Poor Pinoy Habits That Are Affecting Our Finances

Image from elixword

One time during our doctorate class we discuss about how habits affect our behaviour. Being a Filipino, there is this kind of habit within our system that we cannot deny that is indeed affecting our attitude. Even more this kind of habit is popular and inherent within us. True, there are “ugaling Pinoy” that we can be proud of however there are some that may be borderline bad most especially with regards to how we deal with money.

Little did we know these ugaling Pinoy are literally holding us back to financial freedom. What is worst is that we have known these since we were very little and more so acquainted with the kind of system. Perhaps now is the time to do some reality check if indeed you are guilty with these habits.

Palaasa o Dependency

There is no denying how close our ties are with our family members and even extended family. The kind of bond that we have is something we can truly be proud of. However, too much dependency can kill you (cue too much love can kill you). This holds true with regards to money and finances. And when we have a family member who is doing better with regards to his or her money, we often stick to that person and lo and behold ask for money. One good example of this one would be our OFWs. When we know that someone is working abroad, we always assume that they’ve got all the money. That is why we treat them like ATM’s. We ask and ask for money. Even more, we constantly harass them for pasalubong like chocolates and all. For children, there are some who can’t break free from asking money from their parents even if they are already capable of working. That is why many becomes “tambay” and living well within the confines of their parents while their parents are the ones working.

Ningas Cogon

Ningas Cogon is a Filipino trait that is characterized by somebody who is very enthusiastic at the beginning. In the end, will leave it unfinished. Ningas” is a noun which means flame, blaze or combustion, while “kugon” or “cogon” is a grass which can be easily burned with its representation, the fast blazing of cogon-, signifies Filipinos’ way of eagerness only at the beginning and immediate loss of interest when it approaches its end which never happens. If we correlate it with finance, there are many instances where ningas cogon would be apparent. A good example would be our savings and budgets. We are eager to start sorting out our money by having a budget at the start of the day only to not live up to it. We always say that we save money however we always wait for the “right” time to begin with. No wonder we love doing New Year’s Resolutions only to fail in the first few days. On the other end of the spectrum would be our debts. We owe someone money and at first we are eager to pay the debt. Yet as it progress, we are no longer interested to pay thus incurring interest and late charges doubling and even tripling our initial debt amount.

Pasikat o Showing Off

We often hear “Pasikat” and there’s even a segment called “Magpasikat”. We Pinoys are somehow guilty of showing off in a way or another. That is why if there would be a new iPhone or Samsung phone in the market, we would want to be the first one to have it so we can show it to our friends and brag about it. When someone was able to afford this item, we would also like to have it as well just so we can show off. Whenever we would go back to our province, we always want to project that we live better off than the rest. Whenever there would be celebrations, we always want to give the best that we can afford even at the expense of incurring debt so that our friends and relatives can exclaim that we can provide the best parties there are. Worst, some of these instances we just cannot afford. No wonder most of our debts can be attributed more to our wants rather than our needs. We tend to embrace the most expensive item so that others can say that we are rich even if we are not.

Manana Habit or Later Alligator

So what exactly is manana habit? Manana is a Spanish word which means “tomorrow” or “morning” and it could also means as “putting something off until another time.” This is where the Filipino’s phrase “mamaya or mamaya na” came from. This trait was instilled to the Filipinos during the Spanish era in which they use this habit in work and serious business as a silent protest to the invaders. In the aspect of finance, we tend to forego the idea of saving and investing tomorrow. Or better yet, we wait until we are on the verge of retirement or old age. We often say that today is just so early doing it. Why do it now when we can do it tomorrow. Then we hear the same phrase again tomorrow. Financial experts would always say the best time to invest is now. However, if we tend to embrace this later alligator habit, we can never invest at all. Then we realize how late it is already when we are now old and retiring and our money can only generate so little.

These are just some of the poor habits we have as Filipinos. If you are guilty of one or two, perhaps it would be best to correct it and get rid of it today. Remember, there are still far many good habits that we can be proud of that can zoom our way to financial freedom. We only have to steer clear of these poor habits so we can get started.

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