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  • Cameron Finlay

Why Are Some People Luckier Than Others?

Luck isn’t just about blind chance or circumstance, it’s also influenced by behavior, positioning, and mindset, and those you can control and so make yourself luckier.

Neurologist James Austin, in 1978, stated there were four types of luck that need to be understood:

Blind Luck

This is what it sounds like, success or failure that happens by complete chance, where little can be done to influence the outcome. Think of a winning hand at cards.

Luck from Motion

This form is more under our control, creating ‘motion and collisions through hustle and energy’. Say, you meet a dream client at networking. It’s blind luck you were both there, but it’s Motion if you attend more of such events. It used to be meeting more people, now successful connections can be made through blogs, newsletters, podcasts, webinars, etc.

Luck from Awareness

This is luck that can be recognised from far away, through some combination of openness, curiosity, optimism, and experience. Cultivating these traits will make you luckier.

Luck from Uniqueness

This is the possession of an unusual combination of skills, experiences, and interests which are not the same as everyone else has. These make new and innovative connections because you stand out and attract opportunities. Even think eccentrics or weird and unusual (Apple and Steve Jobs). Uniqueness is more than interesting, it’s also luckier.

These are true too of opportunities. Spotting an opportunity is relatively easy, but you have to do the work long before any potential return and before you see that opportunity, like gain skills, experience, and even resources. It’s also evident that the exact return could not be determined or known.

So, you expand your skills and knowledge, acquire resources, save money, develop leadership, and improve fitness. This requires working hard, delivering value, and putting in effort and sacrifice, all about delivering greater value and not just expecting to be paid more. Too many now expect more before they will consider doing more.

An opportunity is only truly an opportunity if you’re in a position to take advantage of it, earning success through effort and sacrifice.

Take the opposite approach to ‘get more first’. Decide how you define success, which will be different for everyone, then plan the steps needed to be able to achieve that desired success.

Cam Finlay (Arnold & Finlay Accountants & Planners Pty Ltd)

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