Last week, I met a man named Mang Ramon (not his real name) in his late sixties and maintenance personnel in a private school in Quezon City. I had a chance to interview him as I waited for the school directress to whom I have a presentation with.
Jacqui: Hi Mang Ramon! At your age, why are you still working? Don’t you have plans of enjoying what you have saved and invested early in your life?
Mang Ramon: Jacqui, I wish I could but I made the biggest mistake of my life for not preparing for my own future. That’s why until now I am working and I don’t know when this going to end.
Jacqui: But I heard that you had a good paying job that you have worked for years, Mang Ramon. And how come you made what you called “biggest mistake” in your life?
Mang Ramon: Because I never invested. I only saved a little but it’s gone now. Yes, it’s true that I have worked for a good company with a good pay before. During my early working years, I always say to myself, “I can’t invest now. I’m just starting in my work and in life. I’m entitled to have fun while I’m young and there’s plenty of time. I don’t need to hurry.” But when I got married and got kids, this is the most expensive period of a man’s life—pay expenses and kids’ tuition fees. I can’t even save a peso. The retirement fund that I received from my company is not enough to pay for our daily expenses now.
I’m thankful to my kids because they are kind to give me money but I don’t want to bother them that’s why I am still working. And I can’t buy my own medicines. Jacqui, I wish I had started investing 40 years ago when my savings are little but it’s too late now. I am hoping that my story will save other people from making the same biggest mistake of my life.
The right time to save and invest is now as you commit yourself to invest in your future before your present.