QUESTION: Is the glass half empty or half full?
Half Empty → You are unlucky
Half Full → You are lucky
Do you see what I’m getting at? Luck is mostly about perception when it comes to favorable outcomes. Let’s talk about the power of positive thinking. If you consider yourself to be unlucky, just pretending you are lucky by acting and thinking like a lucky person, can have a dramatic effect. For example, if you get in a car crash, and walk away without a scratch, you can either focus on your totaled car or the fact that you aren’t hurt. A lucky person will tend to think along the lines of “Wow, that could have been a lot worse.” True, turning a negative into a positive is not always easy, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to try. The more you practice this shift in thinking, the easier it will become with time.
Next, it would behoove you unlucky people to visit a little land we like to call “opportunity.” Make yourself open to opportunity by welcoming change into your life. This can be as simple as taking an alternate route to work, or trying to strike up a conversation with different types of people you don’t normally encounter. When opportunity knocks, answer the door! In order to not miss it, you must first recognize it. If you’re too buried in your umbrella to notice it’s raining $5 bills, there’s a problem.
If you’re still thinking luck is a miracle force from the supernatural realm and you are rubbing your lucky rabbit’s foot as we speak, hear me out. People who consider themselves to be unlucky tend to have higher levels of anxiety and “tunnel vision.” These people spend time focusing so hard on something specific they miss everything else around them. Take a deep breath and a big step back from the picture. If you are too busy avoiding the thorns on a rose stem, you will never appreciate the rose. Believe it or not, all people have a natural intuitive ability to some degree. But we can be our own worst enemy when it comes to utilizing it. We get anxious, think ‘worst case scenario,’ and are blinded by that negative state of mind.
For example, you are up to bat. Bases loaded, bottom of the eighth, tie game, 3 balls, 2 strikes and the pitcher is winding up. What are you thinking? Most likely “Don’t strike out…don’t strike out...” And what happens? You strike out. Why is this? Probably because you were concentrating on not striking out when you should have been concentrating on how hard you were going to blast the ball. When concentration is applied in all the wrong places, sometimes the opposite of what we want to happen occurs. We can be blinded by our own uncertainties, making it easy to ignore our natural insight.
Try this: Next time you have an unfortunate event, think of what could have gone worse and see how it changes your perception of the event. Now, this is going to take a bit of pride-swallowing and determination on your part. You may feel silly at first, but after a couple of tries you should start to feel better about the events in your life, and even have higher expectations for the future. Set your own goals and see yourself through to their completion. Don’t wait for luck to come to you. Go get it, tiger!
In order to expose yourself to new opportunities, get outside your comfort zone. Enroll yourself in a class or activity that is the opposite of what you would normally do. Musicians could take a yoga class and jocks could learn how to play the guitar. Browse the Recreation Connection online to find something new and different to do: (www.greeleygov.com/recreation).
You never know who you will meet and what you will learn about yourself when you are thinking outside the box. I leave you with a traditional Irish Blessing:
A Wish for a Friend
Wishing you a rainbow
for sunlight after showers—
Miles and miles of Irish smiles
for golden happy hours—
Shamrocks at your doorway
for luck and laughter too,
And a host of friends that never ends
each day your whole life through!