Is winning always good? (not talking about the America’s Cup although that would be really good!)

September 24, 2013

Good morning and happy Monday,

Here’s hoping today is the day we bring the Auld mug home! Sorry for my friends who are not in NZ, but we have been on high alert for winning the America’s Cup for days and days.

However, it’s not that winning that I am talking about, it’s Lotto. The Powerball has jackpotted again and will be worth $30,000,000, this Saturday to the lucky winner(s)! But are they really lucky?

I’m sure that many of you, like me, will have dreamed of winning Lotto and what we would do with it. New home, cars, help out the family and travel are all popular daydreams. We get quite giddy with anticipation.

Then it’s drawn and yet again our hopes are doused and we go back to the reality of our lives.

Having never won Lotto, I really don’t have any idea what it would feel like to win $30 million or even smaller amounts, but I can imagine it gives greater clarity to those dreams as well as excitement, shock etc! I wonder if it also causes anyone to worry or be anxious about what it really means to their futures. It should.

On average about 90% of lottery winners are broke within 5 years. It seemed like that money would last forever, but they kept dipping into it and then one day there was no longer anything left to dip into! So what to do?

An article in the New York Times suggests that you need to put something between you and stupid!

My suggestion is that you really need to get sound advice, before you do anything at all. By that I mean, investment advice from a certified financial planner, include your accountant if you have one and also get some emotional/psychological support. This win would make an enormous impact on your life emotionally and it is smart to be ready for that.

I, like other Financial Recovery counsellors, am qualified to assist people who come into sudden wealth. Whilst I have written about lottery winners here, sudden wealth can include divorce settlements and inheritance. You might think that neither would happen to you and, if they did, it wouldn’t be worth worrying about. Everything is relative and if you have a sudden injection of cash as above, or even if you sell property, the temptation to just take out a “little bit” can be huge. Those “little bits” add up and before you know it there is a big hole in your cash.

This will be a bit late this morning as I took a break for the first race! It’s not over yet and we will have to have race two this morning as well! The nerves!

Have a great week everyone and I do hope that one of you is lucky on Saturday night! Just be smart if it’s you!

Go Team NZ and get this job done!!

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