what lucky people get right

Recently I came upon a study by Richard Wiseman that looked at luck from an interesting perspective.

OverflowingOptimism what lucky people get right
From Live Now By Chad Kouri

It surveyed people to find which of them considered themselves lucky—or unlucky. He then gave both the “lucky” and the “unlucky” a newspaper and asked them to count how many photographs were inside.

The unlucky people took two minutes to count all the photographs, whereas the lucky ones determined the number in a few seconds.

How!? Why?! Because the lucky people found a message on the second page that read, “Stop counting. There are 43 photographs in this newspaper.”

Why didn’t the unlucky people see it? Because they were focused on counting all the photographs that they missed the message.

Wiseman said:

“Unlucky people miss chance opportunities because they are too focused on looking for something else. They go to parties intent on finding their perfect partner, and so miss opportunities to make good friends. They look through the newspaper determined to find certain job advertisements and, as a result, miss other types of jobs. Lucky people are more relaxed and open, and therefore see what is there, rather than just what they are looking for.”

It reminds me of this selective attention test. Have you seen it? Try it out!


It’s funny that a link is made from being open to feeling lucky. Or not. I guess open, unattached folk see themselves as lucky. Because… why not?!

We all know how to take on this attitude. We’ve done it. Had glimpses. Like when we’re on holidays and we say yes to heading to the beach instead of the museum. We have felt the thrill of living a day, or an hour, without expectation …and seen how it leads to wonderful, unexpected things.

How to build this? How to foster it? How to tap into it? How to go into things with more expansive, niaive vision? I’m not sure. I’m someone who doesn’t see the gorilla in the Youtube thing. I do do this thing, tho, after meditation. I slump forward and surrender to the day. I kind of say, let’s see what comes my way. Gorillas or otherwise.

You got any (better) tricks?


Share this post