A Simple Tip to Get Good Luck

What do you think it takes to get good luck? There are many opinions on this. One popular one is to prepare yourself so that you will be in the right position to capitalize on opportunities when they come. This is summarized in a Louis Pasteur’s quote that says “Fortune favors the prepared mind.”

But there’s an interesting take on it that I found recently in The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp. There the author gives a simple tip to get good luck: be generous. You should be generous if you want to be lucky. In other words, you should make other people feel lucky to be around you.

The more I think about it, the more it makes sense. Here are three reasons why:

  1. The quality of the people around you reflects your quality
    Twyla Tharp is a choreographer and this is what she writes: To be a great choreographer (or teacher), you have to invest everything you have in your dancer… Without that generosity, you’ll always hold something back. The finished work shows it, and your audience knows it.
  2. People will reciprocate
    Reciprocation is one of the weapons of influence described in Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini. The law of reciprocation is wired into us. Whenever someone does something good for us, we feel obliged to give back to her. The more you are generous, the more people are willing to reciprocate and the more opportunities will come your way.
  3. You will be known as a value provider
    Not only will the people whom you help feel obliged to reciprocate, but they may also tell their friends about you. They may tell their friends about how much value they get from you. That will attract these friends to come to you. They may then tell their friends and it becomes viral. All these people attracted to you means more opportunities for you.

Here are two things you should do to apply this principle:

  1. Increase your value
    Before you can give to others, you need to have something you can give. You need to have something that make other people want to come to you. If you have nothing, how can people feel lucky to be around you? So work hard to increase your value. Build your expertise in the field you choose and expand your network. Coincidentally, it means that you are also preparing for opportunities. By wanting to be generous you build yourself a “prepared mind.”
  2. Share without holding back
    Now that you have something worth sharing, what you need to do is sharing it without holding back. It may take practice to do that, but over time you will feel more and more comfortable to share what you know. Again, the key here is not just to give but to be generous.

Photo by wilhei55

22 Comments

  1. This is great post – the only way to have a great life is to “cultivate” a set of people who are willing to help you at the drop of a hat because you have helped them in the past. Thing is how do you stop people from taking advantage if you’re always being so generous

  2. Hey Donald. Nice post. I like your tips on how to become more lucky, especially the one on the ability to provide value to others. I think the more you are prepared for life and the people you interact with life, you’ll start to find my opportunities and chances that will make you lukcy. As Anthony Robbins once said, “The meeting of preparation with opportunity generates the offspring we call luck.”

  3. It’s amazing how well your suggestion works. If you are generous with your time and emotions, people feel lucky to be around you. To be honest, absolutely no work is needed on your part; just be open and emotionally available for people. The best part is that YOU feel good as well! It’s win-win!

  4. […] reading of a Donald Latumahina’s post : A Simple Tip to Get Good Luck just has interested […]

  5. Hi Donald –

    I don’t often stop to write down things I read in a post but what you wrote about above was enough to get me to do so. Thanks for the great advice…

    Paul

  6. Faramarz,
    That’s a good warning for all of us. We should be generous but we should also be careful not to let people take advantage of us.

    Tristan,
    I agree that luck comes from the meeting of preparation and opportunity. From what I see, being generous increases both your preparation and the chance that

    opportunities come to you.

    Coach J,
    Feeling good is a big reward in itself. Often it’s better to feel fulfilled than to gain reputation or money.

    Paul,
    Glad you find it useful!

  7. Great balance between making yourself more valuable and then sharing that value without holding back. It keeps everything balanced

  8. I agree about share without holding back specially in sharing ideas on how to improve their lives.

  9. Hi, Great blog post! 😀

    Especially “The quality of the people around you reflects your quality” gave me something to think about!

    Thank you,
    Claus D Jensen

  10. […] Life Optimizer – A Simple Tip to Get Good Luck […]

  11. Great post. You really do have to give before you can receive. If you give a smile, you’ll certainly get one in return. If you give somebody a pat on the back, then they will reciprocate one day. We have a wonderful saying in German that the way you call into the woods is the same way your words will come back. You get what you give.

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    What’s a delicious life? Some people like it hot, some people like it sour, while I prefer it to be somewhat bland with a hint of sweetness. Whichever way you prefer, it’s your life. You call the shot. But most probably, your life is not qu…

  13. I disagree.
    Although it seems logical that the more one gives, the more that others would want to reciprocate, it is simply not true, so the article, while apparently well-intended, is built upon a false premise.
    Nice try.

  14. Lee,
    The law of reciprocation isn’t just my opinion. It’s based on scientific research detailed in the Robert Cialdini’s book I mentioned above. How can you say “it is simply not true”? Do you have scientific research to back your claim? I’ll be glad if you share it with us here.

  15. This is a great post and could probably help a lot of people but hopefully not too much but thanks for the tips and tricks to get good luck!

  16. well what goes around comes around.

  17. Thats all good.
    I really think all spoken is right

  18. “3. You will be known as a value provider”

    It is also important to note that value is different from simply money. Although giving/lending money to others is a nice thing to do, you want to steer away from developing connections with others purely on the basis of money. These relationships lack emotional connection and become artificial.

  19. […] and how you view things. Luck is for everyone not just a selected few. Also, here’s a website that gives more […]

  20. my sister has got bad luck how do i get her good luck

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