Your Health Is Your Greatest Wealth

One of the biggest expenses you can have in this life is when you or your loved one’s health fails. 

I remember when my son was born and he had a heart complication. He was about to be operated on and while talking to the doctor, my father-in-law asked him how much it would cost for them to operate on my baby. The doctor estimated it to cost around Php700,000, and that was not even guaranteed to work 100%. The doctor was honest enough to say it had a 70-30 chance of success. When you’re in that kind of situation where you are asked to take a chance, the obvious answer is always to say ‘Yes’. Because no amount of money can compare to a precious life.

Thank God a miracle happened, and my baby didn’t have to undergo heart operation anymore. He still had to stay in the NICU for a few days, and go through observation and medication for a month. But other than that, everything went well.

In all this time, I was thanking God not only for my son’s life and restoring his heart health, but also for the finances and time he has provided me and my family. 

As the famous TV commercial says, “bawal magkasakit.” Sometimes, people are afraid to go to the hospital not only for the sickness they might discover, but more for the amount of money they would have to shell out to pay for the hospitalization. 

That’s the sad reality for some people. 

Apart from going into a credit card debt, getting a HUGE hospital bill is one of the worst things you would suffer financially. That huge financial setback might even cause some people to further go into debt, which could take a lifetime to payoff. 

It’s not enough that you are the only one who is healthy because when someone in the family gets sick, everyone would help out, not only financially, but also physically and emotionally. When you only want to be healthy, it feels like all other worries you have become secondary. 

Did you know that in the bible, wealth comes from the Hebrew word ‘Chayil’ meaning strength? That’s why just being healthy is already being wealthy in itself. 

Over the years, I’ve tried to keep myself healthy. I played all kinds of sports when I was a kid: baseball, table tennis, basketball, and more. When I got older, I added badminton and tennis. 

But when I started working, I’ve had struggles keeping myself fit for many reasons. One is the stress of work. Another is eating a lot of junk food, to keep myself emotionally comforted from the stress. A lot of times, it was easier to just sit and do nothing at home, just mindlessly scrolling over my phone than to do some exercise or a physical activity.

When I was in high school, I could play basketball non-stop even in the middle of scorching sun, in my school uniform complete with leather shoes, slacks and polo shirt. 

Now that I am in my forties, I admit that my strength is not where it used to be. The last time I played competitive basketball, my knee hurt so bad I could not even run down the court, grimacing in pain. It was probably because of my heavy weight it was carrying all day and all night long. 

That’s the main reason why I wanted to lose some weight.

Back in 2011, I tried USANA’s RESET program which focused on eating low-glycemic meals like their Nutrimeal where I was able to achieve my best weight around those times. I felt better and I was able to maintain it for a few years, but as time goes by my weight soon ballooned once again. 

I’ve already tried intermittent fasting a couple of years before, and I did lose some weight, about 10 pounds, but it would get stuck there, and then I would eat whatever I want, and then I would soon all regain back the weight that I lost. 

So this time, I had a plan. Now, I wanted to try to control my eating. 

I planned to do a low-carb meal. For the first 5 days, I ate USANA’s Nutrimeal for my breakfast, lunch and dinner. But soon after, I shifted to eating lettuce, eggs, meat, fish, chicken, etc. 

After the first 5 days, I was encouraged by the result. The following week, I added intermittent fasting to the mix, basically skipping breakfast, but still eating low-carb meals. 

Eventually I also added minimal exercise, just some walking and stretching during my fasting period. I make sure to take my vitamins in order to prevent nutrient deficiencies. 

Now, I have settled into a routine and I am happy to reach a much better weight, losing 20 pounds after 4 weeks. 

I am still far away from my goal weight but I am feeling much better. 

Over the past 4 weeks, I’ve tried taking a better hold of my health. I’m doing this for personal reasons, but the most important of which is to have the best of health and strength to keep up with my two boys. 

They grow up fast. As boys, they enjoy physically demanding activities. Running around, playing basketball, and playing with other kids is something they look forward to. 

I simply want to keep up. I want to be able to play basketball with them. I want my body to allow me to engage in physically demanding activities with them. I want to cherish these moments a little bit longer. 

Because soon, they will have other interests that they want to pursue. Soon, they will be a little bit older and moments like these would be harder to come by. 

But for now, I’d like to enjoy it while I still can and have the opportunity to do so. But the first thing for that to happen is for me to be in the best health of my life.

How about you? How have you been taking care of your health lately?


How to overcome debt

Yesterday while walking on the treadmill, I was listening to Dodong Cacanando’s youtube video explaining how people are having a hard time financially because of debt or “utang” in Filipino.

It reminded me of some of the most painful experiences I’ve had in my life. Back in the early 2000’s when I first got a job, I used my new credit card to purchase a lot of things, not realizing that it is a trap. To cut the long story short, I got into credit card debt. It came to a point where I would do cash advance so that I would have the cash to pay for our apartment rental. It was then that I made a personal decision to change my ways. I enrolled in our company’s automatic savings plan where they deduct 2%-20% (depending on your choice) every month from your salary. It happens automatically. You won’t see it in your bank account anymore, until the day you withdraw from the savings account. That helped me build the habit of saving money.

Fast forward a year after, my sister got into an accident. I had to bring her to the hospital. When we arrived at the emergency room, the doctor gave me a list of medicines I need to buy. Immediately, I went to the ATM and withdrew money to pay for the medicines. Thank God, I was able to buy the medicines, and my sister eventually recovered from the accident. I felt relieved, but at the same time, it gave me a profound appreciation to the decision I made a year ago to save up money. I can’t imagine how difficult it would have been had I not made that decision which could have limited my options in helping buy my sister’s medicines. Thank God for second chances.

The habit of saving helped me set aside money for emergencies. I continued that habit and even increased my savings contribution from 2$ to 5%, and then to 10% a year after. When I got promoted, I increased that even further to the maximum percentage which is 20%. Eventually, when I decided to withdraw the amount to use it for my wedding expenses, it has already reached 6 figures. Imagine how much a measly 2% would grow to become a few years after.

When my wife and I went abroad, that habit of saving helped us as well. Eventually when we came back home, we had some savings that helped us transition our life back to the Philippines. We started our investing journey, for which this blog became a platform for me to share my stories and lessons I learned along the way.

I wish learning a habit would be that easy and that life would go on smoothly as we wish it to be. But it’s hardly the case.

A few years after coming back to the Philippines, my wife had a difficult pregnancy for both of our 2 sons. She had emergency Caesarian operation and was admitted to the hospital for close monitoring. Our first son, had to battle through right after he was born, and that’s when the greatest miracle in our lives happened. Recently, my son celebrated his 12th birthday. Everyday I thank God for giving us a chance to be a parent of our miracle child. A year after, my second son was born, also via Caesarian operation. My wife had to go through a lot of sacrifices giving birth to our sons and taking care of them. She resigned from her job, and became a full-time mom to our kids. She momentarily paused her career and focused on raising our boys.

