So being Irish and all, I couldn’t resist sharing a little story:
Whether you are sporting a green outfit or you forgot to (like yours truly) and are now in fear of getting pinched – the topic of luck is an interesting one.
There’s a story about a farmer who had two horses for plowing his fields. One night a thunderstorm spooks the horses and they hop the fence and run away. The next day the neighborhood gathers around and says: “Oh what bad luck.”
And the farmer says: “Maybe”
The next day, the two horses return with three wild horses. Once again the neighborhood gathers around and says: “Oh my, now you have 5 horses. What good luck!”
The farmer replies: “Maybe”
The next day the farmer’s son is training one of the horses and is bucked off and breaks his leg. The neighborhood gathers around and says: “That terrible horse. What bad luck!”
And the farmer says… “Maybe”
The next day, an army comes into town and rounds up all the children to fight in a nearby battle – except one: the farmer’s son. The neighborhood once again says: “Your son was spared, what good luck.”
And the farmer says…
I share this story because people are very quick to label something or call it good luck (or bad luck).
But what if it wasn’t so simple?
What if it was up to us to find the advantage in bad luck?
For instance, in high school I never would have thought that slipping a disc in my lower back while lifting would be good luck. However, it allowed me to come back stronger than ever and gave me a greater appreciation for core strength (and the importance of good form) – something that would become invaluable working with back pain clients later on.
As legendary investor Ray Dalio once said:
“I have found it helpful to think of my life as if it were a game in which each problem I face is a puzzle I need to solve. By solving the puzzle, I get a gem in the form of a principle that helps me avoid the same sort of problem in the future.”
Another example - years ago, two steel companies both faced the challenge of competitors’ cheap imported steel. When asked about the problem, the first CEO said:
“Our first, second, and third problems are imports.”
The other CEO saw the situation in a very different light and called the challenge of imports as a stroke of green fortune, a blessing:
“Aren’t we lucky, steel is heavy, and they have to ship it all the way across the ocean giving us a huge advantage.”
Maybe your challenge is a blessing in disguise.
And maybe that’s how you find good luck more often.
Happy St. Patty’s Day,
P.S. Be on the lookout for April’s Mind-Body Breakthrough Newsletter – where I’ll share one of my all-time favorite superfood recipes… the psychology of ‘athletes high’… and ways to link up more positive emotions to workouts. And maybe a few other surprises. Get onboard at:
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