Are You “Lucky”?
Recently, I was in conversation with a group of people. During the discussion, I shared some exciting professional news. After hearing what I said, one woman rolled her eyes and remarked sarcastically, “You are so lucky … everything always happens for you and is so easy!”
I looked at this person, processing what she just said and in the manner in which she stated it.
In my head my voice screamed, “What on God’s good earth are you talking about?! Do you have any idea what my life is like?” I didn’t respond but it got me thinking.
Many people are under some delusion that things “just happen” for others. That there is some mysterious fairy that grants favor for one and heartache for another. That some people are chosen and blessed and others are doomed, a victim of circumstance. Well, I’m here to tell you, nothing could be further from the truth!
We all have loss, setbacks, heartbreak, and disappointments – things that rock us to our core. But, it’s what WE do in those times that makes us “lucky”, or makes us someone who believes everyone else is “lucky”.
Case in point. Eight years ago, my life was ripped to shreds.
My marriage ended after 23 years. For 20 of those years, I was a stay at home, work from home wife and mother who had given up my career to care for my family. With the divorce, I was left a single mom with no viable means of support. I was a 45-year-old woman with limited professional experience and no idea of how I was going to earn a substantial salary.
At the same time, my mother and sister died, leaving me an orphan as my father and brother had already passed. I had no one to lean on who would back me up the way a parent or sibling could. There was no family support. Every day I feared that I would end up homeless.
I was depressed, lonely, scared, fearful and defeated.
Then, there was a spark within me and I had an idea about something I wanted to create. I didn’t know how to do it but, against all odds (and reason), I ran with it.
During the development of what I wanted to achieve, I encountered people who lied to me, conned me, used me, cheated me, mocked me, abandoned me, talked about me, disappointed me, and did just about any horrible thing you can imagine.
I could have let those people destroy me, but I chose to be “lucky”.
When others said I knew nothing about business, I founded not one, but two companies!
When I was ridiculed for having a dream, I created and hosted a radio show that has been airing for seven years and is now on the #1 AM news/talk station in the New York market and streams on iHeartRadio!
When I was told my work wouldn’t last, I published a magazine that now goes to hundreds of thousands of readers each month!
When “radio pros” viewed me as some “crazy middle aged chick who fell off the turnip truck”, I booked Jack Canfield, Deepak Chopra, John Gray, don Miguel Ruiz, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Joel Osteen, and countless others for the show!
When I am laughed at for being a “joke”, I derive inspiration from the internationally renown professionals with whom I enjoy a mutually respected relationship.
So, how did I get to be so “lucky”? I worked my butt off – with sweat and imagination. I didn’t leave my future to chance; I created my destiny.
If I could overcome my challenges, anyone can. But you must get your head in the game. My 10 strategies to increase your odds of being “lucky”:
• Release expectations that someone is going to give you what you want. There are no handouts.
• Remove limitations and the box. If it doesn’t exist, find a way to make it happen. The more unorthodox, the better!
• Rely on yourself with the understanding that no one is going to do it for you. You must create it or earn it
• Eliminate all excuses from your vocabulary, because quite frankly, no one cares if you hit traffic, had a tough night, felt sick, or any other story you tell yourself.
• Have integrity. Make your word your bond delivering what you promise or go down giving it all you have.
• Stop burning bridges. Just because you believe you “are done” with someone doesn’t mean that person isn’t going to show up in unexpected places.
• Understand that when you speak unkindly about a person, he or she usually finds out.
• Develop a thick skin and stop participating in gossip. What others say about you is none of your business. It’s a waste of time and energy.
• Focus on your abilities rather than your limitations.
• Become a sponge for knowledge learning what you need in order to get the job done.
My journey has been anything but “easy”. But, it has been possible.
So, no matter what you are going through in life, no matter what the challenge, there is always hope. There is always a way. As Benjamin Franklin said, “I am a strong believer in luck and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.”