Do You Feel Lucky?


Lucky

Posted 4 March 2014, by TheBigZowie

It’s a simple question really. And yet, if we ponder it and answer honestly, it reveals so much about our childhood experience, our hopes and dreams as adolescents and finally, our expectations for our future. And how much luck, or the lack of it, would one need to have experienced in order to answer “yes”, or “no” to that question? Do you even believe in “lucky”, or “unlucky” people? Is luck quantifiable? Does luck even exist – or is it a myth?

If you win a prize, say $5 from a “scratcher” you purchased at a convenience store for a dollar, do you then feel lucky? What if you won $50, $100 or $5000? How about if you won a million dollar lottery – now would you feel lucky? How much good fortune do you need to experience in order for you to feel “lucky”? Does it need to be spread out for you in many life spanning parcels of smaller good fortunes, or can you be considered lucky if it all comes to you in one big jolt?

How you think of luck defines YOU, whether you know it or not. For instance, generally speaking, do you believe you have to make your own good luck through hard work and dedication, or can it just favor some people, not others – and you are – or aren’t – that one?

It might interest you to know that a study on this elusive subject of luck was conducted by a prominent behavioral and experimental psychologist from a modern leading business-facing university. Richard Wiseman, is Professor of Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire in the United Kingdom. Interestingly enough, Professor Wiseman, also a member of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, set out to prove luck wasn’t a superstitious anomaly, so much as a set of principles and patterns of conduct one could learn and thereby use to improve good fortune. After a ten year research project, he found out some interesting elements to finding good fortune and published his results in a book entitled: The Luck Factor.

He discovered that among the many ways “lucky people” seems to differ from their more hapless counterparts, is that they have a knack and an expectation for spotting opportunity missed by others.

“Unlucky people are generally more tense than lucky people and this anxiety disrupts their ability to notice the unexpected. As a result, they miss opportunities because they are too focused on looking for something else. Lucky people, on the other hand, are more relaxed and open, which means they see what is there.” And that, according to Wiseman, is how some people spot and pluck a four-leaf clover, while the rest of us overlook, or even tread on it in our preoccupation with many other concerns.

This bottom line piece of advice derived from his study seems almost too simple, but bears repeating: “…much of the good and bad fortune we encounter is a result of our thoughts and behavior.” But, if you think about this for a moment, it falls in line with much of what philosophers and motivational teachers have been telling us for many years now. Our predetermined outlook and perspective creates a pattern of behavior and expectation, which then unfolds into a self-fulfilling prophesy that defines our future.

So, do you feel lucky? Well, do ‘ya?

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