Do you believe in luck? I believe in it, but I’m an optimist at heart. There’s been numerous scientific articles about how luck isn’t real, about how it’s something the human brain makes up to explain pleasant, and sometimes unpleasant, unknown occurrences. For some reason society has deemed that the Irish are notoriously lucky. Which is ironic because if you read anything of their history they’re actually extremely unlucky, potato famine anyone?
But it is St. Patrick’s Day so let’s try to focus on the positive here. Today is a lucky day. And I for one have been extremely lucky lately. My business conference is literally falling into place before my eyes, I have interviews set up for possible internships I’m incredibly excited about, and my pessimistic mood that has hung over me the past month or so has disappeared. Yesterday I found myself smiling at how cold the wind is and how nice it felt. I’m not even kidding.
The catch is while I do believe some people are naturally luckier than others there is also power and validity in people who create their own luck. Maybe today when we say “May the luck of the Irish be with you!” we actually mean “Grab a pint, have a friendly conversation with a stranger, and keep your eyes open for any opportunity that comes your way.”
So here’s how I would create some luck while spreading holiday cheer this weekend. These are foolproof. Trust me I’ve been testing them out
1. Get in the holiday spirit.
It’s St. Patty’s Day! Everyone is Irish today and I mean everyone. I may look Irish, but I’m only a tiny bit (somewhere around 5-10%). But how much Irish you are, or aren’t, doesn’t matter. Embrace the Irish. Be outgoing and friendly. Then maintain that attitude for the rest of the week. Maybe minus the alcohol. People have responsibilities you know.
2. Decorate with green.
Go all out. Green clothes, green banners, green food, green drinks, green face paint, and whatever else you can think of. But don’t stop there. Get a plant. Psychologically speaking plants are good for your mental health. They release oxygen into the air and frankly are pretty nice to look at. Green is an incredibly relaxing color to have in your home. So get some green in there.
3. Buy someone a drink.
Or as T-Pain would say, “Imma buy you a drank.” Preferably a Guinness or a whiskey to keep up the festivities. Or a sweet cocktail. Or a coffee or soda. Whatever suits your fancy. Then whoever you are buying a drink for be sure to strike up a conversation. Meeting new people and making new friends can lead to some great opportunities.
4. Make some potatoes.
I am not a cook, but I have never ruined mashed or baked potatoes before. They are delicious and literally foolproof. It doesn’t have to be potatoes though. Pizza is just as great. Or if you’re on a healthy kick try a smoothie, protein shake, or a salad. I’m a bigger fan of potatoes, pizza, or other comfort foods then I am of the healthy options, but to each their own. The next step is to share that food with someone. We all know the kindergarten saying, ‘sharing is caring.’ So share. People will be flattered you thought of them. You’ll feel good for being generous. Good energy attracts good energy. Be a bit more generous and maybe some luck will come your way.
5. Be on the lookout.
This is more about perspective than anything else. Everything can be an opportunity if you look at it the right way. Keep your ears and eyes open. Ask questions if you’re curious. Seek out opportunities. If something terrible happens, sit down and think what can possibly come out of this that is good. For example, when my car broke down for the second time this year, my first thought was something along the lines of “this sucks” but with much more anger and frustration. My second thought was “I can’t afford a new car.” My third thought was actually where I discovered the opportunity. I’ve been trying to figure out ways of eating out less. It’s an expensive habit I developed because when asked how much I enjoy cooking on a scale of 1 to 10 the answer is, and always has been, a solid 3. I can do it, but I don’t enjoy it until I’m eating. Going out to eat is much more convenient and enjoyable. But with my car broken down, I stayed in and made lunch and dinner every day for a week. I didn’t hate it as much anymore. I even bought a cookbook. I took this negative experience and turned it into an opportunity to save a tiny bit of money. It just happened to work.
6. Take a risk.
What’s the worse that could happen? Death? If you know that, don’t do it. But if it’s just being turned down for the job, sounding dumb in class, making a fool of yourself, then go for it. If we don’t do things that scare us, will we ever do something worthwhile? I was scared to go to Europe. Actually I was about 5% scared and 95% excited, so bad example. I took a risk signing up for a half marathon late last year. Technically, I am in the process of failing. I’m not doing the half marathon, because physically and mentally I was not prepared for it. And it sucks to say that. What’s the worst that can happen in this case? Well, I ended up disappointing myself a lot more than others were disappointed in me. I’m not trying to glorify quitting, but the power of knowing yourself as a person. As I’m writing this I realized I haven’t taken nearly as many risks as I thought. I should take my own advice more often.
7. Believe your lucky.
Have some faith that things will turn out the way they should in due time. Patience is not one of my strong suits, and essentially the main reason I’ve never been able to successfully go fishing and why I decided I didn’t want to be a teacher. But if you can get yourself to stop for a second, take ten deep breaths, and find a way to focus on something else, some luck might come your way. If you think good things will happen, good things will happen. Like I said before, good energy attracts good energy. If you believe you are a lucky person, then you are.
May misfortune follow you the rest of your life and never catch up.
So have a happy, and safe, St. Patty’s Day! May the luck of the Irish be with you.