7 Things To Do When You Feel Unlucky in Life
Yesterday was Friday the 13th. A lot of people believe that day to be unlucky. It’s not uncommon to hear stories of cancelled flights and doctor’s appointments. The fearful will alter their daily routines in an attempt to avoid situations that have the potential to turn sour. They don’t want to be in an unlucky situation.
Some feel unlucky depending on what day is on the calendar. Others feel unlucky in life in general.
I was talking to a friend about a year ago. We had recently met due to our blogging commonality. We lived in the same city so we met for happy hour. We had more in common than blogging. We were both successful women in our thirties. We owned our houses. We’ve traveled. We both have a dog. And we’re both single.
“I think my love life has been cursed,” I said as we were bonding over frozen margaritas.
“Don’t say that!” she answered.
Yet, truthfully, if there’s an area of my life where I feel the most unluckiest it’s my love life. I’ve often wondered if I took a wrong turn. Am I being punished for past sins? Did I give up prematurely on someone who wasn’t so bad?
Whether it’s love or money, health or appearance you may feel unlucky too. You may feel life dealt you a bad hand and there’s nothing you can do about it. The moment you start to believe that life has treated you unfairly and this is just the hands you’ve been dealt is the moment you lose your power. Your beliefs become a self fulling prophesy.
“If you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Mary Kay Ash
If you feel unlucky you have to get out of your head and into action. That’s the only way your “luck” will turnaround. Here are 7 things to do when you feel unlucky:
“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” – Seneca
If you believe in God the first thing to do in any situation is to pray. God changes situations and people. Isaiah 43:19 says, “Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” God is able and willing to do a new thing in your life.
Sometimes we think we have to do the right thing in our own strength. Yet at times we don’t know what the right thing is. We don’t have crystal balls that allow us to see into the future so we make the best decisions we can and God steps in when we’re off track. I wrote about this on a Christian Faith blog I share with my family, Hope, Faith, and Prayer.com. In Genesis, God told Lot to get his family out of Sodom, because God was going to destroy the city. Yet, Lot dragged his feet. He was procrastinating. And still God was so merciful to him. God dragged Lot and his family out of Sodom to safety.
If you don’t know what to do to change your situation, simply pray. Ask for guidance, ideas, and courage to do the thing God tells you to do.
“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” – James 5:16
Prayer can help you change your luck by:
- Making your request known to God. Ask and you shall receive.
- Hearing God’s own will for your life.
- Getting into agreement with God’s will for your life.
- Receiving direction from God.
- Inviting God into your situation.
- Relinquishing control to God which in turns decreases stress and creates more peace.
2. Be Intentional About Change
What areas do you feel unlucky? Is it your love life? Your finances? Whatever it is you have to be intentional about changing the situation. That may mean joining online dating sites or going out more. It could mean working toward a promotion or career change. The worse thing you can do is nothing. Things rarely change on their own. Of course, it would be nice if you bumped into the love of your life while pumping gas. But if that’s not happening it’s time to try something different.
Look for new opportunities. If you’ve been feeling unlucky in life there’s also a good chance that you have been doing the same thing for a while. If you can’t find any new opportunities create them for yourself. We often believe that opportunities are spontaneous events that we come across. That’s rarely the case. Opportunities are things we create when we want to change our luck. Read more about how to find and fund your own opportunities.
“Your life doesn’t get better by chance. It gets better by change.” – Jim Rohn
If you think life has treated you unfairly and has favored others it could be that they have something inside of them that you don’t have. Nobody is born with all the answers and all the gifts. We grow throughout our lifetimes. We gain new knowledge. We practice. We enhance our skillsets. We evolve our personality traits – things life confidence, discipline, and courage. I believe luck favors those who grow. Could it be that the people you feel are luckier than you have more drive and grit than you? Is it possible they focus more on growing and improving than you?
If you want to change your luck you have to grow in some capacity. Would you say that Michael Jordan is a lucky man? He is arguably one of the best basketball players of our time. He played in the NBA and the MLB. He’s worth $1.2 billion. He’s sold millions of sneakers. Earned 6 championship rings. The man has accomplished a lot. Yet, this lucky man didn’t originally make the varsity basketball team at his high school. Luck wasn’t on his side.
“Whenever I was working out and got tired and ﬁgured I ought to stop, I’d close my eyes and see that list in the locker room without my name on it,” Jordan would explain. “That usually got me going again.”
Michael Jordan didn’t dwell on his misfortune. He practiced. He grew. He got better (and taller). And now he’s one of the “luckiest” men in sports.
Be intentional about change and be intentional about growing.
