The Golden Rule In Personal Finance


“We have committed the golden rule to our memory; let us now commit it to life.”­—Edwin Markham

Life is a constant change. We feel these around us. They may or may not have bearing on our existence, yet, to some people, there are major shifts that  intimately affect their being. Are we comfortable with the idea of change or do we feel that the constant change means constant uncertainty?

The dynamic relationship of a person with his life experiences brings a lot of changes. It may also have a direct impact on one’s financial condition.

Changes like birth, life and death involve decisions. Decisions are always significant like whenever one leaves the family to work abroad for a better future or when buying a new car or in welcoming a new member in the family, to transfer to a bigger house or to save for the education of the little ones.

More often than not, the changes that occur are mostly predictable because they come in cycles.

However, the adverse impact related to these changes often disrupts the normalcy of life, especially from the financial viewpoint.

The life of a common Filipino is a good example of change. Filipinos are a friendly people able to keep smooth interpersonal relationship with others. Most leave the country to provide their loved ones a better life. So, aside from the various psychological makeup, Filipinos play different life roles as parent, daughter/son, brother/sister, friend, employee, spouse and the like. While the shifting of roles and the change that comes with it can go on and on, it is interesting that each life role accords its own financial role, not to mention complications, too.

The sad plight of our kababayan who came back to the Philippines after working for so many years abroad with no savings and hunted down by creditors is a familiar story. They are the common example of people who regard the present as the moment at which they have finally become who they are the rest of their lives—but fail to succeed.

Change may be complicated, but we don’t need to feel that constant change equals constant uncertainty.

We often notice that most overseas workers are not prepared to go back to the Philippines despite the end of their work contract.

The hard work of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) does not equal the skills they need to achieve financial freedom. Although they earn more, they are caught in a cycle of financial instability and uncertainty.

The have to have the skills to achieve their financial goals as solution to the uncertainty.

However, not everyone is born with a natural talent to handle their own finances. There are but few who are fortunate, who can effortlessly manage their finances and succeed to fulfill their financial goals. They are those who practice financial emotional qoutient (FEQ). It is FEQ that helps people to manage their finances and financial goals properly. The certainty of change does not distress them.

The golden rule of personal finance is to understand one’s FEQ. There may be numerous financial resources and investment vehicles available, but a sound FEQ will make the difference between emotions that affect their financial decisions and to label them accordingly. Consequently, the emotional information will provide guidance in making sound financial decisions.

The knowledge of FEQ can lead OFWs to the road of certainty. Life’s constant changes no longer mean uncertainty.


Zell Sulit, RFP, is a registered financial planner. He is a founding member of the Psychological Empowerment to Resources and Aspirations Inc. To learn more about financial planning, attend the 65th RFP program this October. To inquire, e-mail at or text <name><e-mail><RFP> at 0917-9689774.


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