In the mid ‘90s, the actress Rosario Dawson was just a regular 15-year-old who made a fateful, lucky decision one day. She left her family’s New York City apartment and went to sit out on the building’s front stoop. It just so happened that the filmmakers of the 1995 film Kids were scouting locations in her neighborhood on that same day. “They wouldn’t have seen me otherwise,” she’s said.
But they did see her. They cast her in the movie, which became a critical success, and this encounter catapulted her into a successful career as a TV and movie star. All because she went outside for some fresh air one day.
Talk about lucky.
Is It Luck, Or Is It Good Time Management?
With St. Patrick’s Day around the corner, four-leaf shamrocks and “Luck of the Irish” signs are everywhere. They’re festive signs that winter might really be over and spring has finally arrived, but they could also get us thinking about the role of luck in our lives.
If you’re reading this, I think you would agree that you’ve already been lucky in some fundamental ways. If nothing else – you’ve been given the education necessary to read these words, and if you woke up this morning in a home with working faucets, you’re luckier than the 2.2 billion people worldwide who don’t have access to safe drinking water. And if you have a career that you love, you might feel lucky for that – especially if you see friends and family members struggling in jobs they don’t love or even like.
One of the things that’s interesting about the idea of luck is how differently people talk about and experience the concept of luck. For some of us, there are cultural elements at play. (For example, did you know that in Thailand, it’s believed to be bad luck to get a haircut on a Wednesday?) Your beliefs about luck could be influenced by your faith practices, your parents’ beliefs or your ideas around superstitions. You might not even believe that luck is real. Maybe you believe that everything that happens to you is predestined, or that good, “lucky” things happen in your life only when you become ready for them.
Oprah shared an interesting perspective on this (spoiler alert: I think it relates to time management!): “Luck is preparation meeting the moment of opportunity. There is no luck without you being prepared to handle that moment of opportunity. Every single thing that has ever happened in your life is preparing you for the moment that is to come.” -Oprah Winfrey
Are You Prepared to Be Lucky?
Is there a career-opening, life-changing moment ahead for you? One of the wonderful things about believing in luck is knowing that a big, lucky, Rosario-Dawson-on-her-front-stoop moment could happen to you at any time, with no advance warning.
Try this: Imagine you’re sitting in front of your own home, and someone walks by to offer you the career opportunity of your dreams. Take a few seconds to get really clear on what specific opportunity you’d love to have dropped into your lap today. Would you, as Oprah says, be prepared to handle that moment of opportunity? Would you have to turn it down because you’re too busy and overwhelmed to add one more thing to your plate? From a “how would I fit it in” real-life time management perspective, would an incredible career opportunity feel like a blessing or a curse right now?
If it’s the latter, your time management challenges could be keeping you from taking advantage of the opportunities that come your way. Take stock of them now to make sure you’re prepared to accept whatever unexpected possibilities open up to you. No matter your personal philosophies on luck, getting on top of your time management strategies right now prepares you for whatever comes next.
To that end, I want to make sure you know about my upcoming free webinar. Join me on Thursday, March 19th at 4pm ET / 1pm PT for 3 Keys to Getting Started on the Important Things. During this one-hour webinar, I’ll talk about the tools that will help you actually get more done and take control of your time. It’s a virtual webinar – the perfect distraction for anyone who’s stuck at home and craving productive ways to use time! Click here for more information and to register.