I recently had to prepare a speech on being creative; writing a speech is an interesting process and very different to blogging! It made me think about things in a different way and it was nice to relive some memories that I associate with creativity, opportunity and luck.
One memory that really stood out for me was of my little brother Sam.
One of my vivid childhood memories is of walking down the street in Palmerston North which is a small town in New Zealand with my little brother Sam. I was 9 or 10 and we were sauntering along when Sam bent over a picked up a $20 note out of the gutter. When you are a kid in NZ in the 80’s $20 is a hell of a lot of money and for us all our Christmases had come at once. We raced home and realised that there was enough for us to buy a present for everyone in the family.
Now my brother was notoriously lucky at finding money, 50c here or $2 there, lucky lucky Sam would always find money. So while this was an especially incredible find the act itself was not unfamiliar.
Sam taught me my first real lesson in luck, and more importantly that you create your own luck, because on any given day if you followed my brother down the road, you would see a little boy… on the hunt… kicking aside leaves, flipping over stones, testing parking meters, scrounging in bins, emptying bags and peering over walls always with his eyes peeled, always looking for money.
Now, it might sound like he was a young hobo, but he was simply dedicated in his pursuit of an increase in his personal wealth. People from the outside only saw how lucky he was, but the secret to his so called luck I believe was determination and persistence… he was a boy out to create his own luck and as he matured, so did his opportunities. When he was 17 he won a full scholarship to an international airline and at 19 he started his career as one of the youngest international pilots ever to work in the field.
At every stage his “lucky” breaks are impressive but if you know Sam you would know a gentle yet powerful determination and I am often inspired by him. He has a gift of belief that makes anything possible.
When was the last time you created your own luck? When was the last time you created a lucky opportunity (large or small) just by being persistent?