The answer to that question depends on your definition of “luck.” defines luck as, the force that seems to operate for good or ill in a person's life, as in shaping circumstances, events, or opportunities.”

I have trouble with the word “force” in that definition. It would imply that luck is somehow directed at some and away from others by some unseen cosmic power. I don’t believe that’s the case.

I believe in most cases we make our own luck. I’m not about to deny that bad things happen to good people. But I also believe that your own efforts and actions might be the force for your good or bad luck.

Put Luck In Perspective

To some, surviving an automobile accident would be lucky but others would rule that the toll on the automobile and all the related expenses could be considered unlucky. I guess it depends on your perspective as to what being truly lucky is.

A single, split second event, can alter our lives forever. September 11th, loss of a loved one, winning the lottery, or the birth of a child can completely redirect our chosen pathway. Some we can plan for and many we cannot. Stuff happens and we are pressed into dealing with it.

Look At The Extremes

When an event happens we judge the “luck” of that event compared to the best that could happen against the worst that could happen. The closer it is to one of those two extremes determines whether it’s “good luck” or “bad luck.”

Determining the degree of luck might not happen immediately. Many professional athletes make millions but lose it all by poor money management. So are they lucky or unlucky? People win the lottery only to find out later it ruined their lives. Are they lucky or unlucky?

Lucky Rabbit’s Foot?

Do you carry a lucky charm? Go around the ladder rather than walk under it? Keep an eye out for black cats? Try to never spill the salt? Even through I don’t believe in that force I talked about earlier I still don’t “tempt fate.” I suppose its natural to assume that a little outside help can’t hurt. It’s sort of like asking for advice from the guy on the next barstool.

Some Final Thoughts

Many so-called experts believe that the attitude you have when you leave the house each morning plays a big part if how your day will go. Many of us feel we are lucky just to make it through the day. Others get a clean bill of health from a physical.

Sometimes good events come in groups. You get that parking spot close to work, find a buck on the street, get the promotion, then worry about when it will all come crashing down around you.

We often feel that if we are blessed with a series of good luck then the pendulum has to eventually swing back the other way and bad luck is on it’s way. There’s the old saying, “If it weren’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all.” We’ve all had days like that but we survived. I guess the best way to end this blog post is in the paraphrased words of “Dirty Harry.” “Do you feel lucky?”