Recently, when Tom Brokaw was being interviewed about his book, A Lucky Life Interrupted: A Memoir of Hope, he said, “I believe you make your own luck. My motto is, It’s always a mistake not to go … sometimes I get in way over my head, but then I think, I’ll work my way out of this somehow. A big part of making your own luck is just charging out of the gate every morning.”

Webster’s definition says luck finds us…

luck noun| ‘lək :success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions

a hand holding a four leaf clover (very shallow depth of field)I do believe in luck but I’m convinced we have to be ready with eyes wide open, putting ourselves in prime position to take action, in order for luck to even have a chance to change the trajectory of our lives!

Three Ways to Increase Your Chances of Luck Finding You

Show Up with a Clear Purpose and Vision” … charging out of the gate every morning.”  A clear vision of what you want and why, will provide the momentum you need to bolt out of the gate every morning ready to seize the day. You have to know your stuff, to be ready to share a crisp and captivating message that people can see and want to be part of. You make your own luck by doing what you do best, studying your craft and being ready to take advantage of opportunities that come your way.

Make Connections and Be Intentional – “It’s always a mistake not to go.” How you show up, even when you don’t want to, will define you and your ability to make change happen. Be intentional about your contribution and value-add on all fronts by approaching situations with more WIFU (What’s in it for us?) than WIFM (What’s in it for me?). Luck has a funny way of finding itself in places you might never consider. The multiplier of those as passionate as you are is worth the effort to go, meet interesting people, challenge your thinking, learn something new with the intention of building bridges and relationships.

Test your true intentions by asking yourself:

  • Am I listening and interested in what problems other people are trying to solve?
  • Am I inspiring others to think big?
  • Am I lending my opinion and being resourceful to help others get closer to their goals?
  • Am I looking for connections between what I want & what others want?

Take The Risk  “I’ll work my way out of this somehow.” If your goals and aspirations don’t instill a bit of fear and anxiety in you, what’s the point? Don’t be afraid of what you don’t know. In her book, Make Waves: Be the One to Start Change at Work and in Life, Patti Johnson says, “Wave Makers are predisposed to action, even when they don’t have all the answers.” Tom Brokaw didn’t always know what was around the corner, but he built his 40+ years career success and reputation on taking the risk.

Luck is fleeting. How will you put luck on your side and make sure you give yourself every opportunity to make the best of it?

Shelli Walker is a Partner with PeopleResults. Follow her on twitter @ShelliWalker or connect via email at swalker@people-results.com.

Patti Johnson