The word luck is one of the most misused and misunderstood terms in the English language. Here is the Oxford English Dictionary definition of luck: Success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions.
The key word in the definition above is chance, the true meaning of luck is just chance but that is not how we often use it. People that didn’t know me or know I came from a teenage homeless hostel and only saw my success would often tell me I was lucky. I even believed it for a while. What they actually meant was: “To forgive my own apathy, laziness and fear of risk I want to believe that you are successful by chance alone and I am less successful through no fault of my own.”
This whole misconception was what prompted me to write my book How To Be Lucky. I wanted to redefine the meaning of luck to show people when they thought someone was lucky that person was actually just applying some effective strategies, taking some risks and working on success. After reading this, some of my other posts and maybe my book then you will be that person implementing those strategies to start making your own luck and success.
So here are my top 10 myths on my definition of luck:
1. Someone is successful therefore they were lucky. Most successful people took many risks and experienced a multitude of failures before they got to where they are, chance had little or nothing to do with it.
2. Lucky to be born in an apparently affluent country. There are people in the United States, UK and every wealthy nation born into abject poverty, suffer abuse and contract all the diseases and life threatening conditions that exist everywhere.
3. Unlucky to be born into a poor family or area. Your family, neighborhood and contacts present you with you own unique set of opportunities. The opportunities open to you are specific to you, they are no better or worse than the ones open to me, just different. It’s how you use your opportunities that matters. To learn more about how to use your specific opportunities have a look at my book How To Be Lucky and my Business and Entrepreneurship Coaching.
4. Someone is lucky because they had a good education. The most successful entrepreneurs and richest people in the world only have a very basic education and evidence would suggest a university education would go against you if you want to make a lot of money. The only education you need is the one you can give to yourself, learn what is necessary to take advantage your unique opportunities.
5. Having a disability is unlucky. Every time I see the special Olympics or athletes competing in marathons in wheelchairs I feel ashamed that I am not achieving more with what I have. Nearly everyone has some kind of disability that they can use as an excuse; I have dyslexia, my wife suffered from a life threatening stomach condition, my friend has severe asthma, my father has MS. Guess what? Everyone has something to deal with, you are not excused from life just because you have issues to deal with. Stop making excuses for yourself and go and make it happen.
6. You have to have money to make money. So many entrepreneurs and even successful small business owners started with very little or nothing. Attitude and enthusiasm are key, if you have these things you can find what you need to get on.
7. Too old or too young. Depending on where you are in your life you can always use one of these excuses. People of all ages are achieving amazing things, there’s absolutely nothing stopping you from doing the same.
8. You were in the right place at the right time. This is usually true but everyone is in the right place at the right time on a regular basis but hardly anyone recognizes it or wants to take the risk so don’t knock a person for seeing an opportunity and having the balls to take it. Better still the next time you are in the right place at the right time take the chance yourself.
9. Nothing good happens to me, I’m not a lucky person. I usually hear this from people who have a very limited circle of friends, activities and contacts. Get out there and do something new, meet some new people and go to new places. This will prompt a whole new world to open up and suddenly good things might just start to come your way.
10. I tried something different once but I didn’t have any luck and it failed. ALL successful people and entrepreneurs have to deal with knock backs and failure from the start and ongoing, forever, it comes with the territory. If we strip back luck to its original definition of chance then any game of chance is a numbers game; the more chances you take the more chance you have of winning.
I hope my Top 10 Myths About Being Lucky will help you in whatever you do in life.
If you’d like some 1 to 1 tailored advice to help you with your business or ideas for you to create your own luck, I am now offering business coaching and mentoring for as little as £35 or $55, get in touch using the form below and we can talk about how I can help you.