During those days, I had a lot of realizations towards money. For one, truly you won’t understand how blessed you are until you receive something that money cannot buy. But for those things that money can buy, money is still very important. It was also during those early years becoming a parent that I was also starting and struggling to take my business off the ground. The stress of watching our savings slowly getting depleted. The challenge of providing financially for a young family. The self-doubt, the sleepless nights, and crying on your own at the corner begging God to help you overcome the challenges, those are the things that make you stronger in the long run. It is also for those reasons that you are blessed beyond measure, for you have a God that provides for everything that you need, and so much more.

During those times, I also contemplated on getting a job and going back to corporate. It was around 2 years of struggling in the business when I felt like giving up my business. I asked myself whether it was only personal pride that was preventing me to go back? Would pride help me provide for my son’s needs? If I ever need to choose between my pride vs my son’s, I would definitely choose to swallow my pride any time of the day. I did try to go back, but my heart was not into it. Eventually, I decided not to go back. And since I wasn’t going back anyway, I might as well make my business work. So I worked hard and prayed hard. Eventually, my efforts bore fruit and our business started growing. With the income from the business, I was able to sustain our young family’s needs. Eventually, my wife and I even won some awards in the process.

That went on for some time, until I had to take on another challenge.

Our business could not sustain the growth that it had. Eventually, my business stagnated, and I could not figure it out. There were a lot of challenges financially. In my role as one of the leaders of the team, a lot of people consulted me with their financial situations and how to handle them. It was easy for me to advise and give suggestions on how they could overcome it. I realized years after when I faced similar situations that it is not so easy when you’re the one’s facing the problem.

To cut the long story short, I got into a huge credit card debt. Way way bigger than I anticipated. Our business income dropped like a hot potato. But our expenses ballooned even more. The banks were calling me everyday, demanding me to pay it back. I could not sleep thinking about how I can solve my problem. I was paralyzed in fear. I could not think straight. I could not move.

All I could do was pray that one day my problem will go away. Eventually, around 1 year ago, I finally paid off ALL of my credit card debts. It was a huge relief that was lifted from my shoulders. I thank God everyday for helping me go through it all. Looking back, I can’t even credit myself for creating the solutions on how to solve my problem. It was just a decision I had to make in my life to pay for it no matter how long it would take. But I can’t thank God enough for helping me and giving me people like my wife who supported me every step of the way. If you are in a similar situation here are some things that have helped me:

  1. If you’re getting buried in debt, the first thing you need to do is to stop digging.

I had to get my head above water so to speak. I had to get hold of my cashflow. I had to stop and evaluate how much money was coming in and how much money was going out. My first goal was to get to a positive cashflow. Since the money coming in was cut into half, I had to find a way to cut my expenses into half. That means selling my Ford mustang, so that it would help lower my monthly expenses. With the help of my wife, we eventually were able to find a buyer. Thank God for these angels that helped us when we needed it most. I also called up the bank to restructure my credit card debt. I explained the situation to them and we came up with a pay plan that helped reduce our monthly payments. Eventually, after lowering our expenses even further, we managed to finally break even and get into positive cashflow. That helped us greatly mentally and emotionally. We felt like we could finally take a breather after a long long time.

2. Increase your income

This was also the main reason why I decided to go back to corporate after almost a decade of being out. It was a hard decision. There was an opportunity for me to go overseas but after discussing it with my wife, I decided to look for an opportunity in the country instead so that I get to spend my time with my family. I could not bear to be away from my family especially when the world has just gone through the worst of covid and the travel restrictions have yet to be lifted fully. Eventually my former employer gave me a chance to go back to corporate and start again. I am thankful for that chance, and I will always be grateful to my employer who first gave me my first stint in the corporate 20+ years ago and also gave me a chance to transition when I came back from abroad. With the salary I was getting, it helped me payoff my last credit card debt sooner, and also helped me start saving once again.

3. Build better money habits moving forward

Promise to never get yourself in huge credit card debt ever again.This is something I really decided to promise myself personally. Getting into credit card debt is no fun. I’ve had it twice already. In both times, I was able to survive it and managed to fully pay them off. However, I would not wish for anyone to go through it. It takes a lot of mental, emotional, psychological energy just to keep your sanity. Of course, you need a lot of prayers and spiritual support to overcome them for good. This is the main reason why I advocate building better money habits in your life. Building better habits is life being married to your wife. It takes a lot of effort. You have to nurture it. Everyday. If you don’t protect it, you can lose it. But the good news is that if you realize you’re financially struggling, it only takes a simple decision to stop, evaluate and start building better money habits (even how small you think it is – I started with 2%). Eventually, you’ll be surprised how far that simple decision to build that habit would take you. The good news is that once you’re able to pay off your debts, you can take the same habit and begin saving for your peace of mind. It gets even better because you no longer pay interest; the bank is now the one paying you that instead of the other way around. Cheers and let’s live life free from the bondage of debts!


Modern day slavery

The world of money is like a modern day slavery.

Did slavery end after the Exodus from Egypt? Or did it end when Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation declaring “all persons held as slaves…shall be free”?

How is it that Filipinos are still having a hard time working their assess off but barely make a living. 

Are we really free? Or are we just catering to the system that has enslaved many people for many generations. All your life, you’ve been sucked into a system where your sweat, blood and tears are paying for everything.

Investing in a house, for example, will tie you up for the next 25 to 30 years.

If you are already in your forties, by the time your loan ends, you’ll be in your 70’s.  Who wants to be paying for a loan in their 70’s? Shouldn’t you be just enjoying life since you are already retired by then?

Don’t get me wrong. I am not advocating not working or getting something for nothing. It just feels like that there’s something seriously wrong on how the world is set up.

The more I experience the world of money, the more I realize a lot of things — that a man is buried into worrying about money all his life. You worry about how to earn more. Then once you are able to earn money, you next worry about how to keep what you earned. After that, you worry about how to make it grow. Once the money grows, you worry about passing it to your children, and how to train them to grow it even more. The worrying never stops. Most people do not even get to that. They get stuck worrying how to pay off their debts. Some even can only go so far as worry for their next meal. 

How is it that well-meaning people, who just wants to live simply cannot even get beyond worrying about money? Is it really a case of not working hard enough? Or is the system simply skewed towards making life harder for the “modern day slaves.”

It made me realize that some business models are aimed to leverage (or exploit) the severe inequality of this world. The competitive advantage of the outsourcing industry, for example, is based on the difference in exchange rate in between countries from developed nations vs those in the developing nations. One of the reasons we are able to price our offerings competitively is because our currency in the Philippines is 50x lower than those in the western world. When this balance tips over to other side, the business model will not make sense anymore. 

Why should our money be only 50x of other countries? Who made the rules? 

When I went to the U.S. for a 6-month stint, I saw that we were no different from the people I was working with. They are no better than us. I feel like we are even better in some sense, since we are more willing to work hard. But looking at the lifestyle that they lead, you start to wonder how is it that you are living completely different lives when you are doing the same work? You wish you had similar or at least a comparable lifestyle commensurate to the work you are putting in. But that’s not the reality we are living in.

