If you are lucky enough to find a way of life you love,
you have to find the courage to live it. – John Irving
Your luck, your life, is in your own control. You have the power to make things happen and build yourself a happier and better life! You can make your own luck happen.
Six years ago, I was making $13,000 per year in a miserable job. The house I had owned with my husband was foreclosed and our marriage was over. I moved with the children to a low income apartment, where it was not safe enough to allow them to go outside to play unless I was outside with them, because of the crime there.
Today I have a job I love! I’d like to say my income has tripled, but it’s actually a little bit shy of that. The kids and I live in a cute little rental house situated among very nice homes in a wonderful, very safe neighborhood.
Our lives are completely different from six years ago. But the positive changes did not happen overnight.
I made a goal to get out of those apartments and improve our lives. Then I made a plan to make it happen. And I took it one step at a time, slowly but surely inching my way to the goal. I made my own luck, and we moved out of there in under two years.
How to Be Lucky in Everything and Get What You Want
Develop a Plan
I had to land a better job that paid more if I wanted to rent a better and safer place, but I knew I didn’t have the job skills necessary.
So I started taking positive steps forward. I took any and every free course I could. I applied for a grant through our community college to improve my computer skills, and it cost me nothing. I also took several computer oriented classes through the public library, and I’d just take the kids with me and let them hang out and read, color, or work puzzles.
Both the college and the library worked around my schedule so I could keep my old job in the meantime. I took classes on Saturdays or after work with my kids. You may be surprised to find out what the community college offers where you live.
Research what is available in your area. “Google is your best friend!” You can even find free online courses through Khan Academy, Coursera, and many other programs.
Don’t forget to record your classes/courses under Education on your resume!
Anyone can improve their lives and the lives of their families. If they want it bad enough.If they are willing to work hard enough!
Wishing for a better life won’t get you anywhere. You have to work hard for what you want. And you CAN make it happen!
I checked job listings obsessively. I applied for everything I thought I qualified for, even if I wasn’t sure about a job listing. The more practice I got interviewing, the more relaxed I became with experience.
Interviewers say that most job candidates don’t remember to smile. Many don’t even make good eye contact. The more experienced and relaxed you are, the better your interviews will go. If you are friendly and pleasant, that alone will vastly increase your chance for hire.
I can honestly say that every job I’ve landed has been because the interviewer liked me, not because I was more qualified than someone else. Managers want team members who can get along with others and are pleasant to be around and who are dependable. If they perceive you to have those qualifications, they will be more willing to train you for the position than hire someone more qualified who they perceive might be more difficult to work with every day.
So pretend the interviewer is your friend and their office is a coffee shop. That means leaning in to talk, not slouching. It means eye contact and being pleasant. Smile and be friendly and act like you like the interviewer. (She’s your pretend friend, remember?)
Developing a Plan for What You Want Begins the Process for Getting There
Let’s say you aren’t looking for a better job. What you want is to pursue your dream of living in the mountains.
Brainstorm. How can you make it happen? Talk to friends. Network. If people don’t know you’re looking for a different opportunity, they won’t be able to help you find it.
Talk about your goal on Facebook. Ask if anyone they know has a cabin in the mountains or has friends in Tennessee or wherever you’re interested. Make new virtual friends through social media in your targeted community, and Facebook or Skype with them. You would have a network of people to welcome you when you move there!
Remember Google is your friend, too. Research mountain towns, browse job listings, read their local papers, look at available rentals or homes for sale. Develop your plan. You can make it happen!
Luck is a dividend of sweat. The more you sweat, the luckier you get. – Ray Kroc
Once you start moving forward with your plan, keep working harder! When I acquired the skills I needed and then got a better job, it increased my salary over 60% in the first year alone. But it was still a far cry from being able to comfortably support myself and two children, so I didn’t stop there.
Never stop growing and learning and improving yourself. That’s how you continue to improve your life and your circumstances!
I became a notary public online. I came in early every day, but I never left work early. I created a reputation for myself of being dependable and hard-working. I offered to help anyone else I noticed whose work load was too great. That also helped me gain invaluable new skills, and it made me indispensible as an employee.
It’s funny that most people don’t think about the correlation between kindness and career success! But it’s true that everything you do for someone else out of compassion or kindness will come back to you. I got my first pay increase in just a few months, and I got a job promotion to a better position in less than a year.
Patience, Faith and Positivity
Most people give up on their goals and their dreams because they become discouraged. Understand from the beginning that it will be a very slow process! You CAN achieve your goals, but patience and faith are requirements for success. Keep the faith and keep a positive attitude.
My life has changed dramatically for the better! But it seemed to be happening in slow motion. Many times after a negative event, like issues with car repairs, it felt like I was moving backward instead of forward. It can feel very disheartening. But don’t give up! Persistence is key! Keep going over your plan, revise it when necessary, and keep plodding along. YOU CAN DO IT! You will make your own luck and reach your goal!
My life is still changing, and I am still working hard and still learning, growing and trying to improve myself, my life, and the lives of my children. How about you?
Where do you want to be in life? What is one small step you could take today to begin your journey to arrive there?
Photo by Anna S.
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