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Is It Luck or Good Planning?

November 25, 2010

Luck by definition is “Fate, chance regarded as bringer of good or ill fortune; series of events, occurring as though by chance, which affect the individual.

For many years I believed that some people were simply more ‘lucky’ than others.  For some people life seemed to fall into place, smoothly transitioning from one event to another with fortunate outcomes.  I believed that people could be very lucky in one area of their lives and not so lucky in other areas.

A few years ago I had the great good fortune of reading a quote that was attributed to Albert Einstein ‘ Luck is what  happens when opportunity meets preparedness’ or something of that sort.  I have since found that the quote actually came from a Roman philosopher living in the mid – lst century and read as follows:  “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity”.  I find it very interesting that someone living so long ago, when belief in superstition, fate and chance was the norm, could have such insight into reality.

In the world of art there are many still caught in the old paradigm and belief that chance and accidental happenings rule the outcome of events.  I have heard artists say that another artist is ‘lucky’ to be in that gallery,  ‘lucky’ to have those connections, ‘lucky’ to have a unique style.  Where, in fact, at no time did ‘luck’ enter this picture.  The chain of events that spawn a certain outcome do not happen by chance but rather by good planning, hard work and perseverance.

Each one of us are given opportunities daily that we willing chose to act upon or not.  My husband has driven my family nuts with his Yoda quote of “do…or …do not, there is no try”!  To his credit, I think he has basically hit the nail on the head(Yoda, that is, ha).  For those who plan, work hard and have their eyes and hearts open to opportunity when it ‘knocks’ , shall they reap the rewards.

For the painters among us, doing the work is only part of  the job.  Stepping out of our comfort zone and letting go of past fears is instrumental to success.  The next time someone says ‘we are putting a group together for a show next spring, do you want to join us”.    DO!  The next time you walk by a gallery that is inviting to you, where you can see your work hanging and wonder whether or not you should go in.  DO!  The next time your family and friends talk you into writing a blog or an ebook.  DO!  The next time you let your mind wander to thoughts of inadequacies, limitations or wishing for luck to be on your side.  DO NOT!

Seems that the only limits we might have are the limits in our dreams.  Be prepared, be open, opportunity knocks a lot more often than once.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jae permalink
    November 25, 2010 12:50 pm

    Another brilliant blog! And very appropriately timed, I might add 🙂

    In a book called Mindset by Carol Dweck, the author talks about certain capabilities (such as intelligence, creativity, athleticism, etc.) as being ‘natural’ … or as you said in your blog ‘luck’. Then she goes on to cite numerous comprehensive research studies that prove just the opposite … that, in most cases, they are as you suggested, preparedness meeting opportunity.

    Having said that, even when preparedness meets opportunity, the prepared one must be willing to seize the opportunity … or in other words … DO it!

    Well DONE!!

    xo Jae

  2. November 25, 2010 5:02 pm

    These are the wise words of a teacher! 🙂 Great post!

  3. November 25, 2010 10:09 pm

    Great words! “Do or do not, there is no try” is a fantastic quote!
    When preparedness meets opportunity is so true. You needn’t look farther than TED.com to find 1000 examples of this in one place. Once you have found your passion, put your heart into it and you will find success.

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