Is it unfair? Yes. Am I saying we should not be doing outsourcing anymore? Of course not. I am not naive. I think we should take advantage of the opportunity to the best that we can. Learn from them. Learn the technologies. Learn the discipline. Learn everything we can. 

While doing that we should also be working on creating more value. Create more Filipino brands who server the whole world. Our country needs to transform from a consumer-centric nation to a world-class producer of great value. We have already proven that we can compete with the best. We have great singers, boxers, nurses, OFWs and so much more. We should dream to get to that point until the world can no longer ignore us. Until the balance of power tips over and we no longer have to rely on the currency exchange to save us. 

We should learn to stand on our own two feet. Imagine a world where we are one of the superpowers, bringing so much value to the world, in different industries, across the globe, even when our Philippine peso already is at par with the other powerful nations. I dream for that to happen in my lifetime, when the currency exchange reaches that of 1PHP = 1USD or whoever is the most powerful currency in the future. Imagine a day when Filipinos no longer have to go abroad and be discriminated against. Imagine us having the freedom to travel and go to places, not forced to do something and sacrifice being away from our families only because that’s the only option we have due to the inequality being brought by the unfairness of currency exchange. 

When that happens, I wish for the world to also experience what is it like to be a Filipino — to be a little bit kinder, a little bit more accommodating, a little bit more human. A world where all the good things that make the Filipino race something we can be proud of is in full display: friendly and welcoming, smiling in spite of disasters, enduring in all of life’s calamities, thriving and making the world a better place, a place not ruled by worrying about money but the spirit of abundance that lives in us all. A world where we can say we’re finally free. Imagine a day that becomes true.


I went back to Corporate after 10 years and here’s what I discovered

After more than a decade outside the corporate world, I went back. As for the reason why I went back, I’ll share it with you next time, but for now I’d like to share with you why I resigned again…2 years since going back. There are 3 reasons: Health, Family and Freedom.


Now that I am in my 40’s, I feel that my health is not where it was before. It takes me longer to recover from a strenuous activity, like playing in a competitive sports like basketball and badminton. When I was younger, there was no such thing as recovery time. After a bit of rest, I’m ready to go. Now, it takes me days to recover at least before I can compete again. I can’t keep up with younger players anymore.

I have already resigned from the fact that I no longer compete for the prizes, but only to enjoy the time to play and get myself play something that I love. I am happy that I can play these sports that I love.

Not sure if the pandemic had anything to do with it, but being inside the room for a long period of time has encouraged me to take more activities than I can probably handle now that I am a little bit older. 

It’s like revenge travel, but instead it’s revenge playing outside the house.

There were also instances where it took a little bit longer for me to recover from my coughs and colds. Maybe I am just getting a little bit older.

When I went back to work 2 years ago, the first thing I noticed was the adjustment I had to make in terms of the physical demands of work. Even though I was working at home, I now had to wake up a little bit earlier than I used to. I had to adjust my waking hours. It took a few weeks but eventually I settled into a routine that helped me.

The first weeks were brutal. It’s been a while to be in the corporate so the adjustment was expected but one of the things that really got to me was time spent doing nothing. As you know when you’re new to a company there’s normally a period where you are on bench while they are preparing to onboard you to your next project. But I wasn’t used to doing nothing the whole day. I spent the whole time going through training that I wouldn’t even know if I am ever going to use, or if they will be relevant. 

I took trainings and got my certifications. It’s like going back to school again. Fortunately, I managed to pass all of them and got exposed to new technologies. For that I am grateful. 

But mentally, the moments where you are staring at the clock and just waiting for the end of your shift to end is soul sucking. It’s like you’re wasting away your life to an unknown force. Every minute feels like a month that’s taken from your life…bringing you closer to your death.

My mental health was really challenged. I feel like, I can give more. I don’t want to be wasting the years I have left. You never know until when you are here on this earth. I don’t want to be wasting it just staring at a clock every day.


One of the things that I value most is my time with my family, especially my wife and 2 boys. I had to adjust to the idea that my time with them will have to be shared with my work. Since I am in a company that is rendering 45-hour workweek. That’s 9 hours per day + 1 hour lunch, total of 10 hours per day. There was also a time when I had to endure an hour traffic going to the office and another hour back home. So that’s already 12 hours total. This does not include overtime hours whether paid or unpaid. I realized I am already spending more than half of my day working, without building anything that can have a residual income or a capital gain in the future. Perhaps the only thing that I am building is a reputation that I can deliver, which only my manager and perhaps his/her boss knows. I don’t feel like I am building anything in terms of developing a reputation across the industry I am working on.

One of the things that made me really re-think whether this kind of setup is the one for me is when my son attended a recognition program, for which he received an award. I was able to go there, but had to miss the medal ceremony because I had to attend a meeting at work. It pained me to see that because of work, I had to miss one of the important events in my son’s young life. I was there, but I could not even watch him receive the award. My son is very understanding when I explained it to him. But then again, that was a big deal for me personally.

The reason that’s a big deal for me was because my father missed a lot of important milestones in my life because of work. Money was always hard to come by. I remember that my dad was always doing so many stuffs just to earn money. I felt like it’s important for me to not let earning money be the reason why I can’t attend an important event in my son’s life. 

This year, our company started mandating return to office, and that started a huge adjustment in my part. The little flexibility that was available before, is no longer at my disposal. The last 3 months before I resigned, I was working 5-days a week return to office. In short, I was already working 10-hour days every day. I had to endure the commute to work and back home. I had to pay for things that I didn’t have to before, like parking, lunch, dinner. When I did my analysis, I was losing money compared to when I was working at home. The thing was, there are 3 resources that are important to me that is suffering: Money, Time and Energy. Obviously, with the additional expenses, I am losing money. With the drive to work and back home, I am spending a lot of time in traffic. Doing this every day took a toll on my energy and health. I had less time to recover. In the weekends, I can’t simply sleep at home because my family would want to go somewhere, because they too would want to get refreshed. That means additional expenses, the 2 days a week would become even shorter compared to the 5-day workweek. More importantly, my health was suffering because I had very little time to recover from the gruelling week. 

The type of work nowadays requires a lot of mental effort, not a no-brainer task like those in a factory setup. A lot of the things that consume my energy is in solving complicated problems and understanding different systems. More often than not, you have to learn a new system quickly and be ready to get up to speed immediately. Some are technical in nature and time is not always on your side.  Often times, you don’t even have an idea whether something will work or not. You just keep the faith and do the best you can. But everything has a price. And most of the time, the price to pay is in degradation in health physically, mentally, psychologically. The more complex the project you are working on, the more stakeholders you have to work with. The technical problems are the easy part. The hard part is in dealing and communicating with people. Different personalities. Different priorities. Different ways of looking at the problem and how to approach it. Again, these kinds of problems take a toll on your health.

That’s why recovering my health was important for me. Physical health, mental health, psychological health. There were moments where I was feeling really sad and it made me decide to take a break from all these things.

My health is important to me and at this time of my life I am choosing myself.


Perhaps I am not really cut out to be an employee. My spirit is too stubborn, and I feel my whole being is screaming for freedom.

