Setting Life Goals

How to Acquire Luck

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"How to Acquire Luck"
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Luck is not something that you can collect like pennies, coupons, or points. You can't acquire luck through the use of special charms, spells, or potions. What you can do, however, is to look for opportunities, use your advantages, and to be persistent in your quest to make good things happen in your life.  Let's look at what luck is and what we can do to make ourselves more "lucky".

Luck is commonly understood in terms of the probability of a positive outcome or an unexpected benefit. If you have good luck, then positive outcomes or unexpected benefits seem to happen more often than normal for you. If you find a quarter on the sidewalk on your daily walk to work, you might think of yourself as lucky. If you meet a successful Broadway director on the street and he asks you to come for an audition, you'll be pleased by your good fortune.

Conversely, if bad things seem to happen to you a lot or someone else seems to get more of these wonderful surprises and good things, then you'll think that you have bad luck. Maybe you were sick the day that your cubicle mate won a door prize - if you had been there, you might have gotten it instead. Maybe a car splashed you with muddy water on your way to work, ruining your new dress: this will cause you to think that you have "bad" luck.

No one has ever found an instant solution to make you lucky - anyone who claims this is lying or was the benefit of random circumstances. However, you can do things that can allow good things happen to you more often, but they are not always easy, nor guaranteed to be successful.

One thing that you can do is to look for opportunities to get experience, to learn new skills, or to tell people about your interests. How do you do this? Lots of ways! Talk to friends, family, and acquaintances about your interests to see if they have any suggestions. Meet new people who might be involved in the activities that interest you. Read your local newspapers, web sites, magazines, anything that might have relevant information. If you see something that you want to be participate in, find a way to observe it and ask if you can help or participate. Opportunities are like planting seeds in the ground: the more seeds you plant, the better chance you have of making flowers grow.

Advantages are qualities that can aid your success. Advantages include skills, knowledge, contacts, and availability. If you find opportunities, your advantages will help you exploit them. Let's say you want to act in a community play. If you have knowledge about acting, the play that will be performed, or if you have previous acting experience, then you have advantages. You can use your knowledge and skills to help you explore the opportunity before you. Being flexible, available, and mobile are other important advantages. These three attributes make it relatively easy for people to work with you. If it's easier for the director to work with you than with someone else because you are available, more flexible, and mobile, that creates a powerful advantage to help you get a role in the play.

Persistence and hard work are the real keys to making good things happen. Successful people are usually talented people, but they usually become successful by continually trying to get those opportunities (i.e. planting lots of seeds) and by becoming better at getting the opportunities. Thomas Edison is famous for the revolutionary inventions that he created, but he didn't get them right the first time. The electric light bulb took much work and hundreds of trials to be successful. Stephen King, the world's most successful horror writer, did not write best-selling novels from the moment he could hold a pencil. His success came after years of hard work and persistence. King accumulated his fair share of rejection slips before he began to sell stories, let alone novels. Most successful creators have gone through the same cycle. Why did they succeed? They succeeded because they were talented, but also because they were determined, persistent, and they didn't stop trying. Their "good luck" happened because they kept trying until they got what they wanted.

Put away the rabbit's foot, stop crossing your fingers, and don't worry about the black cat that's about to cross your path. Instead, look for opportunities, be ready to seize them, and keep trying until you succeed!

More about this author: Mark Dykeman

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