Most of us probably read about the winners of the lottery that netted two Michigan men $266 million dollars. Not bad pay days, even after dividing the $266 million into two, $133 million pay checks. Now we all know that the government gets their chunk, so reduce that $133 million to, let’s say, $90 million and then you start thinking about what to do with all of your money…that’s when the interesting discussion starts.
Imagine if you had that money, all $90 million dollars of it (earning $1.8 million per year in interest with a 2% savings account- I’d bet the bank would give you two toasters for opening that account). Would you continue the lifestyle or the career that you have today (assuming all that scratch was already in the bank)? I listen to people who chat about lottery winnings and they use the topic as a catalyst for sharing dreams, goals, and aspirations as it relates to all of the things they would like to do in life, but might not have the opportunity to do for various reasons. Some people talk about setting their kids up for life and the pressure that would relieve. Some talk about cars and vacation homes. Some talk about starting businesses and some talk about helicopters picking them up for their morning ride around town (o.k. – I thought it would be cool, just once, to drop my kids off at school from our helicopter, but I know it’s not practical).
I think we’d all be lying if we hadn’t been part of that game a number of times with a number of different people and what I find so intriguing are the number of dreams people have that never get pursued.
My son’s hockey coach approached me the other day and inquired about my writing. He noticed one of my blog titles on my personal email signature and asked “what the writing was all about”. I shared with him that I used to write an industry blog for my last employer and that I had aspirations of writing and speaking for a living. After giving him my quick response, I dove back down to sea level and resumed my routine of answering emails on my blackberry as the kids skated around the rink.
Cliff grabbed my attention again and asked, “Why don’t you write and speak then” as if it were so simple and illogical that someone who wants something wouldn’t go get it and that’s when it hit me…
Most of our goals, targets and dreams that get outlined when playing the “what would I do if I won a BAJILLION dollars” game might be more achievable than we think. I know this because I am a man who has run a marathon, but is not built like a marathoner. I am the son of a woman who wanted to live through cancer and did and I am the brother of a man who went from renting moonwalks for a living at age 22 to becoming the Chief Operating Officer of an incredibly profitable entertainment business by age 34, so I guess most things are closer to our reach than we may give credit.
Thanks Cliff. I appreciate your honest and logical question. I am writing, maybe not getting paid to do it yet, but enjoying every minute of the writing I do. If I stay persistent enough and someday complete that book or have an article published, I’ll make sure to remember that it was your question that helped keep me on track with my personal dreams and vision. To the rest of you, if you happen to be reading this and think about running, or teaching, or retiring, or changing careers, or any other myriad of “lotto list goals”, choose one, make up a concrete plan of steps to take which will get you closer to your goal and begin pursuing. You’ll surprise yourself, I promise that.