Growing up, I have always been someone who does not enjoy getting orders from someone else. Something deep inside of me makes my blood boil. Perhaps it’s ego. Perhaps it’s something else. Perhaps I’m just stubborn. I don’t know.

Don’t get me wrong. I am willing to work. I also deliver results. I am recognized consistently in all my works and they compensate me both in awards and bonuses. More importantly, I can work with anyone. I am mature enough to know when something is important. It means I have to swallow my pride and not sweat over small stuffs. Most of the time, just letting it go to save your peace of mind is the better path. Life is short to be getting worked up about things at work that you wish to be better.

If there’s a lesson I learned during the Covid years, it is the realization that there are only few things in this life that is worth your trouble. I also learned that you can live life without a lot of the other stuffs. Life doesn’t have to be complicated.

The pursuit of material things? Recognition? Pleasing other people? Never ending hustle for money? I have since learned to let them go and seek freedom instead of carrying unnecessary burdens all your life.

Perhaps, this is just part of getting older. After all, we were born into this world with nothing. It is but fitting that when we finally go back to the one who created us, we will also take back nothing. To live with freedom, one must be willing to let go and learn to live lighter.


How to prepare yourself for the upcoming financial crisis

In 2008, I was in Malaysia working for one of the biggest banks in Asia. It was also the year the world of finance crumbled. Lehman Brothers closed. The real-estate market turned upside down. The stock market plummeted. The world was in chaos.

Suddenly, the BIG banks are going bankrupt left and right. The companies we thought would never fail, suddenly looked like a beggar begging for bailouts.

The impact to employees was direct. Companies closed down. People are retrenched.

Security from employment ended.

I remember vividly when one by one my workmates were being told that they are being let go effective immediately. I remember my friends worrying about going back to the Philippines, or staying in a foreign land without a source of income. It was a devastating blow for a lot of people.

That day I was fortunate enough to weather the storm.

Fast forward 14 years after, the prospects of financial security is again getting a beating. High inflation is one. Gas prices are skyrocketing. Food prices are going up. Transportation costs are getting higher.

The only thing not going up is your salary.

The big companies have been down since the start of the year. S&P 500 is down 13%. NASDAQ is down 23%. Apple is down 17%. Facebook is down 42%. Netflix is down 67%. Amazon is down 32%. Google is down 23%. Tesla is down 37%. Bitcoin is down 38%. The US has posted a negative growth rate in the first quarter, another negative growth this second quarter which ends June 30 will put them into recession.

The prospects for this year is not looking good. You may think, well that’s the U.S., but realize that the same is happening to many countries around the world. In the Philippines, gas prices have skyrocketed. Inflation is now at 5.4%. The exchange rate has breached P55 to 1 US dollar.

Be prepared. Things may change from bad to worse in an instant. I’ve seen it happen in 2008. The coming months and years will be a time of significant change. For those who are prepared, those who had financial discipline and positioned themselves well, it could be the best of times. Opportunities will present themselves, but only to those who can see them. Opportunities are not seen by the naked eye, but through the discipline of the mind and the wisdom of learning from your own experience and of those who have come before you.

That’s why it’s important to LEARN, so you will see the opportunities. So what can you do today to help you prepare? Here are 5 things you can do:

1. Keep cash. Cash is king. Save as much as you can. This will help you in case your source of income whether that’s from employment or a business suddenly gets shut down, or becomes unstable.

2. Stay away from BIG purchases that require long-term commitment like real-estate loans or car loans. When central banks raise interest rates, the cost of borrowing goes up and the interest rates for loans goes up as well. It will be harder to take out a loan and the interest will be higher. Also note that loan interest rates sometimes get repriced.

3. Keep your job. Now is not the time to quit. I know there’s a great resignation happening. But I also know, some of the companies have stopped hiring, and the contract of those newly hired got rescinded. Others have even let go some of their employees.

4. Start a side hustle. You know that your salary from your job is fixed. You can wait for the raise but it’s hardly going to put a dent on your bills, or even catch up with the rising prices of goods. Where do you start? Learn to sell. Sell anything. Start with what you have. Take inventory of what you have in your life, what you are good at and where you are, and look for opportunities to create another source of income in your part-time. I managed to do it in 2011, and that source of income is still providing me income up until today 11 years after.

5. Keep on learning. Information is readily available today for FREE. Youtube and google are your new library. There’s no excuse not to learn about money when it impacts all the things important in your life.

Business Life Lessons Life Updates Passive Income Story

10 years after I quit my job. Here’s what I learned.

Today, I am celebrating my 10th year out of the corporate world. It’s been 10 years since I left my job. There were many questions in my mind at that time. Can I make it? Can I really live without a job? Who are you to think you can do it?

So many emotions; mixed emotions. Happy to venture into a new world; but somehow anxious whether I had what it takes to really make it.

I remember when I filed my resignation, I was asked by my manager why I wanted to resign. After all, I had a relatively successful IT career so far. My work as a contractor for one of the biggest U.S. credit card companies in the world has been great. The pay was good. The people are great. What more can I ask for?

Have you ever found yourself asking “is this all there is to life?” After making money, then what? Are you supposed to live life in quiet desperation? Are you supposed to drown yourself in misery? Just taking all the stress in, day in and day out and say to yourself, “it’s part of the job.” 

There were also moments when I felt, I was being bullied (“figuratively”) into working so hard to the detriment of my life outside of work. You have to work on weekends, or early morning shift to support the project. You sacrifice time with your family, even getting calls in the middle of a gathering just to get on the call and resolve a high priority issue. I console myself saying, it is going to be just this one time that I have to do this. But when one project is completed, another one comes along to replace it immediately. The reality sinks in. This is never going to end.

Don’t get me wrong. I loved my job. I loved working on tech problems. They are like puzzles that tickles my brain. It is like watching a mystery or thriller movie where you are the detective who solves the mystery.

It started when I read the book Rich Dad Poor Dad. It’s as if a new world opened up in front of me; an exciting world full of possibilities. I was excited to find out what it was like out there. The book opened up my eyes with lots of possibilities. Is passive income true? Can you really earn while not working? Can you really become an entrepreneur?

Whenever I think about “why” I quit my job, I go back to the restlessness I felt asking those questions. While still working, I have already dipped my hands on several opportunities. I was delighted to see that some of those opportunities are already growing.

So when my manager asked me, why did I resign? I answered, “because I have a business on the side that is growing. At this point in time, I can no longer perform both of my tasks as an employee and as a business owner at the same time. If I fail to give time and effort to my business, it will die. If I focus all of my time and energy on my business, it would not be fair for me to give a mediocre effort on my job. My choice is to give myself a chance to see how far my business can grow.”

I have nothing but gratefulness for my time in the corporate world. It taught me a lot about working on a big team. It taught me about processes and structures and making things happen. As a team leader, I’ve learned to work with people. I also learned to manage a small team of developers, and help them fulfill their potential. It also gave me the confidence to venture out into the world of the unknown, for once upon a time, this world of working in a big corporation, was also unknown to me.  

So on this day 10 years ago, I left the corporate world. 

Is it possible for an employee to shift to become an entrepreneur?

