor and adviser to make sure that his needs are addressed. They made promises that they were not able to keep. When these traditional schools gave up on Marcus, namely Don Bosco Makati and San Agustin, I was forced to look for another school. Blessing in disguise, Australian International School was referred to me. Since Day 1, they did not disappoint me. Now, Marcus is always on the top 5 (among 15 kids with different nationalities), he has proven his leadership skills, getting (almost) straight As, varsity player in basketball and learning to play the piano and bass with minimum supervision. Opportunities that for sure won’t be presented to him from schools he came from.
My second child, Zach, goes to San Agustin. He fits the traditional school discipline. I honestly would want to pull him out from that school because the number of students there per class is so big already (almost 50), not to mention how they treated my eldest son. But so far Zach is doing well. He has good grades, speaks well and is confident of himself. I don’t want to stop his momentum by transferring him to another school. Maybe in highschool. So what I do now is I enrol him to other activities such as kumon and swimming. I also tell him to read books about important things not usually taught in school, like financial education.
My only daughter goes to Assumption College. She was enroled in a progressive school last year. There was great improvement in her in terms of social skills and independence but I transferred her this year because in terms of acads, they’re not much of a hurry. That scares me because I don’t want Lia to be left behind. Also I want her to get values and religious education. In Assumption, there are 16 students in her class (compared to 20+ in CSA for Kindergarten). I am still observing Lia’s progress, but so far so good. I will also enrol her to special class on top of Kumon.
There. I believe that I am in the best position to identify what my children’s needs are in terms of learning and development. I don’t want to force my kids in an environment which cannot provide my children’s best interest. So help me God.
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I grew up believing that I need to finish school (with flying colors) to be employed by a company that could offer me a lucrative job. I guess there’s nothing wrong with that ONLY if it was presented to me together with other options. The scary part of my growing up years (I realized) is that it NEVER occurred to me that I can come up with my own business and be an employer years (even decades) before retirement age. I had a lot of misconceptions with regards to owning a business. I used to think that all you need is money to be able to start one. So you picture yourself getting your retirement fund and finally making your dream of being your own employer come true. Surprisingly, money is actually the least of your worries. Are you with me?
Let’s go back to the picture. So you consulted friends, relatives and successful business owners on what kind of business to invest on (missing the idea of even asking how did they actually became successful). You are eyeing the product/service, not the business system itself. If you’re lucky and the business is a hit (for now), you reached ROI in no time. Unfortunately, lack of entrepreneurial experience slowly dragged your business down. You then found yourself closing the business and saying goodbye to the last money you have.
What to do?
1. Know yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? Are you a visionary who loves to exploit new possibilities and has the passion for creating better future or an implementer who efficiently completes current work, solves immediate problem and into details? This is important so that you will know who to partner with or what type of people to hire eventually.
2. Have an investment fund where you can put money on a regular basis. If there is a need to make a loan, go for it. Just as long as financial feasibility has been established addressing cash flow and ROI.
3. Educate yourself through school, seminars, training and/or books.
4. Experience it. Don’t wait for retirement age, please! Don’t be scared to fail. And fail as many times as you can. Failing is worth all the money you lost. When you are losing during your salad days, you have all the time and energy to recuperate and try again (this time as a better business owner). My suggestion just to make the ball rolling? Join those networking businesses. Why? Because they offer FREE seminars and training on how to market and sell, you meet seasoned entrepreneurs and of course the hands-on training of trying to do it yourself.
5. Be humble enough to admit that you need more than yourself to succeed.
Now that I have 3 growing children, I try to educate them financially as much as I can. I tell them that life is not all about winning, what’s important is being a better person after every failure.
More so, I am opening their eyes to a lot of BETTER options.
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