“A great attitude does much more than turn on the lights in our worlds; it seems to magically connect us to all sorts of serendipitous opportunities that were somehow absent before the change.”  — Earl Nightingale 

It’s almost St. Patrick’s Day – time to celebrate the “Luck of the Irish”! Do you know where your personal leprechaun is?  Or your own lucky four-leaf clover?  How about your pot o’ gold at the end of the rainbow?   

I’ve written extensively in past blogs about Dr. Richard Wiseman’s study of the psychological causes behind “good luck’ and “bad luck.” (See the archives for Learn to Be Lucky and Learn to Be Lucky Part II).  In studying hundreds of people who believed themselves to be either inherently “lucky” or “unlucky,” Dr. Wiseman discovered that the overriding differentiating characteristics of the two groups are all about ATTITUDE

1)     LUCKY people tend to see the positive side of any ill fortune.  They imagine how things could have been worse and express gratitude for what they have and how their life is going.  As Hans Selye says, “Adopting the right attitude can convert a negative stress into a positive one.”

2)     UNLUCKY people are generally much more tense than lucky people, and research has shown that anxiety disrupts one’s ability to notice the unexpected.  Thus, unlucky people miss the “serendipitous opportunities” that are all around them because they are too focused on their worries and fears.  Sir John Lubbock states, “What we see depends mainly on what we look for.” 

The bottom line about “luck,” therefore, is that we largely make our own.  We certainly can’t control everything that life throws at us, but we can control completely how we react to it.  And that alone is POWER beyond what you may imagine. 

Your attitude – made up of the thoughts, emotions and energetic vibration that you choose to embody – constitutes a magnetic force that attracts the exact opportunities, resources and people you need to help you in any given situation.  That’s the Law of Attraction in action: “Energy attracts like energy.”  You are constantly drawing things to you that are a match for the energetic vibration of your attitude. 

When faced with any problem in life, it is not your job to know how to solve it. The Universe already has the “how” all figured out. All you have to do is work on developing an attitude of gratitude, just like those “lucky” people who can find the GOOD in any situation.  And you must also keep your mind open to the opportunities surrounding you that the “unlucky” people miss when preoccupied with worry, anxiety or self-pity. 

This quote by Tom Blandi sums it up perfectly: “Our attitudes control our lives.  Attitudes are a secret power working twenty-four hours a day, for good or bad.  It is of paramount importance that we know how to harness and control this great force.”   

So how do you “harness and control” this amazing force you have inside you that has a huge influence on how any challenging situation in your life turns out? 

Many studies have shown that people who believe in a Higher Power are better able to remain calm in troubling times, heal faster from illness, and maintain a belief that things will eventually improve for them than people who believe they must rely solely on their own strength and wits.  So strengthening your BELIEF in a force for good outside of your own Ego is a good place to start. 

A very powerful tool for creating a positive attitude that I always recommend to my Practical Prosperity Coaching ™ clients is keeping a daily Gratitude Journal, where they list 5-10 things that they are grateful for at the very moment they are writing it.  I make my list of 10 things I’m thankful for each morning, and nothing gets me into a positive frame of mind faster than focusing on the GOOD that’s already present in my life.  

Recently, for example, I found myself annoyed at the lower water pressure and smaller shower stall in our new “downsized” house.  I was tempted to pity myself for no longer being able to enjoy the more luxurious shower I once took for granted. Then I remembered the earthquake victims in Haiti and Chile who are living in tents (if they are lucky).  I know for certain that they would be very grateful for a shower, no matter how low the water pressure!  That morning, “a daily hot shower” went into my Gratitude Journal.  

I also have to consciously guard my thoughts and to release worry whenever I find my mind visualizing a possible negative outcome for some situation in my life.  The best way I know to immediately cease worrying about circumstances I cannot do anything to solve at the moment is to say aloud my favorite affirmation: 

“I claim, accept and expect THE BEST from myself and others 100% of the time.”   

