The past decade has taught me a fundamental lesson on how life works. Consistent and intentional action are the greatest drivers of serendipity. Purposeful action and a commitment to consistent follow through is like positioning yourself for luck.
We often think of luck as an act of fate, something that is outside of our control. We hope to be exposed to good luck, good fortune, an event that changes our lives for the better such as winning the lottery. On the flip side, we pray that we avoid bad luck like getting seriously ill with cancer.
But that’s not what luck actually is. Luck is the chance that a particular outcome or event will come to pass. When you view luck as a event driven or outcomes based, it’s easier to explore the components that lead to the outcomes. Taking a closer look at luck, I’ve come to realize that it’s not always purely fate that is at play.
Luck is actually an element of statistics.
To be specific, luck is a major component of probability. It is the chance a less common outcome will come to pass. In terms of probabilities, luck is frequently the small percentage of the less likely events that are possible to take place. Sometimes that number is extremely small.
A percentage of nearly infinite possible outcomes can be a seemingly trivial number. But its important none the less to think of luck this way because probabilistic outcomes can be influenced. Intentional and consistent action can help shift the probability of a chance event to a greater percentage.
Think of intentional and consistent action as the good luck charms that influence probability.
As an example, think about building an audience on the internet. The chance of a person waking up one day and writing one message on some obscure social media app in the far reaches of the internet and creating an audience is small. Thinking about it from the perspective of probability, the chance of being found is a very small percentage.
But what if that same person were to write another post the next day. And the next day. And continue writing for daily for the next year. There would be 365 pieces of content floating around the internet with their name on it. Still there is a small probability of creating an audience but through this consistent action that probability becomes larger.
But what if more intentional action is taken, in this case, crafting a unique message? Using the content to engage people that would find it interesting and use the content to try and build a community. The consistency and intentional action combine to further increase the probability that people will engage with the content and come together to discuss it.
But calling it luck at this point doesn’t really fit anymore. The shift in attitude from fatalism to one where we work to influence probable outcomes seems like it needs a different name. A different way to highlight the control that a person has over the outcomes the experience. Some word to reflect the work put in to increase the odds in our favor.
What is clear is that you have control of inputs that impact life. Intentional action and consistency are the inputs that allow you to rise above your fatalistic peers and influence outcomes in your favor.