Baby Steps to Financial Riches Series: Part 2 – Taking The First Step

Last week, I had the priviledge to chat with some new friends of mine who asked to meet up with me over coffee so I can share some ideas with them.  I really enjoyed our conversation, and I was able to share with them my story on how I started awakening to the financial opportunities around me.

It was way back 2005 when I first read the book Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.  I remember I was buried in credit card debt back then.  When I read the book, it was as if a new world was opening up in front of my eyes, a world I never knew existed.  All I knew before that time, was I had to have a job in order for me to earn money.  I didn’t have a clue that you can actually make money without having a job.

The book opened me to the world of business.  I thought business was only for those of my friends who are great at sales or an extrovert. Not for a shy-type, introvert, silent kid like me. I thought, you had to have a lot of money before you can go and open your business.  I thought only the greedy, cunning, and materialistic individuals they call "filthy rich" are interested in owning a business.  I thought you had to be all these things before you can open your business.  I had all these assumptions in my head that were simply blown away after reading that book.  For once, it seemed like the world of business was so simple, someone like me can actually do it.  That experience gave me confidence to explore the world of business even more.

Because my mind was already opened about business after reading that book, I was always asking myself, what’s next? What can I do to get the experience I need?  What can I do so that I can learn more about business and investing?  The rich dad poor dad book mentioned about a board game called cashflow 101.  I searched for the game board and found out it’s worth P10,000 when converted from US Dollar to Philippine Peso.  I was not prepared to pay something of that amount, especially that I don’t know if it was worth it or not. 

One time, while I was searching one of the business forums, I came upon a cashflow 101 workshop where you only had to pay P800 for a chance to play the game.  I quickly reserved a spot in the workshop, paid for my dues on the event itself, and voila! I was there! I didn’t know anyone. I mustered enough courage to go and try it out.  I enjoyed it so much, two of those friends who were sitting in my table then, I did business with eventually.  One is now my long time insurance agent.  The other one was the one who introduced me to my first network marketing company. 

The first time I joined a network marketing company, I was desperate.  I needed money to pay for my credit card debts.  Whenever I invited a friend in, all I was thinking about during the whole presentation is for my friend to join me in my network marketing business because I NEED MONEY…I didn’t know or even bother to find out what my friend actually needed or if it’s something that they actually would want to do.  Needless to say, nobody joined me except my mom and a few friends/relatives simply because they couldn’t say no to me.  I didn’t feel good about it at all.  Worse, I didn’t feel like I was proud of what I was doing.  I felt like I was deceiving my friends into joining me in my new venture…I was trying to do everything, even going against my own values simply because I wanted to make money.  In the end, the constant battle within myself was simply too much to bear.  I failed.

Good thing, it was around that same time I was assigned to the US for a 6-months stint with my company.  It was the reason I was looking for not to pursue my network marketing business any longer.  Now, I had an excuse. 

I got lucky during my assignment to the US, I was able to earn enough to pay off my credit card debt.  I also took serious notice about my finances and started saving through our company’s savings and loans association. It came to a point that when I resigned from the company after almost 5 years, that money saved actually reached 6 figures.

But while I was able to save up some of my money after being promoted almost every year in my company, something was still missing.  I still couldn’t afford to marry my then girlfriend (now my wife).  I wanted to get married in a year, but when I found out how much it costs to get married, I was shocked! Assuming I get promoted every year, it would still take me at least 5 to 10 years! I realized I cannot rely on my job alone to achieve my goal.  At the same time, I now understood why many Filipinos get married late.  They simply don’t have enough money. 

I had only one goal in my mind.  Get married in a year.  After thinking about it day and night, I came to only one conclusion. The only way that I can get what I want, to earn enough money in one year to get married, is to go abroad. 

I knew some friends who went abroad a few years back and became successful in their careers.  Realizing the HUGE potential, I quit my job and went on to become an IT consultant in a huge multinational financial services company based in Malaysia. 

True enough, my wife and I were able to get married one year after.  Looking back, I now realize the HUGE RISK that I went through, giving up a promising career, starting out at the bottom and proving my worth to a new set of customers once again.  If only I knew what I know now, I would not have taken the same risk.  Why? Because now, I know another way to achieve the same goal. 

In fact, I’ve seen it happen for an inspiring couple I’ve had a chance to mentor. RJ & Jacq De Lara achieved a similar dream of getting married without having to go abroad, and WITHOUT asking any cent from their parents.  RJ & Jacq are your typical employees from big companies involved in energy development like oil & electricity generation.  But they had a dream, and with much dedication, exploring other opportunities outside of their current job, they managed to get their dream wedding in only a year.  Here’s a video of them together. 

Rj+Jacq (04.21.12) from ONE LOVE on Vimeo.

Looking back, what I saw in RJ & Jacq’s eyes were the determination to make their dreams happen.  I knew they were afraid, as I have been when I started looking for opportunities around me.  But they too suspended their disbeliefs, just like me.  With enough courage, they took the first step.  Learned along the way, built their confidence to continue going after their dreams.  I’m very proud of them, not only for the goal that they’ve achieved, but also for the person that they have become in order to get that goal.

I hope their story inspire you to go on pursuing your own dreams.

P.S. If you’re curious to meet RJ & Jacq and find out exactly how they were able to do it, CLICK HERE to email me. Or visit and add them as friends in facebook @ RJ De Lara and Jacq De Lara.  Just message them to let them know that you knew them from reading my blog  Apologies if it may take some time for me to get back to you when you send me an email because of the many inquiries I receive each day.  If you don’t get a response from me within 48 hours, please do send me a follow up note, as I might have missed it or got buried in my inbox. Have a great day ahead! 🙂  

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  1. When I was young, I always wanted to follow in the steps of my parents and become traders. I guess that dream has always come some naturally to me that, without much effort or second thought, I became one!

  2. My mom has been working for 30 years under an organization and she got a lot of money from her retirement but sad to say that money would just take about 1 year to produce with doing business.

    Now I’m a graduate, she wants me to do the same thing. If I’d do that, I’d be working unhappily for 30 years too. So I insisted that we use her money to build a business venture to earn good money on a faster way.

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