Getting up close and personal with your favorite celebrity is a rare opportunity for any fan. College courtside reporter Angelique Manto, an avid fan of Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, luckily got the chance to spend a day with the beauty queen recently.
Angelique has had high regard for Pia since she began her Binibining Pilipinas journey. So much is Angelique’s admiration that she looks up to Pia, not just with her advocacies, but also her fashion and money sense.
“She’s a huge role model for me and I can only dream of a chance to meet her and tell her how much she has impacted my life,” said Angelique in a vlog post on her Facebook page.
The courtside reporter’s deep appreciation for Pia didn’t go unnoticed. BDO, Pia’s bank, saw how much Angelique adored the beauty queen that it gave her a chance to do not just a meet-and-greet with the country’s third Miss Universe, but also become part of her latest BDO shoot.
Since being crowned as the most beautiful woman in the universe, Pia’s days have been undeniably hectic, yet she remains gracious of her time to bond with fans like Angelique. And like a true queen, Pia has the natural charm to inject little gems of wisdom even in seemingly casual banter.
“Prior to training for [Binibining Pilipinas], I really wasn’t that confident. Alam mo ‘yun, you wake up and parang, ‘I’m too chubby,’ ‘I don’t like my make-up,’ ‘I don’t like what I look like.’ Parang you don’t like everything about you. That’s normal,” Pia told Angelique.
“[I then started] to learn that [there] are petty things that I am worrying about and parang, ‘What for?’ It’s really true when they say pwede namang wala kang make-up, pwede namang hindi ka masyadong nakaayos, pero if you’re happy, like ‘yun yung best [look mo], basta masaya ka lang,” Pia continued.
Pia goes on to tell Angelique that things were no different for the beauty queen in her younger days, as she became her family’s breadwinner at age 11.
Given her situation, she had no other recourse, but to develop independence. To do this, Pia not only joined beauty pageants, but also went into acting, where she picked up an important life lesson.
“[I learned to] accept and adjust. [There’s] no time to sulk. Of course, you [can have] a moment [na isipin] mo na ‘Okay, this is what I need to do next time, so I [won’t] make that mistake again,’” Pia shared.
Accepting and adjusting are Pia’s remarkable attitudes that truly show her never giving up on her dreams.
“My acting career didn’t push through so well when I was younger, [kaya I tried Binibini two times]. [I reached] this level of maturity and preparation and everything made sense after that moment,” Pia said.
Never missing out to stay on top
Intrigued by how Pia breezes through her demanding schedule, Angelique asked for tips on how she could stay on top of things without getting too worked up.
“As much as possible, I like to feel like I’m really in control of whatever’s going on around me, I have to do it myself. So, [time management matters],” Pia stressed.
For Pia, her smartphone helps her get things done. In particular, she relies heavily on two apps – her alarm app and the BDO app.
“[My] alarm clock [on my phone] is useful,” Pia said. It constantly reminds her that she has a lot more things to accomplish. That way, she makes sure she doesn’t miss out on every single activity on her to-do list – from waking up early to setting appointments.
Equally important for Pia is the BDO app. As she now rarely has time to go to the bank, it’s important that she has a way to monitor her savings and expenses.
With this app, Pia is still able to have complete banking experience because she still can pay her credit card bill even while in a shoot or when she has pocket free time.
“For instance, I just got back from Dubai and the app really helped me pay my credit card bills while I was there ‘cause I needed to pay for my hotel,” she narrated.
As for keeping an eye on her savings, it works wonders. This is especially important for Pia, who very well knows the value of her earnings. “[The app is really helpful because I’m able] to check my balance if everything’s okay.” Pia added.
Never missing out on opportunities to learn
One of the important nuggets of wisdom Pia shared with Angelique is having the attitude to constantly learn, especially on the more practical aspects of life such as handling available resources wisely.
Being a breadwinner at a young age allowed Pia to develop her money management skills through experience, but the beauty queen credits her openness to learning from other people as one of the things that make her wiser when it comes to making crucial life decisions.
She fondly remembers her pageant trainer’s advice, “Kunwari, ito yung sweldo mo. 20% niyan, itabi mo na agad, and then the 80%, you can use to pay your bills, for your rent, the gas, the necessities, everything even your shopping will come from the [80%]. Then the [20%], just put it aside. And then every month, ipunin mo lang nang ipunin ‘yun to have that savings, yung security.”
“It’s so effective, [especially] when I was starting in Binibini because I wasn’t earning much, [but setting aside 20% regularly] really helps if my car breaks down, for example or [if I get] sick and I need to pay for my medicine or maybe the hospital bills. Or [kapag nakaipon ka nang malaki, maybe you wanna] reward yourself with something then you can invest. You can invest in maybe in new car, go to that dream holiday you’ve always been wanting to go to.”
On money matters, Pia also gets professional financial guidance from her bank. She looks at BDO as her partner in making sure that her hard-earned money would work harder to secure her and her family’s future.
Never missing out on the important things in life
Pia, just like most millennials, has to keep up with a busier and more demanding lifestyle — all to pursue and realize a dream. While it is easy to get lost and distracted in the daily grind, what keeps her grounded is her family.
The beauty queen advised her fellow millennials that what keeps her going is the belief that the fruits of her hard work are not just for her, but are also for those who helped her reach her life goals. For instance, her saving habit works well for the people she cares about the most.
“I would always put money aside and then it really helps [when] my sister or my mom needs help. May pagkukunan ako,” Pia candidly detailed.
Expecting only to have a short chat and a picture taken, Angelique was ecstatic that she was able to spend a day with her idol. What made her experience unique was that she learned so much from Pia, making her develop a deeper appreciation for the beauty queen.
For Angelique, Pia remains, even after so many years, “confidently beautiful with a heart.”