Today on our way home from CT we decided to stop into the Mohegan Sun Casino. Now this might sound weird, but whenever I go to a casino I take it as an opportunity to consciously watch my thoughts as they relate to money and to learn life lessons. Oh money you deceiver, you maker and breaker of dreams. Anyway, before we went in I said to Kelly, “I’m only donating $40 to this adventure.” But now, $160 later, I have a different story to tell.
First off let me say that I am never one to do anything half way. Whatever I do, I want to do it all the way or I don’t want to do it at all. But, since we are on a budget, I never really get too deep into gambling. I see it as a game. You either win or you lose. And when it comes to the casino, I know that they aren’t in the business of losing. I don’t go in there thinking that I am going to win the jackpot, but I still think it would be cool if I did. So why did I keep playing after we spent the $40? Well it’s like this.
When I started playing with my initial $40 I was betting between thirty and sixty cents a bet and got down to about $3 when I decided to make ninety cents bets. A couple of spins later I hit the bonus round and was at ninety-eight dollars. That’s $98 just in case you thought I made a typing mistake. So basically in a matter of seconds I went from about $1 to almost 100 times as much. And that got me thinking. What the heck did it all mean? It came back even faster than it went and it was nothing but dumb luck. I didn’t really feel excited or anything. It was just numbers on the screen.
So when I found myself wondering what it was like to hit the bonus round at max bet I started slapping away $3 a pop. I soon noticed the universal truth that “when you bet big you win big”—at least relatively. Bets that were worth $1.50 when I was betting pennies were now paying upwards of $10 and I just watched waiting for my bonus round. It never came and I was quickly at $0.00.
Now normally I would have stopped there, but today I was on a mission so I took out $100 to keep playing. That’s more than I have ever taken out to play at one time, but I was still on this train of thought and wanted to stay on for the ride. After about $20 worth of betting I found out what it felt like. It was empty. I hit a 5x multiplier and went up $15. Woopty doo. I was back to $103. On to a new thought. What if I hit the 500x or 1000x multiplier? Well, I won’t know today. Maybe some other time. Now, as I write while Kelly drives, I’m just hoping we have enough to pay the tolls on the Mass Pike.
But despite leaving my money on the reservation, I’m feeling pretty good. I didn’t walk away a loser because I gained some lessons. Here they are:
Your thoughts make your experience. If I was caught up on “winning” I would have taken my $98 and ran. But because I wasn’t really thinking about it that way I just kept playing. On the other side I could have felt like a loser for dropping another $120, but again I was just curious about the experience and the only way I would have ever known was to play so…
Don’t be attached. I know it sucks sometimes, but everything in this life is easy come, easy go. Your best bet (pun intended) is to be mindful and enjoy what you have while it’s around and let it go when it’s time without regrets.
Luck and what occurs in the Universe is not personal. Stuff happens in life. Sometimes we judge it as good and sometimes we judge it as bad, but as cliché as it sounds, it always just is what it is. We never really know where the next moment is taking us. Besides, you can learn from anything and when you do, you gain.