For years, we never played the lottery. My parents didn’t play, my wife didn’t play, and I didn’t play. I considered it (and still consider it in a way) a waste of money. However, lately, we have played the lottery on several occasions.
While we’re not habitual lottery participants, typically only playing the Mega Millions when there is a large jackpot, we’ve found that there are certain peripheral benefits that surround playing the lottery.
It only takes a dollar to have a chance of winning big in the lottery, and if we have a buck to spare, we figure, why not? The benefits far exceed the financial downsides. Plus, its fun to dream of what we might do with that money should we win. But there is more to playing the lottery than just the dreams the process invokes. And part of the process of playing can help us with the planning of our financial future.
A focus on financial planning
Maybe the most valuable aspect of playing the lottery – even when we don’t win – is the opportunity it provides for financial planning. Considering what we’d do with a million, ten million, a hundred million dollars or more is a good exercise in financial planning. Deciding how that money would be divvied up between debt reduction, savings, real estate, investments, and more can indicate where and how money should be allocated on a smaller scale. It can also help determine risk tolerance as well as how …