I’ve Got a Golden Ticket

Photo of Powerball Lottery ticket

If you’ve seen the movie, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, or read the original book, “Charlie & the Chocolate Factory” by Roal Dahl, then you know about the contest to find a Golden Ticket. You might even recall the song, “I’ve Got a Golden Ticket“.

In this song, Grandpa Joe pines away with the lyrics:

I never had a chance to shine
Never a happy song to sing
But suddenly half the world is mine
What an amazing thing
‘Cause I’ve got a golden ticket

Before the Golden Ticket, Grandpa Joe did not get out of bed. He felt he had no reason to. Then, all of a sudden, because of that ticket, he sees possibilities. He gets out of bed, sings and dances around the room. It’s a happy day.

This book was originally published in 1964. Today we have a similar concept to the Golden Ticket. It’s called Powerball.

Admit it. You know you’ve wondered what it would be like to win the big jackpot. How would your life change if you won $447 million dollars like the one lucky winner did on June 10, 2017?

I know you’ve joked about, “When we win the lottery…” We use that phrase often in our household. It’s usually followed by, “It would help if we bought a ticket.” So, recently, I did. The jackpot hit $375 million and I thought, what the heck. Let’s have some fun.

When I buy a ticket (a rare occurrence), I go all in. I put the ticket up on the bulletin board in our kitchen. I actively contemplate what we would do if we won. We talk about it. I write about it in my journal. It inspires a blog post. (Did I just make that ticket tax deductible?) We play lots of “what if” games. We dance around the house singing, “I’ve Got a Golden Ticket”. Hey, if you’re going to play the game right, you have to believe that your ticket could have the winning numbers. You have to go all in.

After the initial excitement dies down, we realize we wouldn’t really want to win that huge jackpot. Sure, it’d be fun to always travel by private jet, to have a vacation home (or two), to buy a new sports car and build a garage to hold it. For a while.

But, you know what? None of these extravagant purchases would make life any better. It would only make it different. When we get past the rush, the burden of dealing with a jackpot of that size becomes palpable.

That’s when the game changes. We start playing another game where we contemplate: if we could define our own jackpot, how big would it be? From there, we start thinking about what changes we could make that would allow us to achieve our more realistic desires without the benefit of a winning lottery ticket.

You don’t have to wait for a Golden Ticket. Chance are, you really can have the life you dream about if you make the choices and take action steps needed to get you there. It’s not going to happen overnight, but it’s there. It is possible.

Of course, if that dream involves winning a huge jackpot, be sure you buy a ticket.