Whether you're 18 and finally gaining some independence or you're like me, who's still building her emergency fund at 30, it's never too late to begin your personal finance journey. And if you don't know where to start, there are actually *a lot* resources out there: Charm de Leon's Ready2Adult PH YouTube channel, for instance, covers the basics of budgeting, credit card management, and even stock investments (a favorite of mine).
As of writing, Ready2Adult PH has over 70,000 YouTube subscribers and around 40,000 Facebook group members! Charm posted her first video—tips on how she tripled her savings—in September 2019. She uploaded around 10 videos but her full-time job was keeping her busy because it was the 'ber months. In January 2020, the 27-year-old decided to start a Facebook group right before her annual "No Spend" Month, which usually happens in February.
Ready2Adult PH Facebook group
Charm told Cosmopolitan in an exclusive interview, "I decided to make a Facebook group where we can hold ourselves accountable to this challenge because a lot of people wanted to try it out. And it just really picked up the whole February...in March, lockdown happened. There were a lot of people who revisited the group and [were] thankful for the 'No Spend' Month because they got to prepare for the lockdown...We did a lot of crash course series in the Facebook group, letting people be more productive while staying at home." It became a really close-knit community with people giving each other adulting advice.
She went back to uploading videos on YouTube during the pandemic, and she watched her YouTube channel and Facebook grow over the past year.
Charm de Leon's personal finance journey
In her video, "My Entrepreneurship Journey," we find out that Charm's always had a passion for business. In grade school, she sold candies, stickers, and pastillas to her classmates, and even rented some of her magazines out (P1 per day). In high school, she made her *first* financial mistake by buying mp3s with her own money without understanding her market. She started helping out with tuition when she entered college, so she juggled a lot of side hustles: running an Instagram shop, modeling, and taking photos of clothes she pulled out, to name a few.
But believe it or not, she hasn't always been the best with money. An architect by profession, Charm realized that despite having a good salary and two years of experience, she didn't have any savings or an emergency fund. So in 2017, she started tracking her expenses and figuring out her financial situation.
She told Cosmo, "I had a lot of anxiety because I didn't have a game plan just yet. The reality dawned on me. If something happens to me right now, is my family going to be okay? 'Cause I'm the breadwinner. Are my businesses going to be okay? Ever since I've laid out what I plan to do, I went back to the peace of mind that I had before, but I wasn't ignorant anymore. I had this awakening without having to go through something tragic. You can't really get out the worry you will have. Right now, I know solid yung plan ko, but for people, it's natural to be worried. I feel like that's also something that I use to drive me forward."
Hear more about Charm's story below:
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