Yes, it’s possible. I am a living proof that it can be done. Well, at least I can say, it’s possible to survive 10 years without having a job. Of course, there are also many people who were not able to make it to 10 years…and that’s ok. Nobody says you have to make it. We each have our own journey to take and live with the choices we make. 

I’ve seen people who went back to their jobs after some time. That’s perfectly ok. There was a time when I thought about (and tried to) go back to work again in a job. I think it was 2 years after I quit when my savings was getting depleted, and my second son was born. I thought about whether it was just pride why I didn’t want to go back to a job. And if it was, I thought is my pride bigger than my willingness to provide for my kids as a father? Obviously, I was willing to do anything to provide for my family. 

But when I tried to go back, there were things that happened that made me realize I have been doing my business half-heartedly up until that time. I knew deep in my heart that I wasn’t giving 100% of my effort (at least not like the effort I’ve put in when I was still working in a job.) So I told myself, “if I am not going back anyway, I might as well make this work.”

So starting that day, I took the business seriously and put in 100% of my efforts into it. I wished I could say it was smooth sailing ever since then, but it was not. There were moments when I would give my best, but still would not be able to reach my goals. There were moments when I got so exhausted from everything, with only a few hours of sleep day in and day out. But I didn’t complain. As they say, “success requires no explanation, failure permits no alibis.” Eventually my efforts paid off and my business started to grow.

Be careful who you listen to.

Until someone is paying your bills for you, then their opinion doesn’t matter.  Many times people have opinions about how you should live your life. You will get them from well meaning parents, to officemates, to friends and others.

Just remember to live your own life. Make your own choices and live with the consequences. After all, we only have one life to live. Nobody is entitled to live your life in your behalf. 

I think this is one of the biggest things you need to overcome if you really want to shift your career to entrepreneurship. Words are cheap. It’s easy to have an opinion. It is harder to do something, and execute it. 

Sometimes, the negativities can come from your own thinking. Your mind play tricks on you by your fears. It can come from subtle thoughts like “who am I to do this? what will other people say? what if I fail? will people laugh at me and say to my face, I told you so?”
I feel more people are hindered by their own thoughts than any other obstacle. When you are able to win the battle within, the battle outside takes care of itself.

Financial literacy is important.

One of the biggest reasons people fail when they try to shift to entrepreneurship is the lack of financial literacy. Financial literacy is actually less of the “know how” and more of the “discipline and delaying gratification.” We are emotional beings. More often than not, we already know what to do. But we lack the discipline to handle our emotions. We give in to the short term rewards that are in front of us.

This is so important that I feel you shouldn’t go into entrepreneurship if you lack the discipline to handle your own money.

The basics are simple. Pay yourself first. A part of what you earn is yours to keep. You should be able to set aside a part of your earnings and live on the rest. This is called savings. As much as possible, don’t get into consumer debt. These are debts that are taking away money from you in the form of interests and they don’t give you any kind of earnings. Growing your money can only happen if you master the first two. It is not the amount that matters, but the habit and discipline that is important. 

Again, I repeat. Don’t go into business, when you can’t handle your own money yet. Practice on your own finances first. Increase your income. Lower your expenses. Save and grow your money. The reason I say this is crucial is because if you are able to manage your own money, you will be able to manage the money of the business as well. They are founded on the same principle. 

The reality of having a business is that it takes time for it to grow, especially if you build it for long term. In get-rich-quick schemes, you may earn a lot of money upfront, but you are actually paying it with something bigger – that is your reputation and character. People will stay away from you. They will no longer trust you. You sometimes even lose confidence in yourself. That’s too big a price to pay for a short term gain.

You want to get into entrepreneurship precisely because you want to earn more money, pay off your debt, etc. Unfortunately, more money will not solve your problem. It will only magnify what you already lacked – that is you lack of financial discipline. It is like putting gas into a fire. After a sudden influx of cash, you go and splurge on shopping for unnecessary things. You live the life of luxury in one day. You live like a one-day millionaire. That’s the reason why you sometimes see lotto winners ending up broke and having more debt a few years after winning the lotto than before they won.

Keep your day-time job. Start side hustles. The more the merrier. The reason is that you never know which one will pan out. After some time, evaluate which can give you the best return for your investment in time, money and energy. Then go all in. Focus and put your 100% effort into it.

God is powerful.

In shifting my career, there were countless challenges along the way. It is a lot like riding a roller coaster. One minute you are so happy because you were able to setup a meeting with a client, then the next moment you get depressed because he changed his mind at the last minute when you are already at the meeting place. You console yourself and move on to the next. Somehow you manage to remain upbeat, only to get depressed again because you lost your phone on your way home. These are the moments nobody speak about. It seems all glamorous and easy. It is not. But these are also the moments when keeping on earns for you the rewards of tomorrow.

So how do you keep on when everything is tough? 

One of the things that helped me get through hard times was remembering that God is powerful. I am saying this not as a religious fanatic, but as a practical man who has experienced the grace of God in my life.

When my eldest son was born, his heart was supposed to be operated on right away. We were supposed to bring him to the Philippine Heart Center the following day, But by the grace and mercy of God, his condition improved overnight and there was no need for the operation anymore. A miracle happened. After a month, we were able to go home. Now, he is 9 years old. Who would have thought? Only God knows His plans for you and me. God is indeed great! All praise and glory to Him.

That experience made me realize that nothing is impossible with God. Today, when I encounter problems, I would console myself by saying, “if God was able to deliver us from that “impossible” challenge back then, how much more will He be able to deliver us in this moment. This is nothing compared to that. God is powerful.” 

My prayer is for you to hold on to that promise in your life. God is with you in all your sorrows and fears. Lift them up to him and watch Him make miracles in your life.

The hardest part of having a business is dealing with people. 

One of the things I love about working in IT is that most of the time you are only working with computers. They are only systems with definite and known outcomes. You know what to expect. You know when it is not working. You know that once you figure it out, you will be able to solve it and it will definitely work. 

People, on the other hand, are one of the most complicated beings in the face of the planet. One moment you thought you knew how to deal with them; the next moment you are dumbfounded, for you did not expect that reaction from them. How many times have you uttered the words, “I did not expect that he will do something like that”?

You cannot put them into a box. They are people. They are unpredictable. Just like you…and me. We are all imperfect; and that’s what make us beautiful. You never know what surprise you are going to get.

If only I could master working with people, my life would be great. But unfortunately, most of my business “failures”were due to me not being able to handle people the right way. There were times I lost my temper, and that led to a major misunderstanding…a misunderstanding that because of my pride, I failed to resolve in a timely manner…and eventually led to falling out. The business suffered as a result. 

Of course, it is easier to see now looking back, but when it is happening it is harder to see. You make the best decision you know based on what you know and how you feel. Sometimes though, how you feel at that moment (i.e. “pride and frustration”) can derail any kind of “knowledge” you thought you learned. These things you can’t read in books. You can only experience it to know how to handle it the right way when it comes.

The people around you will define you.

