MANILA, Philippines - It’s only a few days to go before Christmas. By now, you’re probably all done with your holiday list (and checked it twice!), thoughtfully wrapped presents and prepared them for delivery.
But don’t forget there is still one important person you might want to give a gift to — and that’s yourself.
There is nothing wrong or selfish about giving yourself a gift this Christmas season. It’s good to think of everybody else but it is also true that you can be of greater help to others if you are in good standing — physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. This is why it is important to think of ways to enhance your personal well-being, not just with gifts that give you a temporary high, but with gifts that confer you with something of lasting value.
Gifts of lasting value are those that will allow you to deal with life’s challenges in a better way, and will stay with you forever. These gifts do not tarnish or fade away with time, like that nice It handbag or the latest smart phone model.
Here are a few things that can offer you long-lasting benefits. You may want to consider any of these as a Christmas gift to yourself:
Something for your health.
When the going is good, it’s easy to not give a thought about your health. However, thinking that you will be in good health forever is simply unrealistic. Go for that health check-up and address whatever concerns you may have. Whether it’s failing eyesight that might require top-of-the-line lenses or surgery, or high cholesterol that requires you to enroll in an exercise program, take a good look at how you can ensure that you stay in tiptop shape. Remember that if you are sick, you can’t be of much help to yourself and to others. Possible gifts: a health check-up, medical supplements, enrollment in exercise or wellness programs
Something to protect you.
Life is full of uncertainties, and all you can do is to prepare for some of life’s many challenges. While you can’t anticipate everything that may happen in life, you can, at least, prepare yourself financially for these eventualities. You can start small by protecting some of your financial standing, e.g. insuring your credit card against fraud or theft until you can go on to something bigger like a pension plan to fund a comfortable retirement. Possible gifts: life insurance, medical coverage, credit shield
Something that will grow with your needs.
Have you ever thought of getting yourself something that appreciates in value or that will protect you from inflation? You may want to invest in something that has the potential to increase in value over time — possibly money market placements, bonds, stocks, or even real estate, art, or jewelry. There are various investment vehicles that will meet the varied needs of different individuals, depending on your financial profile, financial goals, your needs and wants, as well as your appetite for risk. Start by scheduling a chat with a financial professional. Possible gifts: mutual funds, unit investment trust funds, stocks, bonds, real estate
Something that will lighten your load.
When was the last time you looked at the things you have and decided on a throw pile and keep pile? Free up space in your closets, book shelves, or find new homes for white elephants. You can do this by yourself, or get family and friends involved in your ‘spring-cleaning’. Not only will you de-clutter your life, you could potentially earn some cash too as one man’s trash can be another man’s treasure. Possible gifts: organizers, more space for things you really want, extra cash earned
Something that will enrich your life.
There are no limits to learning, and no matter what you’ve achieved, you will always find yourself having to continually expand your capabilities or update your skills to keep up with the world. Similarly, there are other aspects of your life that you may want to develop. Give yourself an honest look to determine your needs. You may want to learn a new sport, take up photography as a hobby, see more of the world and experience various cultures through travelling, or get a membership to the country club and meet new people.
Be honest with yourself and project what you would like to be in the next five, ten, or twenty years, or finally get down to pursuing that hobby that you may have been putting off for so long. Possible gift: degree or certificate programs (online and offline), sports lessons, roundtrip airline tickets
Sooner or later, you will find out that these are the gifts that are really worth splurging on, for these are the gifts that keep on giving.
Grow Your Money is an editorial partnership between ABS-CBNnews.com and Citi Philippines to promote financial education and provide helpful information to Filipinos on how to better manage their personal finances.
Visit www.citibank.com.ph for more information.