“If you won that lottery jackpot, what would you do with the money?” My mom and I had just crossed the border from our non-lottery state into one that sells tickets and has a billboard with the current jackpot just across the state line. It was a dollar figure that had a couple of commas in it.
It’s a fun thing to think about, winning a large lottery jackpot or Publisher’s Clearinghouse, and what could be done with that money. Common answers are charity, give to family, pay off debts, travel, and then there are other expensive projects that would be fun and rewarding to sponsor. Many of these dreams do require a lot of money and can only be funded by a multi-comma dollar amount.
But, what if there was a small-scale version of those dreams that could happen? It would be nice if all these acts of kindness weren’t kept on hold just because they couldn’t be carried out on a large scale.
Take charity, for example. Just because I can’t give a sizable donation doesn’t mean I shouldn’t give a little more here and there when I can. The feeling of joy that comes from knowing I am helping an organization carry out a mission I am passionate about isn’t necessarily proportionate to the gift. Knowing I did something, not nothing, makes me smile.
Giving to family. I’m sure they would much rather have a gift that needs to be claimed on next year’s taxes. But, if there is a real need that may go unmet, I can skip eating out or some other form of entertainment to help make this happen. Or, if money is too tight for me, I can donate time, transportation, or some other resource.
Debts can gradually be paid down. Travel can be scaled back, maybe by renting the beach home for which someone else is paying the mortgage, taxes, and insurance. There may be someone else who has the same expensive project in mind, and has already started some of that groundwork and may be looking for a helper to carry it out.
I tend to get into an all-or-nothing mentality. If I can’t fulfill that dream on the large scale I envision, I don’t pursue it. That’s nonsense. There is so much good in this world waiting to be done. I shouldn’t wait on a large cardboard check to get started.