Category Archives: Money


Do you always have to fight to get the things you want?

Do you always haggle to get what you want from people, especially with your husband or wife? For almost 25 years of being married, I never have to compromise anything to my wife. I will tell you how we kept our marriage strong at the end of this blog.

If you are in a situation where conflict is inevitable, is to compromise the only solution to end the conflict?

What does it really mean when you compromise?

From the dictionary, compromise means a settlement of differences in which each side makes concessions.  It is the result of such a settlement.

It’s been said that those who compromise reduce the quality, value, or degree of something, such as your ideals and beliefs.  Compromise weakens your principle and it reduces your standards.

But, is to compromise really a solution?

In relationships, to compromise seems to solve a lot of issues. On the other hand, unhealthy compromise feels a lot like a disaster especially when you’re the only one giving up things and getting nothing or not much back.

I’m not in favor of compromise. I will avoid it as much as I can whether they are healthy or positive. The scriptures says, “But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil.” (Matthew 5:37)

If I have to compromise in a relationship, I do it in a healthy and positive way that would result to both parties feeling valued and fulfilled. I will give you some examples:

1. When you compromise, both parties need to give their share. Before you ask for someone to give up something, be prepared to offer something to the table yourself.

2. Do your best to engage in positive compromise rather than in a sacrificial way. One person does not have to suffer more than the other. Suffering is painful but it becomes positive when shared.

3. Compromise should only be used when you’re not angry.  Discussions is achieved better when you’re both calm and feeling open. Negative compromise with resentment built into is unhealthy in both the short and long term.  People who engage in negative compromise always end up bitter in the end.

4. Set everything on the table and know what is negotiable and non-negotiable before you start talking.  Be flexible on the things that are negotiable. For the things that are non-negotiable, state your reason why and how important it is for you to stick to it.

5. Ask for the other parties help. From the famous line of the movie Gerry McGuire he said, “Help me help you.”

We all know that every person understands the need to compromise from time to time. Your ability to consider the needs of others as reasonable is necessary in a happy life but there will be occasions when you should never settle for anything less than exactly what you want.

Although positive compromises gives results to move forward, in some situations, it’s best not to move forward at all whether this could be your work, business, relationship, or sometimes even your dream.

I’ll tell you when you should stop compromising.

1. When you try to save something that shouldn’t be saved.  When you are faced with losing a relationship that you desperately want to keep but you continue to compromise in an unhealthy way, this will just create more division.  When you compromise with a toxic person who continues to hurt you, they will eventually destroy you. There will always be problems even after you compromise. The only way to stop your pain is to end the relationship itself.

2. When you are being manipulated by the lies of other people. Compromise can be used in a dishonest way by making the other person think you are working on a problem, when in fact you are being manipulated in the situation to their own advantage. Don’t put too much effort in helping people who does not want to be helped. This is not because you don’t care, it’s because they don’t.

3. Avoid compromising when you know you are mentally and spiritually weak. One of the hardest things to do is to be assertive to get your needs, while at the same time being sensitive and willing to engage in a give and take. Some people think this is humility.  Humility is not being weak.  When you appear weak and unable to express your needs in a healthy manner, you allow yourself to be lowered in a relationship.  This is weakness, not humility.

4. When compromise is a failure to meet one’s own needs. When you are willing to be unhappy so that the others are happy, then that’s the beginning of your end. Compromise should always be undertaken gladly and in an honest and open way with compassion and understanding. It should never be undertaken to abuse anybody.

Finally, there are some areas when you don’t compromise like your investments and your faith.

You don’t place your investments when you know you cannot handle risks.  Do you due diligence and stop when you are unsure – no compromise.

When it comes to our faith, imagine if Jesus compromised his divinity to earthly kingship, Christianity would never exist.  I would not be here writing about faith and money.

At the start of my blog I wrote, I never compromise anything with my wife.  Here is what I have learned in my 25 years of being married – when you cannot get what you want from your wife, don’t try to understand her – but accept her.  This is my secret.

Acceptance is more powerful than compromise because with acceptance, you embrace everything. Compromise is accepting only 50%.

Believe me, you will last together for the rest of your life because there’s no compromise in acceptance.

Wishing you all the best in life – without compromise!

God is the greatest!

Make Each Day Count

About three weeks ago, I drove more than 1,800 kilometers (about 1100 miles) from Vancouver, Canada to San Francisco and back for 10 days.

