Little Lotteries

Rich Habits

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It’s human nature to focus on the things that go wrong in life. Because of this innate human character flaw, when things go wrong we have a tendency to drift into the abyss of negativity. Thankfully, for most, this negativity abyss is usually temporary.

Until something else goes wrong.

Those who are pursuing success face so many obstacles, problems and so much adversity, it’s easy to find yourself wallowing in negativity for years.

This happened to me between 2009 – 2012. Despite the fact I had a successful CPA firm, a new business venture was dragging me down. I literally spent over two years getting rejected 100% of the time. I was so mired in negativity during this time.

Then, one day, my daughter blurted out, “Dad, you’ve become so negative lately and everyone’s sick and tired of your negativity.”

That stopped me in my tracks. I had no idea I was being so negative.

So, what did I do to end my negative outlook and return to my positive outlook?

I began making a list of what I’ve come to call my Little Lotteries. These are the things that went right in my life.

My Little Lottery List completely shifted my mindset from negative to positive, almost immediately.

And you know what? Within a few months, my new business venture began to see some success. Don’t get me wrong, I still faced many rejections, or “No’s”, but I also began getting many “Yeses”.

So, the lesson I learned was that life relentlessly punishes those with a negative outlook and rewards those with a positive outlook.

What are your Little Lotteries? What things went right in your life? Here’s a short example of my list, so you get the idea:

  • After getting accepted into college, with no idea how I was going to pay for it, I was offered a 20 hour a week job as a janitor, with after-school hours
  • Someone who my wife and I befriended in my condo complex knew someone who worked at Arthur Anderson, the #1 Big 4 Accounting Firm in the world, and I was able to get a job working at Anderson
  • After getting accepted into Graduate School, with no idea how to pay for it, my company informed me that they had just implemented a new employee benefit program and that program would pay 100% of my Graduate School costs.

You get the idea.

What luck visited you in life? What Little Lotteries did you hit?

Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life”, Effort-Less Wealth, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals.”



  1. Sam Pittsburgh on August 24, 2023 at 7:35 AM


    I found alot of events in life improved once I began attending church services every Sunday over the last 3 years.

    It puts behind me the madness of the media and temporal events.

    Spiritual growth, health, those you love, and prosperity are my order of priorities.

    Sam Pittsburgh.