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Russell C. Smith and Michael Foster

We Make Our Own Luck

What if luck can be created by effort, and not by accident?

What if luck can be created by effort, and not by accident? Are you content to let others make your luck for you, or are you discovering that you can make your own luck? There are those people you meet who are engaged in life to such a degree, it can feel inspiring or overwhelming. Call it charisma, or personality, or an abundance of energy. Luck shines out of their eyes. But often, the truth is, it took years of hard work to build up that reservoir of luck inside themselves.

Lucky people stand out from the crowd. What is it that sets these people apart from folks on the opposite end of the spectrum, the people who watch life go by, as if they are watching their own lives unfold on a movie screen? Taking action, for one thing. Being an active participant in your own life is one way to find some of the luck lucky people have. You might understand this in an aha moment, or it might be a gradual discovery, but sooner or later you’ll see you’re the one constant factor in making the changes you want to happen in your own life.

Making your own luck is connected to looking at yourself from a different perspective, stepping outside your comfort zone to try new things, reinventing how you do certain things, and finding the mentors you need to get a more focused look at what your strengths are. Join groups, meet like-minded people, go to events and interact, be more connected to dormant sides of yourself you are intrigued by. Start new projects, and complete projects left undone for months or years. Seek out people whose minds you can change, or who will change your mind in a way that matters.

Timing is sometimes everything, but if you’re not paying attention to your relationship to time, you may miss out on what’s supposed to happen. Big things might not happen every day, but there’s always one day that matters. If you knock on a door that wouldn’t budge long enough, one day it opens easily, as if the slightest gust of wind was all it took.

Without going for it, whatever your it is, you’ll never know if you could’ve reached it. No, it doesn’t come easy. Sometimes all the luck and serendipity in the world seems to be one connection away. But without reaching out, the person with the answer to your question never speaks up, because you weren’t in front of them.

If you don’t ask for something, no one knows to offer it to you. Accepting that we all have the ability to speak up is what sets people and societies apart from each other. It is also what can lead to having a lucky day and making an impact on the world. Asking. Making a claim on your own place in the world. Daily progress comes from realizing everything is a process, and the more effort you put into changing your relationships, your career, your community, the more things will change.

Change is hard. But it would be an incredibly uninteresting world without it. To get somewhere else, change isn’t just a daily occurrence, it has to be a primary goal. The life choices we make should lead us toward making things happen, not just letting them happen around us.

Preparation leads to better luck. In the sports arena, this is obvious. In other areas of life, the interconnection between spending hours each day working on your own lifelong projects and making your luck may not be as apparent. Sometimes, making luck happen feels like the most difficult thing in the world, other times you’ve already worked on the foundation, laid the groundwork, written the back story – and with one door opening, a whole new stage of your life begins.

– Collage Art "Green Machine" by Russell C. Smith.