I wrote this blog in Ashland, Oregon. It was our 4th day driving. Here is a map picture of where we have driven.


Vancouver, Canada to Astoria Oregon (Astoria is the first town in the State of Oregon after the State of Washington via Highway 101)


Astoria, Oregon to Florence, Oregon (scenic drive by the beach)


Florence, Oregon to Ashland, Oregon (Ashland is the last major town in the State of Oregon before the State of California via Interstate 5)

If you will ask me two words to describe how are we doing at this point of our trip – SIMPLY AMAZING!

A week before we left Vancouver, I can’t help but count the time and distance that I will be driving. I was a bit uneasy because I will be driving alone. I asked myself – will I be okay? Will I fall asleep while driving? Will it be boring?

In addition, my wife and I would mull over the more important matters like leaving our sons behind, our business, our clients, our community events, and our financial obligations and so on!

When I think about these things, I could not avoid apprehensions.

But when I start thanking God and counting my blessings like;

Thank God for blessing us with two sons who are now responsible adults who can take care of themselves;

Thank God for blessing us with very good business colleagues who we can rely on if we need their help while we are away;

Thank God for blessing us with clients who trust us and never gets tired of introducing us to other people;

Thank God for blessing us with community servants who we can rely on to continue doing our work;

And most specially, we thank our God who always exceed His provisions so we can take care of our financial obligations and enjoy more of these amazing vacations and so on; life becomes exciting!

When you have an exciting life, you make each day count!

You can change many things in your life only if you can change the way you perceive things. Like a poster I saw in Oregon that says, “Don’t count the days of your life but rather make each day count.”

I have missed many opportunities in my life because I was counting the days and not making each day count.

When I was younger, I would always say these words on our way home after a fun vacation – “back to reality.”

Today, I discovered that I was not being fair to myself when I utter these words because the vacations I took are not fantasies – they are not an escape from reality. My vacations brings me good memories to inspire and empower me in the present.

I found out that when you go for a vacation to simply escape, going “back to reality” can easily consume you.

Remember, vacations are not an escape to reality – it is an experience. Your experience should make you excited everyday which helps you make each of your day count.

Yes, reality can sometimes be painful but these pains should make you a better person.

From my old blogs, I have shared many painful experiences in investing in the stock market. But even though I have bad experiences, I continue to invest in stocks because now I can say that I have matured from the pains I experienced from the past. Today, from the lessons I’ve learned, I know when to be cautious and when to be aggressive in my investments. Before I count my losses but now I make my every investment count.

So whether it’s about money or faith or simply dealing with your everyday life, for each day that comes, make it count.

By the way, do you why some people count their days?

People who count their days are the people who are trapped in a routine. If you do things routinely, you cannot help but to watch the clock ticking until it’s time to get out. They are like prisoners who counts the days until they get released.

I was able to experience this in my first job as a records clerk employee at Caritas Manila. My job was simple; if someone needs a record, I pull the file out from the filing cabinet and when someone returns it, I return it in their proper place.

Considering I’m an expert DJ at that time playing records, this is definitely not what I want to do but it puts money in my pocket to feed my single, young and free lifestyle!

Anyway, when I time-in at 8am, I would start counting the hours, the minutes and the seconds until 5pm. Apparently, some of us are doing the same thing. Thirty minutes before time-off, excitement would fill the office and everyone can’t wait to go home. The next day, the same routine happens again.

Sounds familiar?

It’s a pity to know how people feel so disempowered to leave their routine simply because they think they have no way to out. Their routine has become their security – their comfort zone. For them, it is the most comfortable place to be.

But you know what, even inside a routine, you can do something special to make your day count. Let me tell you how I made my routine exciting.

During my vacant hours, I started doing some animation in my computer to promote our department. I work in the CREDIT department. It’s not credit as in accounting work. Our department do the research and analysis, computerization, automation and record keeping for Caritas Manila’s social works. I cannot remember the formal meaning of CREDIT but I do remember the bosses calling us Circle of Rational Eccentrics Doing Irrational Tasks – CREDIT (we were all wacky but we all do a job well done).

Doing work that is outside my job description made my routine exciting! I started to work as if I’m part of something bigger rather than simply being the records clerk.

Instead of counting hours, I made each day count!

And this is also my wish for you – that you may break free from any routine that you’re trapped in – to stop counting your days and start making every day count!

God is the greatest!