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Luck - Ed's journal
Well, I think by many standards, my life is a good one. I'm comfortable, content and progressing professionally. I'm doing things I enjoy, and growing wiser as I get older.

I'd like to share with you something that I've come to understand. I don't believe in 'luck'. I don't believe one person is implicitly 'luckier' than another. I don't believe in fair, either. Life isn't, and anyone who says otherwise is selling something.

But there is random. There are events - risks and opportunities - that will present themselves. Much like in a hand of poker - some days you're on an seven high, and other's you've been dealt a royal flush (actually, I've never been dealt a royal flush, but whatever :p). But over time, a good poker player will come out ahead - he'll have played his good hands well, and his bad hands to minimize losses. He's recognising what's there, and capitalising on the upswings and the downturns.

Every day, things happen. Some will be good, some will be bad. That's just the way it is. Some start from a better position, or worse position. Everyone in this country starts in a better position than a large proportion of the world.

But life isn't a state, as much as a process. If you're not changing, you're not living. If you cannot say that today I am a different - and hopefully better - person to yesterday, then you're wasting oxygen.

All these opportunities roll forwards. We have little scope for controlling what happens, but we do have the choice of how we deal with them. The real danger is in avoiding them. By keeping our heads down, and not wanting to 'rock the boat'. Fear of failure keeps people stuck where they are, going nowhere. But y'know, it's ok to fail. Everyone does, and everyone learns by doing so. It's very much the case that a failure teaches us more than a success does, if we let it. You learn more about the world, who you are, and how you relate to others. This is invaluable information, and is what you need to turn future opportunities out in a more positive fashion. It's called wisdom, and it's born of experience.

Don't turn away the experiences, because you're afraid to fail. Don't let opportunity pass you by unmarked. A risk is to be evaluated, considered, and appropriate action taken. Never to be ignored and avoided.

You get some opportunites, so does everyone else. They pass us by daily, and all too many go throughout life without even recognising them. They're not fair - you don't get the same hand as anyone else, so it can never be 'fair'. You might learn more from one thing, than another person can, simply because of the kind of person you are. You're not lucky, nor unlucky. You're just playing the hand you got dealt, in as good a fashion as you can. You'll get good ones, and bad ones. Some you can influence, some you can't.

But I'll tell you this - if you fold every hand in poker, because you're afraid to lose, then you'll go home the poor man, and will have learned nothing of how to play.


7 comments or Leave a comment
mister_jack From: mister_jack Date: October 10th, 2008 12:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
True that
angryangeltoo From: angryangeltoo Date: October 10th, 2008 01:31 pm (UTC) (Link)


Thank you I needed that :D
(Deleted comment)
sobrique From: sobrique Date: October 10th, 2008 06:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes. I will admit entirely that I've been very avoidant and risk adverse in my life.

I'm getting better, but I'm still a complete coward when it comes to phoning someone. I don't like initiating that contact.

But I'm starting to think more about why I'm being avoidant. You don't put your hand in a fire, because the probable outcomes are against you. But the same does not apply to walking up to someone and saying 'hello'. The spectrum of possibilities is wider, but the likely outcome is still positive.

I'm still thinking of the worst outcome, but I'm trying to moderate that tendancy, and accepting that ... well, sometimes worst cases happen, and when they do... well, they're rarely so extremely bad, and there's a positive learning experience there.

I spent all too long letting opportunities pass. Time to buck that trend.
mrph From: mrph Date: October 12th, 2008 08:35 pm (UTC) (Link)

elrohana From: elrohana Date: October 10th, 2008 06:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
If you avoid risk, then you'll never fall in love, never climb a tree, never sit near the edge of cliff and watch the sunset, never have a child, never drink too much, never try new food, never go abroad, never run a marathon - cos every one of these things could kill ya. There's only two of those I haven't tried, and only one I don't plan ever to. I'll leave you to wonder which is which.
sobrique From: sobrique Date: October 10th, 2008 09:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Some of these things are the scariest of all though. Some thing change you, and there's no going back. Having a child, or falling in love changes the rest of your life. And however it works out, there's no going back.

That's pretty terrifying, all things considered. But also perhaps one of the greatest things in life. One of the opportunities that you get to take as it comes, and make the best of.
jorune From: jorune Date: October 11th, 2008 07:49 am (UTC) (Link)
There is a tide in the affairs of men.
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.

Julius Caesar Act 4, scene 3, 218–224

Edited at 2008-10-11 07:50 am (UTC)
7 comments or Leave a comment