Special thanks to Publishers Clearing House for sponsoring today’s discussion.
When we purchase lottery tickets, I call it “cheap thrills.” I find the entertainment value in dreaming up how we’d spend the money to be worth the $2 we spend on the ticket. This is the same reason why I always enter the Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes. There is no charge to enter, and somebody’s going to win…it could be me! And win or not, it is so much fun to dream.
The current sweepstakes from Publishers Clearing House is AMAZING. It’s called the Win $1 Million plus $5,000 Every Week For Life Mega Prize. And I think you can guess what the prize is, no? You get a check for one million dollars AND you get $5,000 every week for the rest of your life (which adds up to $260,000/year, by the way).
Now, a million dollars is nothing to sneeze at. It will change your life, for sure. But to be honest with you, it isn’t going to RADICALLY change your life. I suppose it could for a brief period of time if you blow through it quickly. But if you use it judiciously, then your lifestyle probably won’t change too terribly much, aside from the fact that you might be able to retire from your job. But when you add $5,000 each week on top of that, you can really start to do some interesting things!
Here’s what I would do if I won the prize.
1. Get a REALLY GOOD financial advisor. This is the most important step you can take, and it would be something I would do before letting any of my family or friends know that we had won. Tim and I would want to develop some sort of game plan to maximize so that we can do great things for as many people and causes as possible.
2. Tithe. As a Christian, I do believe that it is important to give back, not only to your religious community, but also to causes that address issues of injustice in the world. I would immediately begin tithing 10% of the $5,000 every week (so $500/week). Half of that would go to my home church, and the other half would go to various nonprofits. It would be a lot of fun to be able to send a $250 check to a different nonprofit every week, I think! I would probably even blog about which nonprofit I was supporting each week and why to encourage others to give!
3. Soundly invest the 1 million dollars. I basically wouldn’t touch this money but would have a plan in place to let it grow as much as possible so that we can do more with it in the future.
4. Pay off our debts. We have a mortgage on a house in Memphis. I still have school loans. Those are our only debts, thankfully, but they still hang over us and the total is still quite hefty. I would put our weekly money toward paying off the debts first and not use any of it for a frivolous purpose until the debts were cleared. That’s the honest truth! That means that Tim would still go to work and I would keep right on blogging!
5. Once our debts our paid, take our extended families on a really nice vacation. This would be the big splurge for us! We’d love to plan a vacation for my family and another vacation for Tim’s family. Creating memories together are one of the greatest gifts you can give each other, and we’d have an absolute blast planning something truly fantastic.
6. Regroup. After the tithing, the investing, the debt repayment and the vacations of a lifetime, we would regroup to determine the best way to use the funds coming in moving forward. No doubt a percentage of them would be put into the million dollar investment account, a percentage would go to family members to help with debts and/or college savings accounts, and a percentage would go toward larger gifts and contributions to nonprofits that mean a lot to us (such as our alma mater, Rhodes College). We would also assess our current work situations at that point and determine if we want to retire.
I’ve entered this contest, myself, and let’s be real: I hope I win! But I also want you to get to have as much fun dreaming up your plans as I did dreaming up mine. So I want to share with you how you can easily enter the current Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes. It’s pretty simple, actually. Just enter your information on this form. That’s it!
Now it is your turn to dream! What would you do with 1 million dollars + $5,000 each week for life? I would SO love to hear your answers!
Publishers Clearing House (PCH) has awarded over $240 million in prizes over the year. No purchase is necessary to enter their giveaways, but should you choose to make a purchase, 100% satisfaction is guaranteed on any purchase you make through the mail or through their website, pch.com. PCH has an online game network where someone wins a prize roughly every 10 minutes. The winner for the Win $1 Million plus $5,000 Every Week for Life Mega Prize will be announced June 30th. There will be a winner. Why shouldn’t it be you???