And the winner is....Perseverance. No wait, Luck!!?

It is unbelievable how time flies... 2012 is almost over! Before we get all gung ho to welcome 2013 , I wanted to share one last post in 2012.

There is this one universal question I've heard over and over again....and I could not escape falling prey to it either. This one question can be asked many different ways, like:

1) How are some people more lucky than the others?

2) Is there such a thing as 'good karma'?

3) How come he/she is always at the right place at the right time and I am not?

Well you may have heard the basic point of this question in many different flavors, but the fundamental conundrum here is: What does it mean to be hard-working, persevering and persistent in our efforts, dreams and goals if there is such a thing as 'good luck' that always trumps all of this?

I cannot have such a conundrum gain momentum in my mind and just let it go!

So I was thinking hard and these are tough questions to answer, yet a lot of people seem to keep asking it and answering it with truths that are more 'convenient' than 'real'.

Having come from an Indian school of thought, it's no surprise when I hear 'karma' as the universal truth to this quest. People have explained this karma in multiple ways, like if there is a cause, then there is an effect. If you do something bad or good, it will always come around to you!

Somehow I am still troubled with this explanation. Don't get me wrong, I am not being a proponent for or against karma. I am just saying, I am not able to get my head around this "do good and good will come, do bad and bad will come to you" theory. Maybe I am not old or wise enough to embrace it.

Either way, the question still remains. Like, when I see an extremely 'nice' human being suffer or a so-called venomous mind prevail and prosper - it angers me beyond any reason.

But, until 'I' find the truth for myself, no point throwing internal tantrums, right?

So after more internal prodding, picking my brain and reading the works of great minds, it turns out the answer that seemed to convince me the most was not unheard of or novel or anything. It is something I have always known and taught but as always seldom practiced and consciously acknowledged.

The answer goes something like this:

Yes, it 'appears' like -

* Some always get what they want

* Some are always at the right time and place

* Some are just 'born' lucky

But this thing called good luck or good karma is not genetic or pre-disposed to just some of these 'privileged' few... But it is 'an attitude some people have towards life'.

Yes it's that simple!

Here, let me expand on what this means:

I recently read what Professor Richard Wiseman had to say about this in his book: "The Luck Factor".

He summarizes the answer to this million-dollar question in 4 steps:

1) These 'lucky' people are always looking for and open to new and exciting opportunities. This in turn maximizes their chances of encountering something good or interesting in their pursuits. They take themselves seriously, but tend to look at life as a whole in a more light heartened, 'big-picture' perspective.

2) These 'lucky' people are always listening to their gut, intuitions and mostly go by it. Rather than analyze-paralyze or stay away from the 'conventional truths', these people just go with their 'lucky hunches'.

3) These 'lucky' people truly believe their lives are full of good fortune and their futures are filled with a lot of luck and goodwill. This belief almost becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and domino-effects in to more luck and good will!

4) Lastly, these 'lucky' people have inculcated psychological mind sets to overcome failures like they would handle very small obstacles in the way. They always have a 'it could have been so much worse' attitude rather than mull over failures and misfortunes.

When I read and re-read the above 4 points, the truth of the matter was just staring in my face.

It's not like these 'lucky' people ARE: always just at right places and right times; great with their timing; or just born with some intangible luck!

And it's also not like these 'lucky' people ARE NOT: hard-working, persistent, disciplined or persevering!

They have just learned and trained to think that if they consistently work hard, believe in themselves and always go for their pursuits without missing a beat, this thing called 'good luck' will automatically smile upon them.

obama-smiles

Then it dawned on me - the best example to prove these 4 points would be none other than the President of the US of A: Mr. Barack Hussein Obama!

I am not propagating any political statements or affinities by saying this. Just quoting the accomplishments of a person whose background, struggles, dreams and pursuits are not that different from a lot people.

Having said that, if Mr.Obama is not hard working, persistent, confident, competitive and persevering, I don't know who is!

And get this, I've read and heard from people in his close quarters that he considers himself... yes 'lucky'!!

Darn it!  If I could just learn to think and live like this how much luckier can I be? This is the most liberating thought for me in 2012: Luck is not pre-disposed or genetic, just a way of life.

There, my last epiphany for 2012!

If I have to summarize everything I've said in this post with one sentence, no one could have nailed it better than the great Thomas Jefferson, who so wisely said:

“I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.”

On that note, HAPPY 2013 to all you 'Lucky' folks! :)