Xxi) Importance Of Luck


"...Luck tends to play a bigger role in success than we think..."

Sophie McBain 2018

Random factors, that are beyond your control, can have a bearing on your degree of success that are beyond your control, eg where you were born and who your parents are.

"...Only one in eight children from a low income British family is likely to become a higher earner themselves..."

Report from Social Mobility Commission (British government, 2016) as quoted by Sophie McBain 2018

"...our talents and intelligence, as well as qualities such as industriousness or grit, are at least partly inherited, not only through genes but also because they are influenced by our upbringing and the values and opportunities we are presented with..."

Sophie McBain 2018

Linked with this is how lucky you feel, ie

"... People who believe they are lucky tend to attract more good fortune because they create and notice more chance opportunities, are more resilient and more likely to have self-fulfilling positive expectations......unlucky people tend to be more anxious, and their anxiety prevented them from noticing the unexpected..."

Richard Wiseman as quoted by Sophie McBain 2018

Also lucky people tend to be more generous and grateful.


"...People who believe they are lucky tend to achieve more - and we can all create more self-fulfilling positive expectations..."

Sophie McBain 2018

Some examples

- US civil rights movement (on at least 2 occasions, Dr Martin Luther King (US civil rights leader), had some luck that kept the civil rights movement going. One time in Alabama when the white authorities were getting the upper hand against the protests, large numbers of students unexpectedly walked out of schools and universities to join the protest. This swung the momentum back in King's favour. Another time was when the US Federal Court gave an unexpected ruling in King's favour against segregated schooling. On both these occasions, the unexpected positive events were regarded as pivotal turning points in the civil rights movement (SBS 2020c).

- Einstein's thought experiments developed the theory of relativity. He thought that this one was his greatest mistakes but later it turned out to be his greatest discovery!!!!!


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