Zyaire Porter
January 13, 2016 12:21 PM EST
Lisa Nichols is the author of Abundance Now.

Excitement continues to rise surrounding the ever-growing U.S. Powerball lottery payoff. If only people exhibited the same level of enthusiasm toward taking charge and winning their own personal life lottery!

The jackpot could surpass $1.5 billion, a world-record, and should there be a winner, he or she can opt to take it in one lump sum or accept an annual payout over 29 years.

The odds of winning this lottery are so high (about 292 million to one), we have a better chance of getting hit by lightning. But the odds of achieving financial and personal success by becoming self-empowered are one to one. Making an investment in your life now can pay real dividends throughout your life—and it wouldn’t be in annual installments, but in payments you would see each and every day, in your finances and in your personal relationships. You also wouldn’t risk becoming money-rich and relationship-poor (the fate suffered by many lottery winners).

I should know. In 1994 I felt as though everything was stacked against me. But in considering my child’s future, I had a powerful motivator to clear the chaos from my life and write my own future. Trust me on this: If I can do it, so can you.

My latest book Abundance Now is a compilation of the mindset, tools, techniques and actions steps that I took on and implemented over the past 21 years to transform my life from being a struggling single mom on public assistance to a CEO of a public company, Motivating the Masses.

I found all the courage and determination I needed to rewrite my story inside of me—and my joy in life is to help everyone find theirs. Each of us has a mighty reservoir of talent and potential waiting to be tapped—and this electrifying journey begins by building upon our own positive characteristics.

Here’s how to make yourself a winner at the lottery of life.

Start with your mindset. You have to have unwavering faith that you can push past any current limiting beliefs. You have to be confident in yourself that you can take on new opportunities and have the power to get what you want out of others. Knowing is the first step to initiating. Then you can take responsibility for your thoughts and actions and—perhaps most important of all—your reactions to what daily life throws your way.

This may sound easy, but it’s not. People tend to look outside themselves for what’s going wrong in their lives. The journey to personal success begins in earnest once you examine your past and how you’ve reacted to events that have shaped your life.

You—and you alone—have the power to bring about the future you envision. In fact, envisioning is the next step after creating a mindset for success. Envision your near- and far-term life objectives. Create a mental image of what you want—and empower yourself to pursue your goals.

Read more: How to Watch the $1.5 Billion Powerball Drawing Live

Becoming self-empowered means altering old constraints, freeing yourself from fears and past decisions, and evicting any disempowering thoughts that do not support your life goals. Plan for what you want to create, rather than focus on what you want to avoid. When you speak in the language of possibility, you’ll be breathing life into every situation.

Accidental success—luck—is a myth. Achieving abundance means being methodical and disciplined. It is also about trusting your own intuition—but it helps to enhance your intuition through research and dialogue. A successful person knows how to fail forwardto look for the lesson in any failure and move forward with greater clarity and answers on how to maximize new opportunities and strategies.

Abundance results from making decisions in accordance with your highest principles and values—and remaining laser-focused on methods that focus on results. Abundance achievers are willing to fail, but do not expect to fail. In order to build your life, you need to give yourself permission to make wrong decisions and experience a bad result.

Without this permission, you might run to the edge—but just look, and not leap. Recognize that without risk, you stop yourself before you’ve had the chance to succeed.

While you won’t be able to outrun fear, you can learn how to navigate your way through “fear storms,” whether it’s launching a business, making bold decisions for financial growth or overhauling a personal relationship. Helping you navigate through “fear storms” is information, knowledge and advice—abundance achievers constantly seek out advice, and make use of research.

Those who are winning at the lottery of life make others want to circulate in their universe. Leaders build relationships that allow for enthusiasm, possibility and the “wow” factor.

Perhaps most important of all, abundance comes to those who are always clear about the non-negotiables, a core list of qualities that will not be altered. Integrity is non-negotiable, even if it is convenient.

I, like the next girl, would love to be the winner of some big pay day. But the luck of the draw cannot impact your relationships, finances and health. The best bet you can make is on yourself.

Contact us at letters@time.com.

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