“This is the perfect day, D., overcast, the water is the right temperature. I wouldn’t bet against me.” – Eric Seifert, lucky guy
Eric said this to me while in my boat not so long ago, and five minutes later he caught the gorgeous Laker you see in the photo. It was close to six pounds for those of you who are interested. We caught it right in front of my cabin, which lucky for me is where there is a good lake trout run.
I can still hear him saying it, and of course my favorite part was “I wouldn’t bet against me.” The fish was also lucky that day, and Eric let him know. “If we were not leaving today,” he told it, “we’d eat you.”
Now, lucky for you, the other day Eric shared a link with me to another blog that he reads which inspired this blog. Luck, it would seem, compounds.
The blog talked about a book called The Luck Factor: Change Your Luck, Change Your Life by Richard Wiseman.
Wiseman wanted to study luck, so he put out ads looking for people who considered themselves either extremely lucky or unlucky. After years of interviews and experiments with over 400 volunteers, Wiseman concluded that we make our own luck, and he identified the underlying principles of, well, getting lucky.
Remember, he only asked for people who identified themselves as being extremely lucky or unlucky.
Here are the four principles:
- Lucky people are skilled at creating and noticing chance opportunities.
- They make lucky decisions by listening to their intuition.
- They create self-fulfilling prophesies via positive expectations.
- They adopt a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good.
A confession. I am the luckiest person on earth. I say that having never won anything, to my knowledge, ever.
Having said that …
- I met my wife through luck, a total fluke.
- I have a career because I was lucky, which is how I ended up getting to share my blog with you, which I hope you feel has been a lucky break for you. The career I have is a good one. In fact, it’s a vocation.
- I found my cottage, which is my family legacy, through luck.
- I met my best friend through luck; he came to buy my car that I had listed in the newspaper.
- I once missed decapitating myself by less than a second, which was pretty lucky but that’s a story for the campfire out on the point under the stars, so if you want to hear it you have to come visit in the summer, which you are welcome to do.
I could go on and on to the point of being offensive.
Or you can just trust me. I am so consistently (ridiculously) lucky that my friends comment on it.
Well, guess what? There is some science to explain why some people are luckier than others and I’m sorry to tell you that just like all science there is no such thing as “both sides of it.” Ahem, this is what makes it science. Things that we believe are true that are not factual are called opinions.
These are the facts; accept them, embrace them and join the luckier.
As you read through this, pause and consider some of your luckier breaks, and how much the following principles have factored into your own personal good fortune.
Lucky people expose themselves to chance opportunities.
They are not afraid to meet new people. Because they meet new people, they expose themselves to new opportunities. Shake it up, people.
Lucky people tend to be a little more extroverted; they enjoy speaking to new people. When they go to parties, for instance, they go talk to new people and not the same old people. By talking to new people, they learn new things and gain new insights.
Lucky people see opportunities that others miss.
There is an experiment where people are asked to count the photos in a newspaper. The unlucky people took about 2 minutes whereas the lucky people knew the answer in about two seconds.
The lucky people saw a message on the second page of the newspaper that took up half the page and was written in text that was about 2 inches high. It said, “Stop counting. There are 43 pictures in the newspaper.”
Half way through the newspaper, there was a second message, it also took up half the page with just as LARGE TEXT. It said: “Tell the experimenter you have seen this and win $250.”
The unlucky people missed the opportunity because they were looking for photographs.
Lucky people see the brighter side. Always.
In the book, Wiseman does an experiment where he exposes people to a terrible scenario that they have to imagine. Specifically, being shot while at the bank.
The unlucky people thought it was, obviously, horrible. And they felt that it would be “just their luck” that they’d be in the bank for that to happen.
The lucky people immediately pointed out that it could be worse. “You could have gotten shot in the head.”
When I read that I laughed out loud because that is something I WOULD SAY.
You were not born under a good star or a bad sign. You just need to a little Serious Shift to mix things up, and allow luck to find you.
We found each other, right?