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Is Dwight just lucky?

“But you’re lucky, Dwight.”


I often hear this refrain from my friends and clients, as they compare their lives negatively to mine or as they argue for their own limitations and circumstances they say prevent them from living the life they truly want.

I've been lucky

I can point to many ways that I have been lucky.

  • I won the mother lottery. 

  • I've had many advantages because I was born in the United States.

  • A chance encounter got me into a career I loved when I was twenty-two years old.

  • Some random friend introduced me to Ayn Rand who introduced me to Nathaniel Branden whose workshop transformed my life in just one day in my early thirties.

  • A piece of junk mail in 1979 turned me onto Neuro-Linguistic Programming and Arizona.

  • An accidental meeting with a Japanese woman in Arizona resulted in my great life in Asia for the last 22 years (as of 2022).

This list could go on and on.

I could create an equally long list, if I put my mind to it, of how I have been unlucky.

What others have said about luck

"Luck is believing you're lucky."

-Tennessee Williams

"Diligence is the mother of good luck."

-Benjamin Franklin

"Success is simply a matter of luck. Ask any failure."

-Earl Wilson

"Luck is the residue of design."

-Branch Rickey

"I've found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often."

-Brian Tracy

Why I think I've been so "lucky"

In large measure, especially since my 30s, I have had the life that I have wanted.


In the past several decades my life has turned into an absolute bonanza, nurtured by the clarity I have developed regarding the power and importance of choosing courage.


Certainly, I have used my intelligence in choosing courage (courage is not foolhardiness), but, I say that courage has played the deciding role in creating the life that I want.


Maybe I should tell those friends and clients about the time that...

  • I chose courage to quit college, risking my parents’ disapproval because I could not see its relevance to the rest of my life...and college was boring.

  • At the age of 22, I chose courage to borrow $200 from my parents and take the bus to New York City, not knowing a single person there, but intending to build my life there.

  • At the age of 24, after two years of working for IBM and having a secure future with them, I chose courage to quit IBM and start working for myself as a freelance computer programmer, not having a single client before I quit.

  • I chose courage to take dancing lessons, even when I felt awkward and self-conscious.

  • I chose courage to participate in some human potential workshops that forced me to look deeply and sometimes uncomfortably into myself.

  • I chose courage to move, within two weeks of thinking of it, from New York City, after living there for 14 years, to Tempe, Arizona, driving a UHaul van for 2,600 miles by myself over five days.

  • I chose courage to walk into a computer department without an appointment, and said to the manager, “You should give me some work,” resulting in a six-month contract with the first company I approached in Arizona.

  • I chose courage to ask my (then future) wife to marry me.

  • I chose courage to change careers, after 20 years as a computer software consultant to my new career as a life coach, which I’ve now enjoyed for 35 years!

  • I chose courage many thousands of times to call strangers on the telephone to offer them a gift coaching session, thereby making my business viable and deeply satisfying. (See the illustration above)

  • I chose courage, perhaps the biggest choice of courage in my life because it confronted my identity of being a "good guy" to initiate a divorce with my (now former) wife.

  • Maybe I should tell them about the times that I chose the courage to ask for help when I really needed it.

  • I chose courage to feel my pain and fear completely, crying more in a month than I had cried in all my life before when my deepest love chose to end our romance.

  • I chose courage to plan and implement a 40-day odyssey through Japan in 1997, living with 18 different home-stay families in 18 different cities from Yokohama to Nagasaki.

  • I chose courage to move from Arizona, after living there for 18 years, to Hermosa Beach, California.

  • I chose courage to move from California to Tokyo, Japan, after 55 years of living in the USA, relocating myself and my business into a totally new country and culture.

  • I chose courage to ask Dawn, a Chinese student at Tokyo University, for directions. She ended up becoming one of my best friends ever and is responsible for my living in China now.

  • I chose courage to move from Tokyo, Japan to Shanghai, China.

  • I chose courage to move from Shanghai, after living there nine years, to Kunming China, my dream city for over twelve years now.

  • I chose courage to honor my own deepest desires, even when others disapproved or considered me selfish.

  • I chose the courage that resulted in my knowing him or her (my friend or client) right now!

  • The reason that many things are so easy for me now is that I was willing to choose courage when choosing courage was still difficult for me.


The lucky don't rely on luck

How, indeed, can they really understand that it was not luck that has given me the incredible life that I have, but the courage that chose and I continue to choose?


How, indeed, can they really understand that they have the power of choosing courage in their life just as I do in mine?


Do you fully realize the power that choosing courage can have on your life?


Do you know that it is never too late to begin choosing courage now.

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