Luckily, I caught Richard Wiseman in a radio interview late one night on my way home from the airport. When I got home, I immediately looked him up on the Internet and ordered his book. Wiseman is Professor of the Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire in the United Kingdom. He’s been extensively studying luck over a number of years by interviewing and running experiments with very lucky people who seem to lead charmed lives and very unlucky people who seem to have their own black cloud following them around.

His findings are further proof that we make choices to wallow in and create our own bad luck, or lead ourselves toward attracting “lucky” breaks in our lives.

In his book The Luck Factor: Change Your Luck and Change Your Life, Wiseman outlines four principles he has found define lucky people. Through his “luck school,” he’s retrained up to 80 percent of the unlucky to reverse their fortunes and attract good luck. His four principles involve key elements of leading:

  • engage others in conversations and social interaction;
  • listen to your intuition and trust hunches;
  • develop positive expectations about the future; and
  • strengthen resilience and persistence to eventually turn bad luck into good.

These few excerpts of his luck research further illustrate the magnetic power of the energy force fields we choose in framing, explaining, and acting on the good and bad events in our lives:

  • “My research revealed that the special kind of expectations held by lucky and unlucky people had a huge impact on their lives. The unique way that lucky people thought about their future was responsible for them being more effective than most when it came to achieving their dreams and ambitions. Likewise, the unlucky expectations held by unlucky people resulted in them being especially ineffectual at getting what they wanted from life.”
  • “Lucky people see any bad luck in their lives as being very short lived. They simply shrug it off and don’t let it affect their expectations about the future. Unlucky people are convinced that any good luck in their lives will only last for a short period of time, and will quickly be followed by their regular dose of bad luck.”
  • “Luck was not a magical ability or a gift from the gods. Instead, it was a state of mind: a way of thinking and behaving. People are not born lucky or unlucky, but create much of their own good and bad luck through their thoughts, feelings and actions.”

A funny thing about luck: the harder we work the more we seem to have of it.