Be careful who you surround yourself with. As the saying goes, “birds of a feather, flock together.” I remember asking myself, why is it that most people in my team are IT professionals. Then I realized, I attract the people that I am. When I had 2 kids, the people who joined my team were also parents with 2 kids. It’s spooky!

People around you can lift you up, or bring you down. That’s why you need to be careful who you spend your most time with. There’s this exercise I ask whenever I give personal finance seminars. You list the names of the 5 people you spend your most time with. For example, if you’re working, who do you hangout with in the office? Your boss. Your peers. Your friends. Your enemies. Then try to average out their earnings. Most likely the number you will get is around the same number as your own salary.

What’s the point? People like to hang out with people who are similar to them. You rarely see a big boss or CEO hanging out with the new hires, mid-level managers, etc. Who does he hang out with? Other CEOs or his VPs or other friends. 

So if you want to upgrade your income, you need to learn to spend your time with people who have higher income than you. I am not telling you be a “sipsip” or be close to them for the sake of being friends with them. I am just telling you, allow yourself to be around people who are better than you. I am telling you it is going to be uncomfortable. I think that’s why there’s a thing called imposter syndrome. That feeling you get whenever you feel “unqualified” or overachieving something, is going to manifest its ugly face when you start something new. Just keep on. Soon, when you are able to adjust into your new reality, it will be gone.

Enjoy the journey. 

Tomorrow is not promised. I think that’s also the same thing that the Pandemic has taught us. While you are here, spend time with your loved ones. Tell them how much you love them. Use those plates that are gathering dusts in your cabinet. 

The 10 years has passed by quickly. When I was in the middle of it, I thought it was going to last forever…or at least for a very long time. But I think the life of something is not up to us. We can push, we can crawl, we can fight all we want. But when life teaches us, the best thing to do is embrace it and enjoy. For that’s what we are here for. To learn and enjoy. To live life and love it. Never forgetting the fact, that some of our best laid plans pales in comparison to the plans of the God up above who is looking out for us. 

I think somewhere in the bible says “look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” They don’t have to worry about what to eat. How much more precious are you than them? 

Even imperfect you are as a father, you know how to give bread instead of a stone. How much more is your father in heaven going to give you something when you ask for it in prayer. 

You may be going through a lot these days. Pray and take heart for God is with you. This too shall pass.

Share your stories.

We are more alike than we think we are. We all want to earn enough income to provide a comfortable living for our family. We want to spend time with our family. We want to payoff our debts to remove the stress of calling creditors.

That’s why I think, sharing our stories is important. By sharing my stories, my hope is that you will know that you are not alone. And if good things happened to me, then it can also happen to you. 

When you look back to all the things you’ve gone through, you will remember fondly the good times. One of the funniest moments I’ve had in the last 10 years was when me and my friends went through the “walking dead theme park” together…even though you’re scared to death, you go along with your friends. Only to find out they are scared too just like you. You end up shouting and pushing the zombies out of your way, scrambling your way straight out to the exit bursting with laughter. You know the saying “HAGALPAK na tawa”? I wish you experience something like that in your life. We all need that. Especially during these times.

You will remember the days when you thought it was impossible, but through working together, days and nights of hard work and sleepless nights, finally success was achieved.

But the sweetest success I’ve had are the victories I’ve shared with other people. When people say celebrate with you and shout “Gold na kami!” That is one of the best feelings in the world. To have people with you celebrating the victory like it is their own. I must admit, I like that better than just me enjoying by myself, because, nothing is done alone. There are countless selfless souls working with you, cheering you on, and helping you one way or another in the road to victory.

There is more to life than earning money, having a job, or building a business. 

At the end of the day, we are more than our jobs. We are more than our businesses. We are more than how we earn money. We are fathers. We are brothers. We are sisters. We are friends, foes, family. 

The minute you realize that you brought nothing into this world and you will bring nothing of it when you die, it makes you wonder, what is all the point? Why put money in a pedestal at the expense of losing your family, or friends? Why get so frustrated by the outcome of a lost business or a job? 

Life goes through cycles. Up and down and up again. and down again. and up. Sometimes, you seem to have a midas touch, every thing you touch becomes successful with little effort. Other times, it seems like you are going against the flowing river. All your hardwork and efforts are going nowhere. 

In my life, I have encountered both. I have experienced having plenty, or at least enough to provide and have a little more to enjoy. I have also experienced financial struggles and being in debt where banks keep on calling me to pay them up. But through it all God has been merciful and gracious that He has delivered me time and time again.

My encouragement to you is that, if you are going through rough times, know that it will end. Good times will come. And if you are having a great time right now, enjoy the moment and always remember to be kind to the people who may need help. Know that challenges will also come and now is the perfect time to prepare. Challenges and calamities expose our weaknesses and areas for improvement. It is not meant to defeat us, but to sculpt our character to what God wants us to be. So take heart. Everything happens for you, not against you. 

Look into the future with hope. The past 10 years has passed for all of us. They say you should save time. The reality is that time will pass anyway whether you decide to spend it or not. The only choice you have is how you will spend it.

Will you spend it regretting about the past? Or being grateful for the lessons you learned along the way.

Will you focus on the negativity and despair? Or will you spend it on getting better?

The choice is up to you.

As for me, I choose to see the brighter side of life. I want to enjoy each moment. In the future, I wish to do more travelling. I wish to have more colorful experiences; stories to tell; adventures to go to.

How about you? What’s your choice? What are you most excited about for the next 10 years of your life? 


The OFW story: Why Do Millions of Filipinos Go Abroad?

Recently, I went to Singapore to do a 2-day training and workshop for our teammates who are mostly OFW (Overseas Filipino Workers). Some of them have been in Singapore for more than 10 years, some around 8 years, while others have only been there for 1 year.

It was a blast sharing stories with them. More than a decade ago, I was also an OFW living and working in Malaysia. It reminded me why I decided to pursue my career outside my home country, the Philippines.

You see, a year prior to my decision to go abroad, I was in the U.S. for a 6-month stint from my former company. It was a great time for me, especially that it was first time outside the country, in a far away land. Our company took care of everything, the house, the car, the allowances, etc.

The thing is, it was my first time to experience a life like that. It is almost like you were living in a dream land, just like what you see in the movies. Every night, me and my friends would go out swimming and enjoying ourselves in a jacuzzi. Once a month, we would go out of town to unwind and visit new places like the Grand Canyon, or L.A.’s Disneyland or Universal Studios.

The work was surprisingly easier compared to when I was in the Philippines. I felt like a child going out in the playground. It felt like going outside after being grounded for so long. It felt like the new place was a playground.

You see, most of my workmates work really early. At around 7am most of them are already in the office. They take lunch on their desk and leave early at 3pm. When I asked, they simply said it’s because they are fetching their kids from school. Some are going to their kid’s baseball game or something like that. I was amazed.

The experience gave me a picture of what life could be like in a land full of opportunities like the U.S. When I came back to the Philippines, the drastic contrast to the work enviroment suddenly made me feel so overwhelmed, and severely undercompensated. What 6 months prior was just “tiis tiis” lang muna, made little sense anymore.

