Letters of Youth


/ 27 November 2020

Proverbs 13:11 “Dishonest money dwindles, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.”

In the adaptation of modern culture, people become more extravagant in managing their money without understanding the long-term consequences of it. Apart from this, the frugality was thrown out of their heads, and only the constant use of money was in their heads. In the previous year, the Philippines battled for the inadequacy of financial literacy among all the Filipinos, which culminated in widespread financial illiteracy. In 2015, based on a survey by the World Bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) noted in a statement last year that only three out of seven financial literacy-related questions could be answered correctly by Filipino adults. These questions were about basic numeracy, calculating compound interest, inflation fundamentals, and diversification of investment, though 2% of Filipino adults were able to answer all seven correctly. It has come to the point that the number of financial illiteracy cases has risen year after year due to the troubling reports that many Filipinos are still in financial illiteracy, including lack of basic skills to know how smart money, lack of financial awareness, and other factors should be. The country’s financial regulator reported that the alarmingly low level of financial literacy starts with poor childhood education that lasts until the age of adulthood. In the world of financial illiteracy, it is undeniable that this would have a huge effect on everyone’s future, not only at this moment but also in the next century. This could worsen even more if people never change their attitude of wasting their money unconsciously and playing their money unknowingly.

Behind the strain of all the Filipinos on low financial literacy, the government and other agencies have provided appropriate steps and plans for those who are members of financial illiteracy to restore their standard of living. However, this particular issue would be improved more if we initiate the change inside ourselves. But the question is, how can we be smart money in a digital world?

It’s not too late to be smart money in a digital world if we have the confidence and perseverance to do it. The key to this dilemma would be easier if we begin to recalibrate our mind as a responsible person. By beginning this way, we need to change our bad habits of spending too much, and instead, prudently save our money even if it’s big or small. We should always be thrifty, particularly because money is very difficult to find nowadays. If there is part-time work near our place that seems to be acceptable to us, then we can take it directly, because it is also beneficial to add our wealth. Second, we should build our financial plan to balance our money wisely, and we’ll place our allowance or profits there, followed by our everyday expenditures, to formulate all our expenditures to get how much we’ll have left. At this point, we can save more money because we already knew where our money was going. Third, we should always be vigilant, too, if some opportunities are waiting for us. Since this will also serve as the vehicle that will lead us into being a smart individual with money. Much like attending meetings or seminars on raising our quality of living by taking systematic steps and enriching our financial aspects.

We can have a productive life if we are also knowledgeable in the field of finance. Being an average citizen does not mean that we are already far from civilization we can still adopt new things, particularly the one way that could boost our financial status is by knowing things. According to a new essay on financial literacy published by the National Financial Educators Council, one of the keys to being money-savvy is learning how to distinguish “needs” from “wants.” Getting a viable investment plan in place is the only way we can meet our financial objectives. And to save more money, we need to know the difference between these two definitions. Because often people don’t know the sense of it right, they feel uncertain about what the real difference is. That’s why we have to inculcate that we have to use our resources to meet our “needs” and just buy “wants” when we have extra money set aside so that we can have a great balance in handling our money perfectly.

Youth today have no stable money or improvement based on their financial level since they are vulnerable to complicated financial decisions. Also, to avoid this, financial literacy must be taught at school. This will help all students improve their financial capacity, enhance their cognitive development, and develop their mentality of becoming smart money individuals. However, financial education is not only the only thing that should be mandated at school but should also be present at home. Since parents are the primary influence on their children, that’s why they should begin to educate their children about financial aspects and introduce them to money and smart financial decision-making so that they can be effective and handle their financial futures.

How we can be money smart in a digital world?

By just following all the above steps, we might be smart money in this digital world. Believing in the strength of ourselves is going to drive us to be prudent. Money is crucial in our daily lives, and without it, we can’t survive. “The wealth obtained by greed will be reduced, but he who gathers by work will increase.” This is related to Proverbs 13:11, which says that we should persevere in our lives in the pursuit of a progressive financial system, and if we work hard on it, we will also reap the fruit of labor. Starting our life with a happier outlook is going to make us more motivated. Becoming a smart money person in this digital world is an indispensable thing for us to change our lives. So let us all put this in our minds, “saving our money is like saving our lives.”