The famous American writer Dorothy Parker once said, “I hate writing. I like having written.”
I know many people who are like that about their life and work. They love to fantasize about what life will be like when they ‘make it’, but they like to skip over the part that reads – hard work.
Like the young man I met a few days back who has spent the past ten years of his life destroying his body with alcohol, excessive food, and a sedentary lifestyle…but wanted to know a quick way to get fit, lean and healthy in just the next six months!
He, probably, expects to get ‘lucky’ in his life by getting whatever he wants without the hard work to accompany it.
Really? Is ‘luck’ really about instant gratification?
If I look back to the lives of great people, the answer I get is something absolutely different.
How to get very lucky in life
If you ask Warren Buffett how he got so lucky to have become one of the world’s richest men, what would be his answer?
And what would be the answer of someone like Pele who got lucky as the best footballer the world has ever seen?
In my view, the common answer that you would hear from these two great men will be – “Practice”.
Pele had, in fact, once said, “Everything is practice.”
I met an old friend a few days back and was talking about the Safal Niveshak initiative and how people are appreciating the investing ideas that I share with them day after day.
“Lucky boy,” he told me. “You are lucky to be able to write well. That must be the reason people like you!”
I was furious, though I kept my emotions at bay.
After spending the last 9 years of your life (many of them without receiving much recognition) learning how to create compelling information and nurture relationships with the people who interact with that information, if someone calls you ‘lucky’, what would be your reaction?
That isn’t luck, right?
As you would’ve realized in your own life, luck doesn’t just come pouring in all around you. You don’t just sit back and let it all happen.
Luck, like love, is a verb
Both luck and love are verbs that run on work. The practice is the reward.
When I practice, and when I do the work, I get lucky.
Your relationships work like that, don’t they? You need to nurture your business relationships. Your need to nurture your personal relationships. Everything you do to add value requires work.
Playing a musical instrument, painting, singing…or investing – are all skills that come from a lot of work.
A duck sliding like glass across a pond isn’t lucky to not drown in it. Instead, it’s working really hard – paddling furiously under the water to stay afloat and in motion.
So the idea is to ‘do the work’. Because when you practice, and when you do the work, you get lucky.
Want to get lucky in investing?
Here’s a simple trick you can use to become lucky in investing.
Don’t tell anyone that you want to become a successful investor and that you are going to put in the hard work to get there.
Telling someone about your goals (or resolutions) and talking about your goals out loud can have the opposite effect that you’re intending.
It can signal the body that you’ve already accomplished the goal, and that is what keeps you from actually doing the work you just got done telling everyone you were planning to do.
Talking about work is far less interesting. Actually doing it – practice – is what takes the cake.
When we practice consciously and with purpose, we became good at the things we really want to be good at.
When it comes to investing in stock markets, practicing the art of analyzing businesses by doing the hard work of reading about them and understanding them will help you pick the right stocks.
And practicing how to pick the right stocks from inside a heap of junk will make you a successful investor.
But then, remember that what I’m emphasizing here has nothing to do with ‘perfection’.
There is no perfect way of life, and you don’t need to strive to become a perfect investor.
I believe you’re already perfect as an individual. Now it’s your chance to bring that magic (luck) into your investing.
You see, some people are lucky in love by finding just the right person (like I did :-)), some are lucky by finding the right home or job, and some are lucky by building a successful business.
You can also get lucky as an investor…so practice.
And then bask in the glory of someone calling your hard work as ‘luck’.