Simple Is Not Always Easy

Simple Is Not Always Easy

Jan 13, 2021

Decades ago, in my first job as an analyst at the Far East Bank & Trust Company, then the most profitable bank in the country, I remember how our boss would ask for sensitivity analyses.

A sensitivity analysis is a method of studying how the different values of a variable affect our projections. In other words, it answers the question “What if?” What if inflation, interest, capacity utilization, etc. are at these different levels?

Our boss was the smart, nerdy type with beautiful handwriting who used a lot of loops in the way he edited our credit studies. However, at that time, he was not yet very knowledgeable about using computers, and he sort of had that idea that since it was a computer, it was merely clicking a button. So, he would always ask us to do these sensitivity analyses and say, “That’s fairly easy to do! It’s very simple.”

Moreover, and I’m revealing my Jurassic age here, we still didn’t have one computer per employee then. We had a total of two desktops with green screen shared by over a dozen analysts who had to sign up to schedule their computer time in order to use the programs Lotus 1-2-3 and Word Star. 🙂  We did our write-up handwritten on yellow pad, and our initial projections on columnar pads.

I share that story to point out that simple is not always easy. And sometimes if we don’t really go through the actual application of a knowledge (like my boss), we tend to believe that because something is simple, it is always easy to do it.

Basic Laws of Money

The Basic Laws of Money are simple.

  1. Pay yourself first.
  2. Get only into a business that you understand, and seek advice only from competent people.
  3. Make your gold work for you. Make an army of golden slaves before you buy luxury.

(To see short videos on the above, click any of these links. –  1, 2, 3)

These laws are so simple that even a kid can understand them. And yet, a lot of us, adults, just can’t get to implement them? It’s the same reason: Simple is not always easy.

Other instances showing simple is not always easy

It is not only in the simple laws of money that we struggle with. It’s the same for the other important aspects of life. I always get a kick when I ask the participants of my talks to honestly answer the question, “Am I guilty of this?” and show the following images. Maybe, I should ask you to answer them too.

Are you or anyone you know guilty of texting while driving?

Are you guilty of eating unhealthy food?

Are you guilty of ditching exercise in favor of binge watching anything?

Most of the time, we already know what we are supposed to do. We know the simple rules of life, of health, wealth, and relationships. And the basic laws of these other important aspects of life are very similar to the basic laws of money. But they are not easy to implement. That is the reason why FQ Book comes in a series.

The second installment dissects the reason why even if we already know what to do, we end up not doing the right thing. It is important for us to understand how our human wiring works.

As we set our goals for 2021, it will be helpful to see what our respective weaknesses are. They are discussed in the 14 behavioral biases that we routinely do. Knowing them will help us design what would make it easier for us to follow the simple rules of life.

Cheers to high FQ!


1. To understand how our human wiring works in our important decisions on money and other important aspects of life, read FQ Book 2, a 2-in-1 book. After years of studying, writing, rewriting, some more writing and rewriting, ? I’m happy to announce that it’s finally accomplished, my new baby! To pre-order, please click link

To know more about it, watch this short video .

2. I will be the keynote speaker for the JA Philippines CCFA Awarding on January 15, 2021

3. I will be one of the speakers at the InvestaFest, an event happening from January 21 – 24, 2021.

4. On January 23, 2021, I will speak at the Viviamo Women Event entitled Women Being Well.

5. Want to start the year by knowing your FQ Score? Take the FQ Test and map out your 2021 FQ Plan. Scan the QR code or click the link

6. If you want to enhance your FQ through stories, check out FQ Mom books, available in print (with autograph) and ebook versions.