They say when your mind is expanded to a new idea, it will no longer be able to go back to its original form. Add to that, I learned that my batchmates who were working in Malaysia were earning 3x as much income as me. So when my bond with my company ended, I resigned and pursued a career abroad. I only had one goal then, to save up enough money so me and my gf (now my wife) could get married. After a year, my dream came true.

We spent another year and a half abroad. This was in the middle of recession of 2008. Many of our officemates were fired. It was scary to say the least. Everyday you are worrying whether you will be next.

It made me realize that there is no such thing as job security. Even if you are the most loyal employee with the greatest skill, even if your boss likes you and trust you do a great job, when recession strikes, no one is immune. The whole company can suddenly collapse and you find yourself without a job.

Fortunately, the company was able to whether the storm without letting us go. But the minute an opportunity to come back to the Philippines for good was made available for us, we grabbed it and never looked back.

There are a lot of sacrifices being an OFW but I cannot deny there are also a lot of benefits as well.

When I was in Singapore, I was able to meet up with a reader of this blog. Her name is Daisy. She’s been working in Singapore for 8 years. Back home, her family of 3 kids and husband live in the province of Negros. Once a year she is able to come back home for 15 days to be with her family.

She shared to me her struggles as an OFW, of the challenge of raising her kids while being away from home. Also her advocacies in helping our fellow OFWs in their plight overseas. Some of them I realized could not even make a simple phone call to their loved ones because they are not permitted to do so. A lot of times, their friends do some “patak patak” to help one of them who is in need. It reminded me of the term “bayanihan.”

She hosts a radio show online for 2 hours once a week, and thousands of OFWs are blessed from her show. The thing is, she’s doing it not for the money, but she just feels great whenever she is able to help out our fellow OFWs.

Our conversation was cut short because I had to leave for the airport or I will miss my flight going back to the Philippines. I was inspired by her story and I pray she will bless more OFWs in her advocacy.

It made me reflect why do Filipinos go abroad. It reminded me of my reasons more than a decade ago to do the same. Here’s a video that captured my thoughts on this topic. By the way if you are not yet subscribed to my Youtube channel, please subscribe so you get to watch our future episodes. Watch and enjoy!

P.S. Are you an OFW working abroad? Comment what country and what made you decide to go abroad in the comments below. If you are reading this email, you can also hit the reply button and share with me your OFW story.

P.P.S. Watch out for our upcoming episodes on How to Save Faster as an OFW as well as What Kinds of Businesses an OFW Can Start While Working Abroad. Subscribe to my Youtube Channel and click the notification button to get updated regularly. Cheers!


Featured Story: Billy De La Fuente Transformation Story

Today’s article is very special because I will be featuring one of my mentors for the last 7 years in my journey as an entrepreneur. His name is Mr. Billy De La Fuente. One of the things I admire about him is his passion to teach and train people, regardless of their current background. There was this one time where we had a bonding session with my co-mentors. We just decided to play bowling together. I am not very good with bowling but one thing I noticed was, Mentor Billy could not contain himself. I saw him helping out, giving tips to the new bowlers like me. When you are passionate about what you do, it just comes out naturally for you. You can’t help it. It’s already in your blood – a teacher, a mentor, a friend who cares.

Anyway, to get a glimpse of who he is, here’s an excerpt from his website at Read on and enjoy.

Billy Dela Fuente (or Mentor Billy as his team XTRM 1-11 fondly calls him) is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, XTRM 1-11 Founder and CEO and father rolled into one – or to sum it up, superman in a suit, jeans and Jordans. He was born and raised in Metro Manila and is currently residing in their dream abode in Pasig City with his wife Pin, and their three sons Godfrey, Enzo and Joaquin. He graduated Chemical Engineering from the University of Santo Tomas but did not push through with the career, instead he ventured into various businesses while also modeling.

Billy modeled for both Globe Telecom and Coca Cola before. His eureka moment happened when he reached the age of 24, and was already planning to settle down with his then girlfriend Pin. He realized that the amount he was earning from his Franchising and Loading businesses were not enough to support a sustainable future he has envisioned. Because of that, he frantically searched for solutions for this dilemma. Until one day, he was able to read Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, and Multiple Streams of Income by Robert Allen. He was also able to watch the documentary The Secret. Those books and video changed his life.

The things he learned became the foundation of Billy’s business fundamentals – the value of Time and Residual Income. Time being our biggest asset and it being limited instilled in him the importance of acting swiftly. On the other hand, Residual Income is having your money work for you. These concepts plus the unrivaled hardwork he has put in, propelled him to become one of the top Directors of USANA Health Sciences, a leading global health and wellness company, today. It has also allowed him to achieve his goals and live the life he has imagined with his family.

Nowadays, Billy’s business and know how have helped touch thousands of lives not only in the Philippines but around the world. The organization that he has co-founded, XTRM 1-11, has been a beacon of transformation in the field of entrepreneurship as well as professionalism. Billy being the head of the pack, continues to train and develop people for them to get their personal wealth and health goals. Expanding his network in the process, his business enabled him the opportunity to live the lifestyle of their dreams. And he’s not finished yet. Because he wants you to live the dreams you have imagined, too.

Billy just needs two things from you: an open mind, and the mentality of helping others to succeed. Because, an open mind makes you become ahead of others, and helping others get what they want will eventually make you get what you want. Pretty neat, right?

Looking back over the years, I got a rare chance to witness first-hand how his transformation has been, from a reluctant leader to a strong leader who leads thousands of associates around the world. He leads by example. He is naturally curious. But one thing I noticed about him is his people skills and his ability to read people. Sometimes, he jokes around and says he is not that fluent in English but he has improved a lot and has been invited as motivational speaker into countries like the U.S., Mexico, Canada and many many more.

Today, I’d like you to get a glimpse of the “Taglish” version of him. He speaks from the heart. He cries when he can’t contain his emotions. But a leader who leads from the heart, sometimes, speaks with his eyes. For the eyes is the window into the soul.

Here’s an excerpt from one of his Facebook Post when he shared his story of transformation.

Alam nyo ba na ang path para maging successful tayo ay hindi diretso?
Yan ang narealize ko looking back at my journey. Kadalasan ang daming detours sa daan. Yun tipong akala mo tama na yung dinadaanan mo, naligaw ka na pala. Or worse, yung tumbok pala nun, di yun ang gusto mo na mapuntahan.
Pero iba talaga si God. His plans are always on point, maybe not in the timeframe that we expected, but in the timeframe that fits. Swak. Sakto.
Naalala ko, nung elem pa lang nagbebenta na ko ng NBA cards (relate ka?), na napalitan ng pagbenta ng magic (the gathering) cards nung High School. At syempre nung college, kaliwa’t kanan ang part time ko: red ribbon crew, sa catering, modelling. Ambitious kasi ako. And I really want to make a name for myself para sa family ko at sa future.

Looking back, all the sacrifices have been worth it. All the detours that I have experienced along the way have been instrumental to my transformation. Ang focus dapat pala wala sa kung ano ka sa ngayon, kundi kung sa ano ang pwede ka maging in the future.
Remember, we are all potentials waiting to be unleashed. Kaya laban lang!

