Are you lucky? Do you want to be? Because you can increase your luck skills by practicing – seriously!
Christine Carter demystifies how luck works at the Greater Good Science Center where she is a sociologist and author of books on luck. In her efforts to examine luck she came across other research by Richard Wiseman who thinks luck comes down to observation and action. Over the last decade his research has revealed how we perceive luck and how we tend to miss out on “lucky” experiences due to anxious blindness.
Wiseman didn’t stop there. He turned these findings into a “luck school” where people could learn luck-inducing techniques based on four main principles of luck: maximizing chance opportunities, listening to your intuition, expecting good fortune, and turning bad luck to good. The strategies included using meditation to enhance intuition, relaxation, visualizing good fortune, and talking to at least one new person every week. A month later, he followed up with participants. Eighty percentsaid they were happier, luckier people.
“I thought if Wiseman can train people to be lucky, you can certainly teach those skills to our kids, and they have other really good side effects too,” says Carter, like better social skills and a stronger sense of gratitude. She came up with a few basic strategies for parents to teach their kids, including being open to new experiences, learning to relax, maintaining social connections, and (yes) talking to strangers. All of these techniques had one theme in common—being more open to your environment both physically and emotionally.
Luck is a factor in your life and it can make a huge difference, you can win the lottery or end up crazy in debt due to unforeseen incidents. Some may have good or bad luck, but regardless it’s something that one shouldn’t ignore – especially if you are one of the positively lucky ones.
People who acknowledge their own good luck are more likely to get more in the future, and it makes them more forgiving to those with bad luck. Be conscious of chance and be grateful for what the fates g
In an unexpected twist, we may even find that recognizing our luck increases our good fortune. Social scientists have been studying gratitude intensively for almost two decades, and have found that it produces a remarkable array of physical, psychological, and social changes. Robert Emmons of the University of California at Davis and Michael McCullough of the University of Miami have been among the most prolific contributors to this effort. In one of their collaborations, they asked a first group of people to keep diaries in which they noted things that had made them feel grateful, a second group to note things that had made them feel irritated, and a third group to simply record events. After 10 weeks, the researchers reported dramatic changes in those who had noted their feelings of gratitude. The newly grateful had less frequent and less severe aches and pains and improved sleep quality. They reported greater happiness and alertness. They described themselves as more outgoing and compassionate, and less likely to feel lonely and isolated. No similar changes were observed in the second or third groups. Other psychologists have documented additional benefits of gratitude, such as reduced anxiety and diminished aggressive impulses.