In times of economic crisis the lottery increases its prominence because it offers people something essential: illusion, hope, faith in change, the possibility of living in a better future and forgetting the overwhelming present.
But … let’s go back a little in history, how did the lottery come about? It is said that around 190 B.C. the Chinese established a raffle model where five numbers of the 90 available should be chosen. Later, in the XVIII century in Italy, what was known as Primitive Lottery was played for the first time.
Years later, in the early 1800s, the lottery arrives in Spain thanks to Carlos III, being used as a means to raise funds. The modern lottery is developed, which extends throughout the country as it manages to raise a considerable amount of money.
Today the lottery is known and played at a massive level throughout the world, resulting in a variety of forms of play that it offers, it is even possible to play online.
Let’s take a deeper look at this seemingly good option that Goddess Fortune offers us. What are the approximate earnings that the lottery raises that allows it provide those exorbitant prizes?
Contrary to what can be thought, in the first half of 2009 in Argentina a total of 13 billion pesos was collected while in Spain some jackpot awards exceeded 300 million euros and this is only 22.5% of the total Lottery sales in the country. In Italy the “superenalotto” offered its greatest prize in history, 117 million euros; of course, the profits far exceed this number.
What is the common profile of the people who play the lottery?
Surprisingly, those who have a minimum wage, around $ 10,000 a year, invest more than 3% of their income trying to win the lottery. Common players are also those who have a lower cultural level, people who are probably not fully aware of their real chances of winning the prize.
And finally, how does the life of the people who win the lottery change?
Again and again, regardless of the size of their earnings; finally, 87% of the people who win the lottery end up returning to their original economic status, if they do not go bankrupt.
35% recognize that they were better before winning the prize while 1/4 of the winners fall themselves to excesses like alcohol and assumes a disorganized lifestyle.
This happens because the person who wins the lottery remains essentially the same person but now has a capital that does not know how to manage and becomes another source of stress. Remember that managing a large sum of money demands the implementation of new skills; if we are not flexible people and open to change, we can hardly restructure and successfully assume this new challenge.
At the same time, our interpersonal relationships will vary. The others will see us as “the new rich” and from this image they will relate; they will probably become more plaintiffs and accusers. If we are not experts in managing interpersonal relationships, they will become an added stress generator.
People play because they want to escape their sad and overwhelming reality, they look for an illusion, they want to believe in the possibility that their life can change as if by magic. They find it more comforting to think of a fortune earned without spending energy than to imagine how much they should strive to achieve only part of their dreams.
In turn, it is easier to blame the economic deficits for our frustrations than recognize that we were not able to start a business with a certain level of success. Thus, we think that a good amount of money will solve our problems when our difficulties are not due to the fact of having more or less money but about how to handle it and how we face life.
I hope then that the next time someone feels the desire to play, remember these reflections.