Money Mondays with Chinkee Tan

Ano ang gagawin mo sa perang kinita mo? Learn all about the best ways to manage your money and finances with Chinkee Tan!

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Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

Why don’t you give love on Christmas Day?

Iyan ang kanta ng Jackson 5 at ng Christmas icon na si Jose Mari Chan. Mukhang theme song din natin ito because we love to generously give during this season. Pero it seems like there are people who misinterpret this song. Ang sabi ay give love. It does not automatically mean ‘give gifts.’ The mindset of equating love to gifts ay ang reason kung bakit maraming nagiging pulubi after the holidays.

To avoid being broke this season, here are some more financial mistakes we do during Christmas.

Recap from last week’s article:

Financial mistake 1. No ipon for the holidays

Financial mistake 2. No plan for the 13th month pay/bonus

Financial mistake 3. Not prioritizing the needs

Financial mistake 4. Fiesta sa mesa, fiesta sa utang

 Nagsimula sa Lechon (manok, baboy, baka, or all of the above)

May pancit na, may spaghetti pa

Menudo and all its kamag-anak: afritada, caldereta, mechado

May fruit salad na, may pa-graham cake pa

Dagdag pa ang leche flan

This is just a glimpse of our table on Christmas Day. Sobrang acceptable lang sa atin ang mag-overeat and to eat unhealthily because we have the occasion as an excuse. “Once a year lang naman ‘to.” You try to justify your overflowing plate. Tapos kakantahan ka pa ng Tita mo na “Tis the season to be chubby, falalala…” Edi lalo ka pang bumalik sa buffet table.

Oh how we love to fiesta during Christmas. Nothing’s wrong with that because tama ka nga, once a year lang naman ito. What is not okay is that because of this once-a-year init, naging piyesta ang utang mo because gusto mong piyesta ang mesa mo. Masaya ka nga sa Pasko pero iiyak ka naman kinabukasan dahil singilan na.

Let’s check ourselves why we have that mindset of feasting even though we really can’t afford it. Let’s ask ourselves these questions:

Bakit kailangan maraming handa sa Pasko?

Naghahanda ba talaga tayo nang marami para sa kakain o para sa makakakita sa social media?

Mababawasan ba ang kasiyahan sa pamilya kung mababawasan ng ilang putahe sa mesa?

At ang pinakamahalagang tanong: Kaya ba talagang maghanda ng marami?

Kung kaya, go, feast!

Kung kinukumbinse mo ang sarili mo na kakayanin, pause ka muna. Baka naman hindi fiesta ang ikasasaya ng pamilya. Baka sapat na ang ilang putahe at ang pagsasama-sama?

Financial mistake 5. Ulirang anak award

Filipinos have strong family values. We go the extra lengths just to support our family, especially our aging parents. However, this loving trait becomes toxic when you can’t save for yourself, when you forget about your future because all you have in mind is your family’s future.

When Christmas, nagkakagulatan na lang. May pa-TV, may pa-abroad, or may pangkabuhayan showcase ka na para kina Mama at Papa. Pwedeng-pwede ka nang gawaran ng Ulirang Anak Award. For sure masayang-masaya ang magulang mo niyan. Pero kamusta ang bank account mo? Kinailangan mo bang umutang para lang may maganda kang reputasyon from your parents, lalo na sa mga kamag-anak na witness sa gift-giving sa reunion?

I understand that you love to give, but remember gift-giving during Christmas takes preparation. Para makapagbigay ka ng bonggang regalo, you must have saved for it. Taking a debt must not be an option. It’s either you afford it or not. Kung hindi pa kayang mag-regalo sa Pasko, tell your parents to wait a little longer. Malay mo ba sa New Year’s Day, o sa Valentine’s, o kahit pa sa Fire Prevention Month, kaya mo na bilhin ang TV ni Mama at Papa. Their love and affirmation for you is not measured by the inches of that TV. They love you just because. For sure your love for them cannot also be just expressed by a mere appliance.

Financial mistake 6. Ninang/ninong of the year

May tradition tayong mga Pinoy, we cannot refuse whenever our kumare or kumpare asked us if we can be their child’s Ninong/Ninang. At dahil dyan, may iba akong kakilala na they have over 50 godchildren!

We also have a concept that Ninongs and Ninangs are always expected to give aguinaldo to their inaanaks every Christmas. Pag 25th of December na, you will just wake up sa katok ng kumare mo at dala-dala niya ang inaanak mo na dating hindi nagmamano kapag nagkakasalubong kayo sa kalsada, pero ngayon ay sobrang galang sa ‘yo. Babatiin ka pa ng “Merry Christmas NINONG!” Yung bati na may bigat sa word na Ninong.

So ikaw, bilang you want to be the best Ninong/Ninang that you can be, ay huhugot ka ng Php100 sa wallet mo. You really wanted to give bente kasi yun lang ang kaya mo sa araw na yun. Pero nahihiya ka kasi kasama ni inaanak si kumare. Pag-alis nila, umiyak na naman ang wallet mo.

Sa totoo lang, that’s not the real role of being a godparent. Hindi mo obligasyon na maging instant Santa Claus sa mga inaanak mo tuwing Pasko. The real role of a godparent is to take care of the godchild if ever the parents are incapable of taking care of the child. This incapability covers the death of the parents.

That tradition of giving aguinaldo must be done out of your generosity or out of the abundance of your heart, and not because of what your kumare/kumpare expects you to do. Dahil sa misinformation na ito, maraming nagtatagong Ninong at Ninang at ang toxic pa doon ay kapag hindi nakapagbigay si Ninong/Ninang for whatever reason, they are branded to be madamot or kuripot.

So what can we do about this?

First, we need to change our attitude towards being a godparent. Let us strive to be a godparent who chooses to give wisdom to our inaanak.

Second, we also need to change our attitude and expectations towards our godparents or sa ninong/ninang ng anak mo.

However, if you really want to give, then prepare for it. Envelope system, or for the sake of the holidays, Ang Pao system is a good way to allocate aguinaldo for all your godchildren. You can be sure that no inaanak is left behind plus you can easily know how much you must allocate for them.

Again, giving aguinaldo is not your obligation or responsibility as a Ninong or Ninang. You must give simply because you want to give, not because you are ashamed not to give.

Christmas is a season to be jolly, but it also has the tendency to bring in toxic traditions and spending habits. Just like in our previous post, financial management is not seasonal. Christmas is not a season to forget to discipline ourselves in our spending and on sticking to our financial goals. 

THINK. REFLECT. APPLY.

  1. Anu-ano pang mga toxic spending habits mayroon ang mga Pinoy?
  2. Paano ka makatitipid sa paghahanda at sa pagreregalo?
  3. Anong mga creative gift ideas ang pwede mong gawin para hindi puro pera ang iyong ireregalo ngayong Pasko?

Kung gusto mo matutong magtipid, please join me at my YouTube channel CHINK POSITIVE.

 

Chinkee Tan

An actor turned businessman, Chinkee Tan once became part of the 80s group Hawi Boys of actor Randy Santiago. In 1994, he decided to quit showbiz and enter into the world of business. He got involved in the industries of Sales, Publishing and Consultancy. Now, Chinkee is known as the anchor of his Sunday radio program on 92.3 NewsFM, Chink Positive, an author of 10 best selling books, a social media influencer, a wealth coach, and one of the country’s most sought after motivational speakers.