Determination, discipline, and direction are necessary to manage one’s personal and financial affairs, both in failure and in success, according to Manulife Philippines brand ambassador and Olympic gold-winning weightlifter Hidilyn F. Diaz and actress and entrepreneur Bea Alonzo.  

The two Filipinas were the main guests of financial services group Manulife’s March 24 webinar celebrating International Women’s Month. They shared tips on how to build a successful mindset, properly handle finances, and care for one’s mental health.  

“Before I even won my gold medal, I was already gold-driven, determined, and disciplined,” explained Ms. Diaz, who powered through three separate Olympics before she finally clinched the gold in 2021.   

This kind of mindset also helped her with her financial goals, she added. A failure that she had to overcome was her poor handling of the money that came with the 2016 silver medal win — when the winnings came, she was overwhelmed and spent too much.  

Ms. Diaz vowed not to do the same with her money from the 2021 gold medal win.  

Nandoon na yung pagiging kuripot at kailangan mag-allot (There’s now a sense of being stingy and a need to allot) for investments and for family,” she said. “I now have a financial advisor.”  

For award-winning actress Ms. Alonzo, setting personal targets gave her something to look forward to and work towards, whether it was in terms of career or finances.  

“I’m very much like Hidilyn. I’m goal oriented. Kapag meron akong gusto (If I want something), I make sure I plan ahead and I make sure I achieve that goal. It’s important to have the drive and motivation,” she explained.  

Making wise investments, living within one’s means, and planning where to put money were her guiding principles as she earned more and more throughout her life.  

However, what both successful Filipino women agreed on was the conviction not to stop setting more goals even after major achievements.  

“I’m thinking of what’s next. Maraming nagasasabi na pwede na (Many people say it’s enough that), you’re a gold medalist,” said Ms. Diaz, “But I don’t want to stop yet.”  

She confirmed that she still plans to compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics.  

Meanwhile, Ms. Alonzo expressed that she has plenty she wants to do aside from maintaining her acting career: “My dreams don’t stop here, I have other dreams too aside from being an actress. I’m also a businesswoman and entrepreneur.”  

Kimberly Anne Zandueta, a Manulife financial adviser, noted that both Filipinas are good examples of successful women who learned to manage their finances.  

“Remember the 50-30-20 rule,” she reminded. “Divide and prioritize your income this way — 50% on needs, 30% on wants, and 20% set aside as savings.” — Bronte H. Lacsamana