6 Ways to Make Your Own Luck

imagesCAADD1X9There’s a Latin proverb that says, “What you think of yourself is much more important than what others think of you.” So true, because it is your thoughts and your words that will have the biggest impact on your future success.

Luck is the residue of design. Accurate or not? We often make assumptions that someone else’s success is based on luck rather than the hard work of preparation. Of course the lottery winner has done little more than purchase a ticket. However, some might posit that their series of numbers or specific rituals are part of their potentially winning process. Do you believe your raffle ticket will be selected or are you the person claiming to never be a winner?

According to Richard Wiseman, Ph.D., and author of The Luck Factor, believe it or not, luck is not a matter of chance. In fact, experts suggest that there are specific things you can do to enhance your luck quotient.

1. Speak Up– Before beginning your day, stand in front of the mirror and say aloud, “This is my lucky day!” Thinking about something makes you consider it, but hearing it actually makes you believe it.

2. Smile- A 10-year study on the nature of luck shows that “lucky” people smile twice as often as “unlucky” people. Maintaining an open body posture, with arms uncrossed and direct eye contact, indicates approachability.

3. Say Hello- You could be in the right place at the right time. Begin a conversation with someone you would bit typically approach at the gym, at work or while waiting on a line.

4. Visualize Your Luck- Before your biggest hurdle of the day, close your eyes, relax and visualize yourself as lucky. Think about the people, sights and sounds you will encounter and imagine a welcoming, successful outcome.

5. Make a Phone Call- Studies have shown that lucky people usually have more “long-lasting” attachments, more old friends, than unlucky people. Contact a former classmate, old friend or someone you have not spoken to in the last 6-months. Re-connection on a regular basis enlarges your spheres of influence.

6. Make a List- Focus on all of the good things that have happened to you in the previous 24-hours. “Unlucky” people allow failure to throw them off course, whereas “lucky” people force themselves to concentrate on the positive, no matter what.

• How lucky are you on a scale of 1-10?
• Select 1-step daily that you will incorporate into your customary practices
• Which actions were most successful?
• Share your results


Bring on Serenity

1028789_origEmotions are contagious. “You can catch a mood, just like a cold,” according to author, Marco Iacoboni, MD. He continues, “Spend time with happy people and you’ll eventually feel happier yourself.” Likewise, we all know the energy vampires in our lives who can easily shift the energy to a negative state unless you are prepared to deflect or avoid interactions with them. You can practice the acts of self-care and positive thinking in the same way you build up your biceps; practice and concentrate on happy moments.

Bringing on serenity can happen in various ways. Let’s focus on the 4-S configuration of smiling, singing, sweating and soothing for quick reference.

Smile: Others are more inclined to mirror back a smile to you. It can lift your mood, increase serotonin levels in the brain and bring a sense of calm. People will respond to you in kind. Think of a smile as “paying it forward.”
• Sing: Whether your vocalizing is limited to the shower or not, try out a new tune that’s all yours. There’s scientific research that a sensory organ like the ear can trigger a response in the hypothalamus that creates a pleasurable buzz. Singing about your worries to a simple tune adds humor to the mix.
• Sweat: Get to the gym or outdoors and move. Increased blood flow to the brain, and engaging your body in simple exercises promotes the growth of new neurons that are less reactive to stress.
• Soothe: Playback positive memories of activities with loved ones. When you visualize images of times when you were in a safe, nurturing space you feel cared for and less stressed.

Serenity need not be an elusive skill known only to Tibetan monks. With practice, these techniques can take you from Zero to Zen in less time than lacing up your sneakers for a quick run.