I have been playing a relatively new sport called pickle ball. It has similar qualities to tennis, racket ball and Ping-Pong. I have joined a new group of people who, like me, have given up some of our more active sports to find this one that is less strenuous on the knees and back.
There is a very sweet lady that plays several times a week who always proclaims after a perfect over head shot to the corner of the court, “Oh that was just lucky.” I have a good friend who was recently offered a fabulous opportunity to write a technical book in the 6th decade of her life. Her constant mantra is, “How did I get so lucky?” Really? She has worked her butt off learning, teaching and gaining more knowledge in her field than almost everyone she knows. Luck? I don’t think so!
And then there is my grandson who has a beautiful three-point swish shot on the basketball court. I challenge anyone to call his shots lucky as he has been practicing his skills on the court at almost every opportunity throughout the past seven years.
There is no question that it seems as if others get the “jump ball” while we struggle. I am not disputing that luck can be a factor in some circumstances. There are people who have connections that elude some of us. Sometimes it is simply being in the right place at the right time. However, there is no question that practicing, gaining knowledge and networking works its magic.
So why then do we call our hard work and opportunities luck? I worked for a wise man many decades ago who liked to say, “Luck is opportunity meeting preparedness.” Consider what this means.
A close friend has a daughter who has more talent than many singers who have been at it as long as she. Does she have frustrations? Are there times she feels life just isn’t fair? Absolutely! However, she continues to practice her craft and live her passion; she does not give up.
Are books flying off the shelves by writers with the same or less talent than mine? Definitely! Are there authors with more talent who can’t get a break? No question! The truth is that sometimes it isn’t logical why some people are successful and some are not. Who is to say what success means? We may have different definitions. For some, success can be the effort.
The key is to practice your craft and live your passion while finding joy in what you do. By all means, don’t compromise your dreams. Do the things that give you pleasure along with what is necessary to pay for your lifestyle.
Please don’t compare yourself to others. You are uniquely you. The next time you are tempted to say someone is lucky, think about how much time and work they have invested to be at the right place at the right time.
Now go take on the day!!!
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