These words remind me that by EXPECTING THE BEST outcome in a situation, I am consciously “harnessing and controlling” the “great force” of my own attitude. I know that holding an expectation of GOOD will open my mind up to receive all the serendipitous opportunities, resources and people that are available to me right now – that are part of the “how” that the Universe offers me to solve my problem. 

Finally, as any “lucky” person knows, whatever challenge you are facing at this moment, you must always remember that “This, too, shall pass.”  Recalling some past challenge you once thought of as HUGE and recognizing how inconsequential it now seems in the big picture of your life will give you a comforting perspective on your current problems.  

My personal favorite memory for gaining perspective on my challenges is the Senior Comprehensive Exam I had to pass in order to graduate from the University of California with a degree in English Literature.  It was a year-long survey course, involving a review of virtually ALL of English literature from Beowulf to James Baldwin that we supposedly had been exposed to in 15 years of schooling.  Senior English majors were warned that we could be asked to answer essay questions about ANY of over 100 books on the reading list during the three big exams.  

I remember sitting in my car after the first class, looking at the pages-long reading list, much of which I had never before studied, and bursting into tears. I was absolutely sure that I would fail the course, never graduate, never become an English lit teacher as I had always planned, and my life would be ruined forever.  I prayed daily and fervently throughout that year to calm myself down enough to attend the weekly review class and read as many books the list as I possibly could. 

At the end of the year, I’d accumulated two A’s and a B+ on the three comprehensive exams.  The year after I graduated, the University of California had received so much flack that the Senior Comprehensive Exam was dropped from the English curriculum!  

After graduation, I went on to take my teacher training and taught one year of high school English before deciding that career definitely was not for me.  All that angst for nothing!  This is the perfect memory to revisit whenever I find myself catastrophizing about some seemingly insurmountable problem of the moment because I now know that it, too, shall definitely pass! 

I hope your St. Paddy’s Day is a LUCKY one!  Enjoy a green bagel or a green beer and keep your eyes peeled for the pot o’ gold that you just KNOW is somewhere under your nose right now – you just haven’t noticed it yet! 

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Reach your Goals at a GREAT Discount!

If you missed the four-week Tele-class I co-taught with Lifestyle and Design Coach Sue Koch in February, it’s not too late!  Go to this link, and listen to the streaming audio near the bottom of the page: http://myjanuaryjumpstart.com.  On this F.R.E.E. call, we share with you the KEY secrets about exactly what it take to set and fulfill your biggest, juiciest goals – and how to avoid the pitfalls that send so many people into “resolution resignation” by this time of year. 

We hope that once you hear this very valuable information about how to set High Quality Goals for your life, you will want to actually SET and FULFILL them in 2010!  

Our four-session tele-seminar, Resolution Breakthrough: Designing Your Fresh Start for 2010, won’t be repeated LIVE again until June.  But you don’t have to wait until then to begin working on your Big Juicy Goals because the course is now available at 50% off the “live” tuition fee as a home-study course that you can go through at your own pace, listening to the same audios on your computer that we recorded during the live calls and using all the great tools we developed to help you create goals you are PASSIONATE about and which you can really ATTAIN. 

 The self-study version even includes ONE HOUR of PRIVATE COACHING by phone with either Sue or me (a $150 Value!) at NO ADDITIONAL CHARGE, to make sure you are on-track to meeting your biggest goals for this year and beyond. 

In fact, the course is GUARANTEED to do just that! If you listen to all four course sessions, follow all the guidelines and you still aren’t in action on your #1 Big Goal for 2010 by the end of the self-study course, we will refund your money! So what have you got to lose? 

Go to the F.R.E.E. call NOW at http://myjanuaryjumpstart.com and learn how to beat resolution resignation once and for all. If you like what you hear, simply go to the bottom of the same page and follow the instructions for registering for the Fresh Start 2010 Self-Study course! 

Your questions and comments are always welcome!  Please contact me at: caroll@practicalprosperitycoach.com