Luck is defined by the English dictionary as “the good things that happen to you, that do not come from your abilities or effort”. This suggests that luck is something supernatural and a given birthright, dictated by fate and natural occurrences. However, is it so? Psychologist Richard Wiseman found that luck is completely a matter of how we choose to look at our lives after years of investigation. The people who consider themselves lucky are the ones who recognize their good fortune, wherever it happens, and look at the world through that lens. Luck also means health and staying alive in China. For me, I have always been jealous of rich people for decades, I always blame my family and my destiny. However, I met a rich friend in 2018. He taught me a lesson that has changed my life and makes me feel lucky. He taught me that to be a happy person, I need to change my mind, be open to possibilities, and try to be optimistic.
Change your mind can help you to be lucky. Try to think that you are a dying patient, how do you face the rest of your life? You are negatively downcast every day or full of hope for the rest of the day? You may blame that why so unlucky and these things happen to you, but is it the case? Research from the Lee Kum Sheung Center at Harvard University shows that people who are hopeful of living have a lower chance of dying prematurely from stroke, heart disease, and even cancer. A hopeful person also tends to have healthier coping styles. When facing challenges, they accept circumstances that can’t be changed and create contingency plans when things don’t work.
Open to opportunities is not only about willing to have a conversation about a new job. It is also attention to people and things around. When I was frustrated about failing a job interview in 2016, a TV show by Derren Brown ‘The Secret of Luck’ catches my eye. Derren Brown makes an experiment to discover how people can make themselves luckier. The experiment starts with a statue of a dog in the town’s local park. Derren Brown created a rumor that touching the statue will bring you luck. Almost every resident is feeling luckier after touching it, except Wayne, who despicable himself as a person out of luck. So, Derren decided to see if he could help Wayne find some luck, as he believes that Wayne was just missing some good opportunities. Derren made up three opportunities by a winning scratch card, a £20 reward survey, and a £50.00 note on the pavement right in front of Wayne’s path. However, he missed it all. Sometimes ‘luck’ is just around you, just waiting for you to find it.
And finally, about optimism. An optimistic is a person with a positive attitude, who believes and hopes things would turn out well. This mind is most important for success, for improving your life, and the most important - for staying alive. By the researcher collected a large longitudinal sample in the mid-1960s, medical patients have been classified as optimistic, mixed, or pessimistic. Optimism was operationalized using parts of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. The researchers found that for every 10-point increase in a person’s score on their optimism scale, the risk of early death decreased by 19% (Maruta, Colligan, Malinchoc, and Offord, 2000). As humans, we naturally want more. It’s natural to have a higher desire and jealous of someone who has a better life. However, it’s argued that this is the reason why people put themselves as ‘unlucky’, as they focus on what they don’t have instead of what they do have. We all having a healthy body and we are still alive. A thankful heart is a key to feeling like a lucky person.
In conclusion, luck is absolutely in our hands, no one is particularly lucky. Our destiny is connected with our attitude to life. By starting to make changes today, we can have a wonderful and happy life.