When people think about luck, they think about things that happen by chance. They are things we have no control over. Yet luck is always something we want to improve. Luck is positive and it is something that people want. But when something great doesn’t happen every day, we start to think of ourselves as unlucky. We compare ourselves to others and use luck as an excuse saying things like “she is so lucky to go on that trip/get that promotion”, or doubting ourselves saying “that will never happen to me, I’m not that lucky”.
I think luck has a lot of different perspectives, and this is mine.
Do I think I am lucky? My husband asked me this question the other day. He had decided that he thought the answer to this question could tell you a lot about a person. On the surface I agree. A person’s answer can tell you if they are someone who believes everything in life comes to them through luck, or if they believe that hard work and determination is the driving force in their lives.
My interpretation of the question was a little different. My initial answer was “Yes, I consider myself to be lucky”. I went on to explain why; “I am lucky to have been born in Australia where I am safe, I have food and shelter and I never have to worry about that. I am lucky to grow up in a time where women have the opportunity to have an education, to work, and to choose their own future. My circumstance in which I was born into, that I have no control over, makes me lucky. This circumstance gives me the opportunity to work hard to achieve my goals”.
I am not sure this was the kind of answer he was expecting. I’m not sure it was the kind of answer I was expecting to give either to be honest. I had never really thought about it too much. To be really honest, when I really think about it, for a long time I actually considered myself unlucky. I went down this path of feeling others just had things, and even though I tried, I kept getting knocked down. I fell into the trap of comparing myself to others and to make myself feel better I just put it down to luck and tried to come to terms with it.
I don’t believe it is luck that got me my education, that got me my job, or that allows me to travel. They are things that I worked hard to achieve, often through sheer determination overcoming obstacles along the way.
What is lucky, is that I could go to university without having any money thanks to our government FEE-HELP program. Many countries around the world do not have access to affordable education and this is not something I want to ever take for granted.
As an Australian I also have access to public health care. This means that if I am sick or injured, I do not have to worry about not being able to afford treatment. Essential medicines are also subsidised making prescriptions to those who need it affordable. This is not the case for a lot of people even in developed countries, and not being able to afford health care is a scary reality to many people. Does that make me feel lucky that I was born in Australia? Hell yeah.
Being Australian also makes travel easier. While it is more expensive to travel to a lot of places due to our isolation, many countries do not require us to obtain visas. For those that do, our chance of being approved is greater than that of many other countries. By having an Australian passport I am given opportunities and a level of privilege when it comes to international travel, and I am truly grateful for this.
Circumstance can certainly make achieving our dreams easier. They do not automatically become achievable, but the situation we find ourselves born into can influence the outcome greatly. While I work hard to achieve my goals, my circumstance means that I am not restricted in my ability to actually reach them after the hard work is done.
That to me, makes me pretty lucky.
What is your view on luck? Do you consider yourself lucky?
*Photo in this post taken at Lake Moogerah 2017