Nowadays, mentor Billy is growing his influence across different channels. You can reach him @billydelafuente on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, Linkedin, Snapchat and through his website at to get some tips in life, travel, inspiring stories and more. He also gets invited regularly to different youth organizations to share his story and give some tips on how to become a young leader.

I have had a chance to be invited in his lovely home many times. I can still remember, how he taught me regarding financial management for 3 straight hours. One on one. Not many successful people care enough to invest on a personal level like that. I learned how to grow my financial portfolio by focusing on controlling my expenses and knowing where to invest to grow my income even more. I realized some of my past programming as an employee has been hindering me from fulfilling my full potential. Slowly but surely, I am growing my entrepreneurial mindset and skills. Thanks to mentor Billy.

As with any story of transformation, the main ingredient is having a mentor who can guide you. Yes, mentoring is very important. It fast tracks your success.

Today, much of my work goes into mentoring individuals who are hungry to learn about doing business, just like what mentor Billy has done for me over the years. It is time to pass on and extend the same help to those people who are hungry to learn from a mentor.

Perhaps, you are just like me before, tired of reading so many books and attending so many seminars but with no results to show for it. You may have fears and you are looking for a community of entrepreneurs who will be there to support you, not only in training you the skills but in enabling you to manage the ups and downs of emotions you go through as an entrepreneur. Now, you are ready to take action. Now, you are seriously considering something with your situation. There is hope! As they say, when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.

If you are at the stage in your life, I have good news for you. This month, I am in the middle of building a new team of 10 people as part of my newest project. If you are interested to be part of it, simply reply to this email or message me through my website at for more details. Let’s connect. This may be the start of a long and successful partnership. Cheers!


Featured Story: Former IT Software Developer Fulfills Dream Europe Trip

A couple of weeks ago, Ana Angelica Ricafrente or “Anj” as we call her, shared her inspiring story with our team. She was back from a 49-day Europe trip travelling 11 countries and exploring 26 different cities.

Anj is also an IT professional just like me so I related so much with her stories, and having started the business in around the same time as her 6 years ago I was a witness to her struggles and triumphs along the way. She loved to travel and proved not only that her business can finance her dream Europe trip but she also found a way to have the FREEDOM to live the life she wants.

I totally agree with her when she said that MONEY was NOT the problem. She could earn it! Especially if you’re in IT, you are paid well. She can work harder. She can go abroad. That’s not a problem. The problem was she did not have TIME. I think this is the curse of being a great worker – if you do great work, they give you MORE work! Haha! I used to think “ngayon lang naman to, lilipas din to, makakapag-bakasyon din ako.” But the sad truth is that after the completion of a BIG project, they will give you an even BIGGER project! Obviously, they are not paying you to TAKE A VACATION. They are paying you to WORK.

I too, was there when these words were uttered in Meralco Theater back in 2011. It has become a blueprint for some of us, a goal we are willing to work hard on for a dream to take a vacation and STILL get paid, get paid, get paid!
“Work Work Work Work Get Paid
Work Work Get Paid Get Paid
Work Get paid Get paid Get paid
Until Eventually
get paid get paid get paid.”
— Monica & Bryan Penrod, Meralco Theater, June 30, 2011.

Truly, there’s more to life than earning an income. There’s LIVING the LIFESTYLE of your DREAMS!

Read her story below and be inspired.

When my mom and dad died when i was a teenager, I felt that life can be really short and i must see the world before i die. Left with only P50,000 (roughly US$1000) as inheritance money to finish my final year in the University, I was excited to work and earn my paycheck and use it to see the world! When i got the job as a software development analyst in a Telecommunications company, I made sure that i travel at least once a month! But with 15 vacation leaves a year (15 sick leaves), i felt it was not enough!


Staying in a cubicle for 8 hours everyday felt like life is passing by me. And weekend trips or long holidays felt like an ‘escape’ rather than reality.

It’s true, i believe that anyone who works hard can earn lots of money in IT or any other career. But is there an opportunity out there where i can work hard now and earn lots of time in the future?

June 2011, i was presented with an opportunity that’s not in line with my profession. I saw it’s potential because some people were living the life I wished for: a life where i can choose where to spend my time. I told myself, what’s 2-5 years of learning and working on a new profession if i can create the life i want? What’s there to lose? Time would pass anyway so I might as well try it.

“Work Work Work Work Get Paid
Work Work Get Paid Get Paid
Work Get paid Get paid Get paid
Until Eventually
get paid get paid get paid.”
— Monica & Bryan Penrod, Meralco Theater, June 30, 2011.

That’s the future i wanted.
Fast forward to 2017. No longer do i post the words “back to reality” after a vacation… because this is now my reality. 🙂

I did not Y.O.L.O. as others might think. I built a passive income source first that can allow me the flexibility of spending my time to things important to me.
My mentor told me, Y.O.L.O is not true. You don’t live once! Y.O.D.O., You only DIE once, but you should LIVE EVERYDAY! <3


Watch this video to learn more about Anj’s amazing travel adventure to Europe!!! 49 days, 11 countries and 26 cities!!! Fully-paid all by her online business!!! The best part is, she was still earning PASSIVE INCOME while travelling since her business is thriving even without her.


Featured Success Story: Charles and Glaiza Villaflor

Today, I will be featuring the story of a young ambitious and hard working couple.

Meet Charles and Glaiza Villaflor. I met this couple more than a year ago through their friend and personal business mentors RJ and Jacq De Lara. Charles is a former Chef from Australia, while Glaiza is a former Certified Public Accountant for one of the biggest food chains in the Philippines.

Prior to going into business, they were already former Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from Australia. After a few years they decided to come home to the Philippines and take a chance at building their dreams here. They ventured into many businesses but none of those business flourished. They soon realized that starting a business is not easy. You have to worry about a lot of things.

They were about to go back to Australia once again when they decided to check out what RJ and Jacq De Lara were doing. Glaiza and Jacq were former colleagues in one of the biggest oil and gas companies in the world. Glaiza witnessed the change in lifestyle of her former colleague, and she was curious what her friend was up to. When they decided to take a leap of faith and grap the opportunity to partner up with RJ and Jacq and be part of XTRM 1-11, their lives changed dramatically.

After working the business part-time and earning extra income in US dollars, they soon found themselves in front of one of the biggest opportunity of their lives. Eventually, they decided to give up their plan to go to Australia and focus 100% of their efforts together in building their growing international business. They don’t have to go abroad anymore just to earn dollars. In a matter of months, Glaiza was able to resign from her job and pursue their business full time. They have been promoted as one of the top directors in the company and helped a lot of people from all over the Philippines and abroad earn an extra $200 – $600/week part-time. More than that, now they are the proud owners of their own BRAND NEW TOYOTA FORTUNER.

What I admire about this couple is their tremendous DRIVE and FOCUS. They won’t stop at anything. They are also very coachable and eager to learn. Even though they are already successful in their profession, they never hesitated in asking how they can be better in building their business. I know this is just the start of an amazing entrepreneurial career for them. If they were able to make it, so can you.

Watch this video to learn and get tips on how you can succeed in business just like them.


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