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Lucky by Design - Avi Liran

Lucky by Design

5 Clever Attitudes to Tilt Odds in Your Favor

Do you consider yourself lucky? Do you want to increase your luck?

It is believed that Napoleon Bonaparte countered criticisms about his reliance on luck in battles by stating, “I prefer lucky generals to skilled ones.”Napoleon ignored his Foreign Minister Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord’s advice against the invasion of Russia in 1812 where he lost the war to “general winter”. The lessons of history reveal that excessive reliance on luck and neglecting constructive criticism can exhaust one’s lucky streak.

Despite amassing billions through his telecommunications empire bearing his name, the former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s decision to evade taxes on the $2 billion sale of his conglomerate to Temasek Holdings accelerated his downfall because of corruption. While fortune favors the bold, it tends to evaporate when the arrogant is blinded by greed.

Before we embark on a quest for greater luck, let’s cast aside the shadows and identify the lurking enemies that threaten to swallow our good fortune whole. These are the biggest black holes of luck: Greed, hubris, complacency, impulsivity, neglect of ethics, not listening to feedback, inflexibility, and short-sightedness and paralysis because of the fear of taking risks.

Personally, I have many good reasons to feel lucky. I see myself as being blessed and therefore I am grateful and have a responsibility to share what I can even if I can’t change my hairstyle. 😀

Brian Tracy once said “𝐼’𝑣𝑒 𝑓𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑙𝑢𝑐𝑘 𝑖𝑠 𝑞𝑢𝑖𝑡𝑒 𝑝𝑟𝑒𝑑𝑖𝑐𝑡𝑎𝑏𝑙𝑒. 𝐼𝑓 𝑦𝑜𝑢 𝑤𝑎𝑛𝑡 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑙𝑢𝑐𝑘, 𝑡𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑐ℎ𝑎𝑛𝑐𝑒𝑠. 𝐵𝑒 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑖𝑣𝑒. 𝑆ℎ𝑜𝑤 𝑢𝑝 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑜𝑓𝑡𝑒𝑛.” Eliyahu Goldrattsaid “𝐺𝑜𝑜𝑑 𝑙𝑢𝑐𝑘 𝑖𝑠 𝑤ℎ𝑒𝑛 𝑜𝑝𝑝𝑜𝑟𝑡𝑢𝑛𝑖𝑡𝑦 𝑚𝑒𝑒𝑡𝑠 𝑝𝑟𝑒𝑝𝑎𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛, 𝑤ℎ𝑖𝑙𝑒 𝑏𝑎𝑑 𝑙𝑢𝑐𝑘 𝑖𝑠 𝑤ℎ𝑒𝑛 𝑙𝑎𝑐𝑘 𝑜𝑓 𝑝𝑟𝑒𝑝𝑎𝑟𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝑚𝑒𝑒𝑡𝑠 𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑙𝑖𝑡𝑦.”

Luck is commonly associated with chance, but it turns out, there are science-backed tricks to improve your luck. A decade-long research by psychology professor and author of “The Luck Factor” Richard Wiseman, suggests that one’s actions, mindset, and behaviors can influence and increase their likelihood of experiencing good fortune or luck. Wiseman interviewed 400 people who self-identified themselves as “lucky” or “unlucky” and found that those who continually had good luck, professionally and personally had some common traits. They responded to situations in similar ways.

😉 𝗕𝗲 𝗼𝗽𝗲𝗻 𝘁𝗼 𝗻𝗲𝘄 𝗲𝘅𝗽𝗲𝗿𝗶𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲𝘀:  In 1928, amidst the clutter of his lab, Scottish physician Alexander Fleming stumbled upon a serendipitous discovery. A forgotten sandwich, nestled near a staphylococci culture, revealed a curious sight: a moldy halo engulfing a bacteria-free zone. Intrigued, Fleming embraced his good luck and embarked on a journey of experimentation, eventually unlocking the power of penicillin, the antibiotic that would one day save countless millions.

To increase your luck, be open and notice the opportunities that come your way. In an experiment conducted by Dr. Wiesman, he observed that lucky individuals seem to consistently stumble upon opportunities that their unlucky counterparts often overlook. He handed out newspapers to both lucky and unlucky participants, asking them to count the number of photographs inside. On average, unlucky participants spent about two minutes on this task, while lucky ones completed it in mere seconds. The reason? On the second page, a large notice stating “Stop counting – There are 43 photographs in this newspaper” was printed in over two-inch-high font, taking up half the page. While it was blatantly obvious, the unlucky group generally missed it, whereas the lucky group tended to notice it. For an added twist, halfway through the newspaper, another large message offered “$250 for telling the experimenter about seeing this notice,” yet again, the unlucky ones, absorbed in counting photographs, missed this chance too.

AP/BBC Alexander Fleming’s mould samples sold at auction at Bonhams in London for £24,375.

😉 𝗟𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗻 𝘁𝗼 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗶𝗻𝘁𝘂𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻: Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel’s rebel story is a fascinating example of how intuition against the norm can create luck. She was the first designer to dare to take elements from menswear and use them to make women’s clothing more functional. At a time when jersey fabric was primarily used for men’s underwear, Chanel’s intuitive gamble to use it for women’s clothing was unconventional. Her intuition paid off, making her designs both popular and accessible. She said in an interview “Fashion is not simply a matter of clothes. Fashion is in the air, born upon the wind. One intuits it. It is in the sky and on the road.”

People who see themselves as lucky tend to be more decisive. They make swift decisions by tuning into their intuition. They’re more likely to take risks, take action, and expose themselves to new opportunities.