Ways to grow:
- Read a book (check out From Caterpillar to Butterfly: Transform the Life You Have into the Life You Love)
- Listen to an audiobook
- Try something new
- Learn something new
- Attend a live event (check out Tony Robbins, Mary Morrissey, Lisa Nichols, or Jack Canfield to name a few)
- Listen to a podcast (check out From Caterpillars to Butterflies Personal Growth podcast and other personal growth podcasts)
- Go on a mission trip
- Practice discipline
- Work with a life coach
- Mentor someone else
- Find a mentor
3. Expose Yourself to New People
You may have heard it said before that you are the sum of the five people you hang around the most. If you feel unlucky or that life is not where you want it to be there’s a good chance that the people you hang around are in the same boat. Some of them might not even mind being in the boat. But if you want something more for your life you’ve got to get around new people. This doesn’t mean to just ditch your family and friends. It does mean to get around people who are doing what you want to be doing.
“New friends are like new adventures. You never now what life lessons they will teach you.” – Unknown
This is especially true if you have a difficult time being the odd man out. If you start to express interest in new things and goals and no one in your immediate circle cares will that deter you? You will fall back to old habits? We have a strong need to belong. If something like a new goal for your life threatens your sense of belonging you may be reluctant to follow through. If this is true for you you definitely need to forge relationships with like minded people. Nowadays it’s very easy to expose yourself to new people. There’s sites like Meetup.com where you can find a tribe of people who have similar interests and similar goals as you.
“The great thing about new friends is that they bring new energy to your soul.” – Shanna Rodriquez
If you do what you’ve always done around the same people that you’re always around you stay where you’ve always been. People feel unlucky when their situations haven’t change in a significant amount of time. Think about it, if you got a promotion every year you wouldn’t feel unlucky would you? If you took an exotic vacation every six months you wouldn’t feel unlucky. A big part of the reason you feel unlucky is because you’ve been doing the same things day in and day out with the same people. Get around new people so you can start to do new things.
The other thing that getting around new people does for you is it can introduce you to new ideas and concepts. You could very well come across someone that has accomplished something in their life that you’d like to accomplish as well. Seeing someone go from where you are to where you want to be is inspiring. You also have the opportunity to observe first hand how they’ve accomplished whatever it is. Do they have certain habits? Do they have a specific mindset?
4. Change Your Mindset
Speaking of mindset your mindset will either be your biggest friend or your biggest foe. What you don’t believe is possible will not be possible for you. You won’t even try. If you think you are unlucky you will count all the ways you are unlucky and skip over all the areas of your life that are beautiful. If you want to be lucky it starts in your head.
For starters, what are some good things in your life right now? Don’t say you have none. I can name a few:
- You are alive
- You have eyesight
- You can read
- You have access to a mobile device or computer
- You have access to the internet
As someone who has traveled the world I know some of the things like internet and computers that we in the US take for granted are a luxury for many others. There are people who have left this earth at a younger age than you. They didn’t get to experience as much. They didn’t get to meet as many people. They didn’t get to accomplish all their dreams for time wasn’t on their side. But you still have a chance to achieve your dreams. You don’t have to die with your dreams still inside of you.
Death or should I say Life is one of the things that keeps me going. I’m still here. How can I just mosey on by? I don’t want to. I want to give it all I’ve got. I want to make it to the end of life knowing that whatever I “missed out on” wasn’t because I gave up. I’m not giving up.
And you shouldn’t either.
“My greatest challenge has been to change the mindset of people. Mindsets play strange tricks on us. We see the way our minds have instructed our eyes to see.” – Muhammad Yunus
People give up in their minds before they give up in their actions. You’ve got to tame your thoughts. You have to pull them into submission. You don’t submit to your thoughts. Your thoughts submit to you. As long as you think you’re unlucky or stuck it will be hard to turn your life around.
Start focusing on the areas of your life where you feel gratitude. If you feel gratitude for what you do have and where are at this point in your life you won’t be miserable, stressed, and depressed all the time. When you don’t feel good it’s hard to accomplish good things. When people don’t feel good they tend to want to drown out the feelings of despair with alcohol, drugs, sex, and excessive television. These behaviors keep you from fully being present and active which in turn makes you unlucky.
Read my thoughts on smoking weed and other behaviors that take you “away”.
You can’t constantly go away (mentally) and expect to create a lucky life. Lucky people are present and intentional.
5. Take a Gamble
You may feel unlucky in life because you’ve never taken a gamble. How can win if you don’t bet? Now I’m not telling to jump on the next thing smoking to Vegas or the corner gas station to buy a lottery ticket. I’m saying that if you’ve been playing the game of life a little too on the safe you probably will not have any luck. Perhaps it’s not that you’re unlucky it’s just that you’re not lucky. In words, “bad” things aren’t happening to you. It’s just that nothing good is happening for you.
