17 things more likely to happen to you than winning the lottery

Lottery Players Line Up For Tickets As Mega Millions Jackpot Grows To $454 Million

When it comes to winning the Mega Millions jackpot, you're more likely to be struck by lightning. In fact, with the odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot sitting at 1 in 259 million, you're far more likely to become a movie star — or get caught in an avalanche.

While buying lottery tickets comes with a thrill, it's a waste of good money. So the next time you dream about hitting it big, just consider these 17 things that are far more likely to happen.

17 Things More Likely to Happen to You Than Winning the Lottery (GOBankingRates.com)
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17 Things More Likely to Happen to You Than Winning the Lottery (GOBankingRates.com)

1. Being Killed by a Meteorite

You're actually more likely to be killed by a meteorite than be hit by one, according to Discover Magazine. That's because you're a small target on Earth while the planet itself isn't too unlikely to be hit by an asteroid. In fact, the odds of an asteroid causing enough havoc on Earth to take you out are about 1 in 700,000, according to astronomer Alan Harris.

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2. Becoming the Next Warren Buffett

Looking to be the next Warren Buffett? Chances are you'll climb your way to the top before you ever win the lottery.

The 2015 World Health Report from Capgemini showed 15.37 million individuals worldwide are worth $1 million or more. Even with a relatively small pool of millionaires and billionaires, Americans (millennials in particular) are hopeful they'll be rich someday.

The television network Fusion polled millennials on whether they expected to become millionaires in their lifetimes. Roughly 28 percent said they planned on it, even though 40 percent of respondents claimed to still receive financial support from their parents.

Get Rich: 7 Things Successful People Don't Waste Their Money On

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3. Dying in a Plane Crash

If you're scared of flying, you might want to read this one. As terrifying it is to think about a hunk of metal sitting at a cruising altitude of 36,000 feet, chances are you won't be falling out of the sky any time soon.

The Economist estimated your odds of dying by plane crash are about 1 in 5.37 million. Slim odds to say the least. Chances you'll be stuck between a crying baby and a guy who won't give you elbow room? Much higher.

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4. Being Killed by Hornets, Wasps or Bees

Painful as a bee or wasp sting, chances are it won't kill you. The National Safety Council estimated the odds of dying by hornet, wasp or bee sting are 1 in 64,706.

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5. Being Canonized

In his book "Life: The Odds," author Gregory Baer pegs your chances of becoming a saint at 1 in 20 million, given that about 100 billion people have lived on this planet and about 5,000 have been canonized.

If you're looking to boost your chances, try becoming the pope.

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6. Getting Audited

Tax season might make you sweat, but your chances of ever being audited aren't too bad — about 1 in 119, reported Kiplinger. And unless you're making millions of dollars or reporting nothing at all on your taxes, chances are your lone W2 won't be getting a lot of attention from the taxman.

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7. Becoming President of the U.S.

If being blamed for all of America's problems are on your shortlist of things to do, you're in luck. The chances of becoming president are about 1 in 10 million, according to Baer. Those odds increase drastically when you're between the ages of 40 and 72, have a law degree, are a military veteran or a man of faith above six feet tall.

If you're America's favorite Republican nominee Donald Trump, your chances are even higher.

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8. Being Wrongfully Convicted of a Crime

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (RIP) cited the odds of a wrongful conviction at about 0.027 percent, or 1 in 3,703, in a 2006 court opinion. This was based on rough math an Oregon district attorney cobbled together for a New York Times op-ed, but many experts place your odds of being wrongfully convicted much higher.

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9. Becoming a Movie Star

Fame and fortune don't go hand-in-hand. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for actors was $18.80 in 2015, with over 69,000 jobs available in 2014.

Although few acting jobs will put you on the A-list, landing a role for a big-screen film is far easier than winning the lottery. Long story short: You're better off buying a ticket to Los Angeles than putting in your share of the $73.8 billion lotteries made in 2015.

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10. Having Your Identity Stolen

Over the years, businesses like Target and Sony have been the targets of large scale data breaches, exposing millions of customers to identity theft. If you've received letters in the past that your information was compromised due to a data breach, take caution. A 2013 report by Javelin Strategy & Research found that 1 in 4 data breach letter recipients became victims of identity theft.

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11. Writing a New York Times Bestseller

If you're already a published author, writing the next New York Times bestseller is stupidly easy. Your chances of making the cut are about 1 in 220. According to Baer, you actually have worse odds of catching a foul ball at a baseball game (1 in 563).

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12. Becoming an Astronaut

Money can't buy a trip to the moon, although it could buy a ticket on Virgin Galactic. If you fantasize about being an astronaut on the ISS or just about any other spacecraft with a view of Earth, your chances of joining NASA's 2017 astronaut class of eight to 14 are around 1 in 2,300, or 1 in 1,300 if you're feeling optimistic.

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13. Being the Victim of a Chainsaw Accident

Mother always told you not to run with scissors. Well, she should have warned you about chainsaws, too. Your odds of getting injured in a chainsaw accident are 1 in 4,464, according to estimates from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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14. Going to the E.R. With a Pogo Stick-Related Injury

To be fair, pogo sticks are terribly difficult to use. Just be aware that if you have the misfortune of spending an afternoon on one, your chances of bouncing your way into the ER are about 1 in 115,300, according to one report.

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15. Winning an Olympic Gold Medal

You have about a 1 in 662,000 chance of taking home Olympic gold in your life — but, of course, you have to get yourself into the games first. The YouTube channel AsapSCIENCE ran the numbers on how to increase your chances of becoming a winter Olympian and found that hailing from Liechtenstein gives you the best odds at the Winter Olympics (1 in 9,000).

Curling is your best bet for a sport, given its high number of participants and the fact that many curling Olympians are in their 40s — and aren't exactly in what many would consider "Olympian" shape.

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16. Dying From Natural Heat

A little fun in the sun never hurt — or so you thought. The National Safety Council reported 1 in 10,784 people die of exposure to excessive heat. So drink your water, wear a pretty sun hat or just stay indoors forever and you'll be fine.

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17. Having Conjoined Twins

Your odds of birthing conjoined twins are about 1 in 200,000, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Your odds of giving birth to normal twins? About 3 in 100.

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Stop Wasting Money: 13 Things You Need to Stop Doing Now

Lucy Mueller contributed to this article.

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A ticket is seen ahead of the Mega Millions lottery draw which reached a jackpot of $415 Million in Manhattan, New York, U.S., July 1, 2016. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
A ticket is seen ahead of the Mega Millions lottery draw which reached a jackpot of $415 Million in Manhattan, New York, U.S., July 1, 2016. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

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