😉 Use 𝗢𝗽𝘁𝗶𝗺𝗶𝘀𝗺 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗣𝗼𝘀𝗶𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗲 𝗘𝘅𝗽𝗲𝗰𝘁𝗮𝗻𝗰𝘆: Blind optimism rarely brews success, but Howard Schultz’s journey with Starbucks is a classic tale of how optimism blend can fundamentally change one’s trajectory, turning challenges into opportunities and creating what appears to be “luck”. In his book “Pour Your Heart Into It: How Starbucks Built a Company One Cup at a Time,” he shared that he faced skepticism from investors. After the original Starbucks owners rejected his idea of creating a coffeehouse culture, Schultz decided to pursue the concept independently and go to investors. He was turned down by 217 of the 242 investors he pitched to.

In my funny resilience talk “Bounce Forward With a Smile”, I share 5 to 7 tips on how to recycle the waste of adversity into fertilizer. Wiseman’s studies suggested that individuals who consider themselves lucky often find something positive about an “unlucky” situation and transform setbacks into springboards for new ventures fueling their remarkable fortune. In general, these lucky people tend to possess a more positive attitude towards life, are happier, and notice and capitalize on opportunities that others might miss.

😉 Be Flexible: As the COVID-19 pandemic erupted, Uber faced a major crisis with plummeting ride-hailing demand due to lockdowns and travel restrictions. Recognizing the increased demand for contactless food delivery, Uber Eats stepped into the spotlight. They invested heavily in marketing and promotions attracting new customers and restaurants to the platform. They streamlined delivery operations focusing on efficiency and contactless procedures and expanded their offerings by adding grocery delivery, alcohol delivery, and partnerships with convenience stores.

“Lucky” folks often possess that invisible advantage. If plans change, they’re ready to pivot like a nimble dancer, finding luck in new circumstances. The ability to adapt to changing circumstances is a key factor in capitalizing on opportunities and overcoming and adapting to life’s unpredictable twists and turns.

😉Do it “Easier Done Than Said,” said Lenny Ravich, the humorist and guru of optimism who said: “People often hide behind the excuse of ‘Easier Said than Done’ to avoid taking risks, only to later regret missed opportunities, while the achievements of those who dared prove it to be a testament to the contrary.”

In the early 1990s, PepsiCo was facing stiff competition in the beverage industry. Indra Nooyi, a rising star who became later the CEO was brimming with vision. She recognized the need for diversification into healthy food and beverages, she zeroed in on Tropicana, the undisputed king of orange juice. Nooyi led the charge in convincing PepsiCo’s board of directors to acquire Tropicana, despite some initial resistance. She saw Tropicana as a strategic fit that would complement PepsiCo’s existing product lineup and provide a stronger foothold in the health and wellness sector. Her decisiveness came through in the final negotiations. When the acquisition was on the line, Nooyi said, “We are buying it. Period. If we don’t buy it, I’m not sure we have a future in juices.”

Being decisive is often linked to creating one’s own luck because it involves taking action and making choices that can lead to new opportunities and outcomes. Decisiveness allows individuals to seize moments, make the most of situations, and move forward, even under uncertainty. In contrast, unlucky individuals often have a knack for talking themselves out of opportunities, ignoring serendipity by focusing on reasons to avoid action rather than taking a chance. As Woody Allen succinctly puts it: “80 percent of success is showing up.”

In conclusion: If you’re reading this, you’re luckier than many. Your access to electricity, computing, and the internet is a privilege that eludes countless people worldwide who lack basics like housing, personal safety, and clean water.

In the tapestry of life, luck isn’t merely a whimsical stroke of chance but can serve you as a skillful embroidery of attitude, action, and awareness.

As Dr. Tina Seeling from Standford shared in her famous TED talk about luck: “Luck is rarely a lightning strike, isolated and dramatic. It’s much more like the wind, blowing constantly. Sometimes it’s calm, and sometimes it blows in gusts, and sometimes it comes from directions that you didn’t even imagine.” Therefore we need to use our “sails” through tiny behaviors of taking small risks that catch these winds of luck, thereby creating our fortunate circumstances.

“Lucky by Design” elucidates the essence of luck as not just serendipity but the offspring of preparation meeting opportunity. By embracing openness to experiences, listening to intuition, wielding optimism, flexing adaptability, and choosing decisiveness to take risks, we can architect our own fortune.

Benjamin Franklin, in his renowned “Poor Richard’s Almanack,” revived the profound quote: “God helps those who help themselves.”But helping ourselves goes beyond self because we nourish our soul when have can share our luck.

Growing up in a loving modest home, my parents, who were resilient refugee survivors, instilled in us profound lessons through their hard work and generosity. Despite the need to be prudent, they consistently felt lucky that they were able to give us and others. Whenever we expressed gratitude to our dad for purchasing something for us, fully aware of the effort and sacrifice behind it, he would respond, “𝑱𝒖𝒔𝒕 𝒃𝒍𝒆𝒔𝒔 𝒎𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚 𝒕𝒊𝒎𝒆 𝑰 𝒐𝒑𝒆𝒏 𝒎𝒚 𝒘𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒕, 𝑰 𝒉𝒂𝒗𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒕𝒐 𝒈𝒊𝒗𝒆 𝒕𝒐 𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒔.”

Embracing this wisdom, let us bolster our fortune by aiding the less fortunate, thereby granting them the opportunity to improve their luck. This act of service not only enhances our lives but also upholds our duty to nurture a better world for all of us.

My father Reuven and my beautiful sister Havi

#CraftYourLuck #Attitude #LuckByDesign #Openness #Intuitive #Choices #Optimistim #SuccessMindset #CreateYourFortune


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