For example, my love life isn’t bad. I don’t have an abusive husband or unfaithful boyfriend. I just have a non-existent love life. Apart of that is due to the fact that I haven’t taken many risks. I take risks in a lot of other areas such as finances and career. I’ve invested in real estate and wrote a self help book for women. Both risky things. But I’m not necessarily risky in dating. I don’t ask men out or make the first move. (Note to self: Work on that.)
You might be unlucky because you’re too risk averse. Learn to take calculated gambles.
- Make the first move
- Ask that man/woman out
- Apply for the job
- Write the book
- Start the business (on the side – not saying quit your day job)
- Move cities
- Buy the house
- End the relationship
- Have the child
- Adopt a child
- Take the trip
- Go back to school
- Apply for the loan
“Take every risk. Drop every fear.” – Unknown
These things feel risky because there’s no guarantee of a return. You risk losing money. You risk looking and feeling like a failure. You risk relationships and peace of mind. But not taking a gamble is risky as well. It just has the potential to cost you different things. You risk:
- Feeling like a failure your whole life
- Never achieving anything worthwhile
- Spending a lifetime doing things you don’t enjoy
- Living beneath your potential
- Missing your purpose
- Missing out on love
- Living with regret
“Take risks: If you win you’ll be happy. If you lose you’ll be wise.” – Unknown
There’s risks anyway you look at it. Life is risky. Period. What type of risk are you willing to accept? The risk associated with giving it your all, exploring your interests, and creating good luck? Or the risk associated with staying the same and never taking a chance on anything or anyone?
6. Stick With It
I have a love hate relationship with online dating. I sign up for a service or download an app and then one too many creeps later I delete it. Chances are I could have meet a nice guy if I didn’t get deterred by all the frogs I didn’t want to kiss. But I’ve given up more times than I can count. Honestly, sometimes meeting people feels more like a burden and a distraction. I could be blogging or working on my next book. I know I have to find the right balance if I want to find the right man.
“Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game one foot from a winning touchdown.” – Ross Perot
If you’re doing what you know to do to change your luck stick with it until you are successful or until you identify a better approach. It’s like exercising. If you workout for two weeks and then quit for two months before starting up again you probably won’t make much headway. Stay in the game long enough to score a point.
You probably feel unlucky because you’ve tried many, many times and you haven’t accomplished the goal. Things are not necessarily going to happen for you fast, but they will happen if you don’t give up. It doesn’t matter how many times the answer has been no if you still have the dream in your heart you should keep striving to achieve it. Many famous people are where they are today because they didn’t take no for an answer. Jack Canfield’s Chicken Soup for the Soul was turned down 144 times. Now it’s one of the bestselling book series of all time.
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
7. Feed on Something Productive
Some people feel unlucky in life because it feeds them. They get attention and sympathy. It really goes back to not doing or being apart of something worthwhile. I’d say it’s a drug of choice for some similar to smoking weed or sex. It’s actually another way of going “away”. If you’re walking around all the time talking about how unlucky you are it is probably because it satisfies something in you. But it’s not a healthy satisfaction. It’s like eating cake for dinner will satisfy your hunger but it’s not the healthiest choice.
Even if the worst possible thing in the world happened to you if you’re still alive you have two choices. The choice to crumble and be left to exist as a poor, unlucky soul or the choice to rise above it. You don’t have to be unlucky. You choose to be. And if you’ve chosen to be unlucky it is because it feeds you.
“How unlucky I am that this should happen to me. But not at all. Perhaps, say how lucky I am that I am not broken by what has happened, and I am not afraid of what is about to happen. For the same blow might have stricken anyone, but not many would have absorbed it without capitulation and complaint.” – Marcus Aurelius
One of the things that creates “luck” the most is throwing yourself into something that is meaningful. It is being absorbed in something that gives you purpose and fulfillment. When you are apart of something that makes you feel alive it’s very hard to walk around feeling as though life cheated you. It’s hard to feel unlucky.
If you feel unlucky in life find something productive, purposeful and fulfilling to dedicate yourself to. Feed on something that is positive and empowering. Don’t feed off of sympathy and attention. Feed off of things that truly add value to your life and the life of others.
“Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass… It’s about learning how to dance in the rain.” – Vivian Greene
I said that my love life sucks (and it does – for now) but there are so many other things that give me joy and satisfaction. These are things that I have created. This blog gives me fulfillment. Writing a book gives me pride. Traveling gives me joy. My relationship with God gives me purpose. These are all things that I get to control. It’s not my husband (because I don’t have one). It’s not my boss. It’s not my mom. It’s not my kid. I’m choosing everyday what I will feed on and I don’t choose to feed on what’s going wrong or what I don’t have.
I’m feeding off of the beautiful parts of my life. And for that, I think I’m pretty lucky.