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Create Your Own Luck

“Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.”

The other day I was eating lunch with my kids. After lunch was over I gave them a “treat” from the drawer that we normally house goodies of all sorts. I happened to grab a couple of gold-wrapped chocolate coins. These coins were renditions of the JFK half-dollars. My youngest grabbed her coin and said, “heads or tails?” I quickly said “heads” while she flipped the coin in the air.

The coin landed on the floor. Tails. I said, “Well, we both lost.” My daughter quickly exclaimed, “I won daddy.” When I asked her how she won when the coin landed tails she replied to me, “I called both heads and tails.”


Essentially, my daughter had created her own luck. And I immediately thought, “This is excellent fodder for a blog post. So here we are.

The reason why I mention this is to raise the rhetorical question of how do we create our own luck? As the quote at the beginning of the post mentions, I believe luck is when preparation meets opportunity. In other words, it’s possible to create our own luck.

So how do we prepare to meet opportunity?

From a financial planning perspective, there are many ways. Of course, these can be applied to many other facets of life – not just financial.

One way is to create an emergency fund. With a properly funded emergency fund, when an emergency arises, we will have the financial resources to cover the ordeal. In other words, the preparation meets the opportunity. And we’re lucky to have had the money to cover it.

Another way is to save as much as we can for retirement. In preparing for 20, 30, or more years in retirement by saving now, when the opportunity to retire comes, we are prepared to meet it. Again, we are “lucky” to have a stable, financially rewarding retirement.

More examples include continuing to learn and educate ourselves (in preparation for the opportunity for career advancement, income increases, passing our knowledge to others), as well as why we carry auto, home, life, disability and other insurances (in the event of an unlucky situation, we are lucky to have the insurance to cover it).

I hope you see the point.

Finally, don’t be afraid to look for luck. I consider myself pretty good at finding four-leaf clovers. Many times people have asked me how I am able to find so many. My simple reply is that I look for them. So seek opportunities to be lucky.

Later that same day my kids asked if they could get a dog. Both their mother and I agree that now is not the right time. We mentioned all the responsibility that comes with a pet – training, feeding, walking, etc.

My daughters explained that they had done some “research” and found that puppies can be house trained using training pads, and cats can be trained to a litter box. And if we didn’t like the smell, we could put the box in the garage. If we were worried about shedding, we could get a dog that doesn’t shed. Clearly they had done their homework – they had prepared. They were creating their own luck.

My goal is to make the opportunity less available…?

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