I finally understand “make your own luck”

I finally understand "make your own luck"

I finally understand “make your own luck”


I actually always thought it was one of those weird phrases, thrown around by dodgy people who bribed their way in and called that luck. Probably said by the same sort of people who think poor people deserve to be poor or “motivational” speakers who don’t know what a genuine disability in an area is like.


I was listening to the Story Grid podcast & an example was given that went something like:


Oh they were lucky. They got into an elevator with this business leader & ended up working together on this project.


I finally understand "make your own luck"


They broke down the “luck” involved in this:


They didn’t just hang out in any elevator lobby and hope to see a business leader and get lucky.


  • They had a business idea
  • They had worked hard on their business
  • They went to a conference to learn and network
  • They spoke up when in the elevator with the business leader


Very little of the outcome of that was luck.


It was the culmination of business ideas, hard work & a personal ability to speak up when others may not have.


“Luck” would have gotten you an autograph.


Luck would have meant you asking the business leader to solve all your business problems (which is NOT how you build a relationship).


They had solved their own problems.


Hard work meant they were able to converse as peers and not fans.


Did you ever understand “make your own luck” before? Any other examples of making your own luck that you can tell me about?



20 Replies to “I finally understand “make your own luck””

  1. I’ve always been referred to as a lucky person when it comes to opportunities thrown my way. The thing is a lot like what you’ve posted here, luck doesn’t have much to do with it. Same with the overnight success stories you here.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      Oh yes, overnight success is the biggest joke!

  2. I still remember my dad quoting some golfer when I was young. Apparently this golfer had been interviewed by someone who told him he’d played a lucky game or shot or something.

    And the golfer responded… “And you know, the more I practice the luckier I get.”


    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      It’s the “boring” things like practice that people don’t like to talk about, really.

  3. Great points. I remember someone saying too – not to wish people good luck in an exam / sport’s game etc because you have to work to earn the marks or train to be successful – luck has little to do with it.
    Luck is when you buy a ticket in the lottery or enter a game of chance.
    I’ve been lucky to win a few (like the Easter raffle)

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      Oooh now an Easter raffle really is luck. Delicious, chocolate luck! We could all use more that kind of luck 🙂

  4. See I think there are hardly any actual cases of luck – maybe lotto, a win that you weren’t expecting but when anyone says how lucky I am because of what I’m doing or an opportunity that I’m taking advantage of I’m quick to tell them it’s not luck, it’s good management and HARD work!

  5. I definitely believe you can make your own luck. I believe in positivity, taking advantage of all opportunities and being brave. Pity I don’t always do these things myself…

  6. I think “making my own luck” is about seizing opportunities and ideas as I see/notice them 🙂

    1. Oh and look at that – I’m back again for #teamIBOT today! But while I’m here, I will say that this post really stuck with me after I read it yesterday.

  7. I don’t believe in luck as such, I believe in hard work, a positive attitude and more hard work. I have made a great deal of luck in my life, all of which I worked very, very hard for!

  8. Yeah I think this phrase gets a bad rap. I do think that you are more likely to get out of life what you put in (it’s not an iron-clad guarantee, but nothing in life is). If you put yourself out there and approach life in a positive and proactive way it’s no surprise that opportunities make themselves available.

  9. I would agree that things just don’t fall into your lap. People can spend a life time waiting for that opportunity to come along and mostly they die that way. Waiting, without realising there is a lot of hard work and experience to be done, to get that opportunity to come your way and pay off.

  10. I don’t believe in good luck except perhaps when it comes to sometimes being fortunate enough to meet the right people at the right time or when you win something. In reality though, we need to recognise opportunities and act on them while they are there. We need to work to get to what we want. It isn’t going to miraculously happen for us!

  11. I think there’s always an element of luck/fate/kismet involved but it only takes you so far – the rest is up to you.

  12. I think there’s always an element of luck/good fortune/kismet at play, but there’s also a hell of a lot of hard yakka that helps place you in the right place at the right time.

  13. I agree with what Sam has said above. I do believe in luck, destiny, fate etc, but good old fashioned hard work is what will really get you where you need to be.

  14. Yes, I agree. Luck is only a very small part of things. There is usually so much hard work and years of failures behind so called luck. Unless it’s a lottery ticket!

  15. I agree with what you have said and making things happen. Even with the lotto ticket you had to put one in to be in the running!

  16. I always say the harder you work, the luckier you are! x

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