Matteo Guidicelli: What I learned about being financially independent
MANILA, Philippines – Once upon a time, Matteo Guidicelli was an aspiring go-kart racer who dreamed of becoming the first Filipino Formula One driver. But then his life journey took a series of unexpected twists and turns. These days, most people know him as an actor, singer and triathlete.
Now he can also add 'financial literacy advocate' to his growing list of accomplishments. On November 4, Sun Life Financial announced that Matteo would be the new spokesperson against investment scams for Sun Life Asset Management Company, Inc.
Even if he’s only 25 years old, Matteo is already fully behind the wheel when it comes to investing his hard-earned money. His transition from the racetrack to the big screen has taught him a lot about financial independence – and he wants to share these lessons with his fellow millennials.
Be disciplined and practical
Matteo credits his father for teaching him the value of hard work early on in life.
He recalls, “We’d go to Malaysia and if my times were bad on the race track, he’d get angry at me and he’d tell me, ‘We flew all the way here and this is how you perform?’ Moments like that were hard but to come back and think about it, he was teaching me discipline and how to put my determination into something.”
His father also taught him the value of making wise choices.
Naturally, Matteo carried over these insights to the way he handles his money.
“[My dad] teaches me all the ways on how to spend, how to save. So every single month, I [plot out] a chart; I see all my expenses, all my earnings.”
Be open to new opportunities
When Matteo was 16, his family moved from Cebu to Manila so he could further pursue his racing career. He soon found a manager who helped him find sponsors.
“After a few years, [my manager] said, ‘Matteo, do you want to try showbiz?’” He recalls. “I told him I didn’t want to try showbiz, I wanted to stick to racing. But he said I should try it and that it would be better for me.”
Matteo eventually heeded his manager’s advice and decided to try something completely new. The result for him was a newfound passion and career path.
“I put my foot in a little bit in showbiz. I did a show called Go Kada Go (Let’s Go) and I enjoyed it. From there I started slowly doing it and I started joining the theater in school and I started singing in school. In my senior year of high school, I really said ‘I want to do this.’”
Earning from his acting jobs further gave Matteo the means to reward himself, especially on his days off.
Stay grounded and always think ahead
The temptations of celebrity surround Matteo wherever he goes – and so does the expectation to live a lavish lifestyle.
“I always have to remind myself that all of this is just temporary,” Matteo says. “We’re living the life, we’re having fun but this is just now. This is not going to be forever so we have to plan our forever; we have to plan our future for later.”
Now, whenever he considers an expensive purchase, Matteo always keeps the bigger picture in mind.
He says, “There are moments when you spend, spend, spend but then you think to yourself, ‘Is this what you really need? Are you going to have this 10 years from now?’”
Surround yourself with people you can trust
Matteo is always on the lookout for ways to invest his money wisely (READ: 5 habits of successful investors). Following his father’s footsteps, one of the avenues he’s exploring is entrepreneurship – a pursuit that he says is built on credibility and trust.
“My dad always told me never to do business with your best friend,” he says. “But basically I try to look for somebody that I can really trust, somebody that’s very professional; that’s the most important thing. And to know that that person or that establishment; that their credibility is up there.”
In his personal life Matteo also builds his relationships on trust, especially when it comes to his money. A lot of people, celebrities or otherwise, have been swindled by financial scams.
While he’s generous to his closest friends, Matteo always keeps an eye out for anyone looking to take advantage.
“One thing I’ve realized when it comes to money is that it’s very important that we have someone we can trust. But others don’t have somebody as trustworthy to guide them through their financial journey, and so they end up entrusting their money to someone who’s only out to scam them,” shares Matteo.
Whether it’s roaring down a racetrack or flashing a smile for the cameras, Matteo tackles every goal the same way: with determination and a level-headed attitude, backed by wisdom from people he trusts. – Rappler.com
Sun Life Asset Management Company, Inc. (SLAMCI) is Sun Life Financial Philippines’ fund manager and principal distributor of nine (9) mutual funds collectively called as the Sun Life Prosperity Funds. To know more, visit www.sunlifefunds.com.