As an author I am always working at growing my social media followers. Not only does my publisher like to see me interacting with fans online, but I must also admit it gives me a good feeling when someone follows me on social media. Just like in real life when someone wants to be your ‘friend’.

Carpe Diem

Whenever someone likes my page or wants to be my friend on Facebook or Instagram, I always take a moment to read their profile. If, upon clicking their name, all I see is a man with a hairy chest and three pictures of him on the beach I immediately know this person is a fake account. Recently on Instagram, someone followed me who said they were Dave Johnson, lottery winner of the 298-million-dollar Powerball Jackpot. I googled his name and it was true, a David Johnson did win the lottery. I also noticed he had 2000 followers on Instagram, and I decided to follow him back. In his profile it said he is giving out $30,000 to his random followers.  I scrolled through his videos of people receiving their money via FedEx. I thought, “well, isn’t that nice” and went about my day.

Next thing I know he sent me a message to congratulate me because my profile was chosen as part of his giveaway program, and I have been awarded a cash prize of $30,000. The message asked me if I was ready to claim my winnings now. Deep down, knowing it was a scam, I played along and gave him the thumbs up.

Too Good to be True?

Immediately the bot replied back, “This is a once in a life changing opportunity. You just have to trust the process. So can you tell me when you receive your winnings amount worth $30,000 what you gonna use it for?” This question got me thinking…if I had won $30,000, what would I do with it? So I took to my phone keyboard and started to reply back… What if this wasn’t a scam? What if this was the actual lottery winner interacting? This is what I wrote:

“Well…in thinking about this question my mind goes to several things… I could pay off my house, put it away for retirement in a mutual fund, or take my adult children and their families on a vacation. But all of those would be short term satisfactions. Like life, money needs to be moving, doing good things so it can grow and help others. With that in mind, I would:

1. Donate $10,000 to various scholarship funds for adult learners (since I was a recipient of these types of scholarships)

2. Because I just wrote a book which is now being published (Thank you Morgan James Publishing) and set to be released in November I would start my online community and writing coach career to help others tell their stories.

3. I would also hire a coach to help me be a better entrepreneur and finally…

4. I would put some aside to go on an RV adventure and write about my observations and the interesting people I would meet! (We currently have a camper).

Thanks for asking!”

Then I hit send.

Scam Averted

One second later the bot immediately replied back with mega typos, “That’s nice to hear just wanna be sure you make use of the money properly. Your winnings will be sent in cash, You are to provide these informations to forwarded to a FedEx agent because your winnings will be sent to you through shipping.” Then it asked for my full name, phone number, and address…then I blocked the account. Scam averted.

Now, I know some of you may be thinking, “Roxanne, are you crazy? Why would you have even considered answering this person back?” I thought the same thing. But what his question helped me to do was think about what I really want. What if I did inherit that money? What would I dream about doing with it? The thought of having that money available to spend on my dreams got me thinking. There was a time when I thought my dreams weren’t possible because I didn’t have the money. But I’m here to tell you it is possible to live your dreams. Make a plan, set some goals, take action. It will happen. But first you must know what it is you want.

Let Yourself Dream

If you were offered $30,000 cash, what would you do with it? What dream would you act on? Visit my page and send me a comment. I would love to hear from you.