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You Probably Aren’t Doing Any Of These Which Could Make You Luckier

You Probably Aren’t Doing Any Of These Which Could Make You Luckier

The best ways to get lucky are to stay positive and visualize success in your life. If you’d like to know how to be luckier, check out these 10 ways to get lucky in life.

1. Be Aware of (and Act on) Opportunities

“I’m a greater believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it” – Thomas Jefferson

How much luck do you think you can look forward to if you stay locked up in your house like a hermit? Probably not much. If you don’t get out there and take action, you’ll find yourself in a sad pit of doom that is devoid of opportunity. Wanna be lucky? Life isn’t a charity, so get to work.

2. Visualize Success

“Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.” – Lucius Annaeus Seneca

How well do you think you will perform on a date, job interview, or sporting event if your thoughts are filled with reasons you will fail? The odds would not be in your favor. The best athletes see themselves winning a game long before it starts. The best stage actors imagine an audience exploding with laughter and applause before they set foot on stage. If you’re going to a job interview, imagine how thoughtful your responses will be during your drive. If you’re preparing for a date, imagine how classy/handsome/sexy/funny the other person will find you while you get dressed. You must first see success happen before you can make it happen.

3. Focus on the Positive

“The best luck of all is the luck you make for yourself.” – Douglas MacArthur

An unfortunate thing that happened to me: Last week, my car engine died on the road going into my apartment complex. My vehicle didn’t come to a slow stop, but rather a dead halt. Let’s just say the bill from the mechanic wasn’t pretty, so I wasn’t very happy about this. But then it hit me: I was so lucky! My drive home that night included a 30-minute voyage on a crowded interstate. Now imagine how much worse my situation would have been if my car suddenly quit with a vehicle traveling 70 M.P.H. right behind me. I’m happy that I was lucky enough for my car to quit in the safety of my own parking lot, because had it gone out on the interstate, it’s very possible I wouldn’t be here to type this. Look for the good in all things.

4. Listen to Your Gut

“Humor has bailed me out of more tight situations than I can think of. If you go with your instincts and keep your humor, creativity follows. With luck, success comes, too.”Jimmy Buffett

Look, we all make the occasional bad decision, so it’s in your best interest to be decisive. Trust your gut instinct and allow your intuition to guide you. Of course, you could agonize over every single decision in your life, but there is no guarantee that all that extra deliberation will lead to an increased likelihood of success (odds are it’ll just result in wasted time and opportunity).

5. Brush Your Shoulders Off

“Most of us regard good luck as our right, and bad luck as a betrayal of that right.” – William Feather

NEWSFLASH: No, you can’t have it all. Yes, you will fail sometimes. No, life isn’t fair. Yes, you have to deal with it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oz_-VaTHpc8

6. Try Again from Another Angle

“Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck.” – Dalai Lama XIV

Just because your plan failed doesn’t necessarily mean it was a bad idea — it could just be your execution or that method of delivery needs to be tweaked. The more you learn and grow, the more “lucky” and successful you will be.

7. Reduce Stress and Negative Thinking

“Here’s the thing about luck…you don’t know if it’s good or bad until you have some perspective.” – Alice Hoffman

Remember that time agonizing over things beyond your control made all of your problems go away? Didn’t think so. Most of us are walking, talking balls of stress. If you’re so stressed out that you can’t think straight, open doors and opportunities will blow past you without the slightest recollection. The next time you’re feeling down, ask yourself these 10 questions that prove you’re doing better than you think (go ahead and bookmark that so you can repeat this exercise as needed!).

8. Live in the Now

“When it comes to luck, you make your own.” – Bruce Springsteen

It is easy to get so caught up in our own little worlds that we become oblivious to the other people, places, and things around us. Developing an ability to live in the present moment will help you notice opportunities that would otherwise breeze past without recollection.

9. Be Curious about Everything

“Ability is of little account without opportunity.” – Napoleon Bonaparte

Developing curiosity will help you open doors that were previously closed. How is that? Because being curious will give you a fresh perspective on things, arming you with an ability to identify solutions to problems that others might miss. The more creative and innovative you are, the more luck you can create for yourself. If you’d like to think more creatively, click here to learn 5 ways to develop curiosity.

10. Keep on Hustling

“Luck is a dividend of sweat. The more you sweat, the luckier you get.” – Ray Kroc

You don’t lose until you quit, so don’t quit.

Do you feel lucky, punk?

I hope these 10 steps help you get lucky in life. If you know any friends who’d like to know how to be luckier, go ahead and pass this article along!

More by this author

Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on March 14, 2019

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

Recruiters might hold thousands of interviews in their careers and a lot of them are reporting the same thing—that most candidates play it safe with the questions they ask, or have no questions to ask in a job interview at all.

For job applicants, this approach is crazy! This is a job that you’re going to dedicate a lot of hours to and that might have a huge impact on your future career. Don’t throw away the chance to figure out if the position is perfect for you.

Here are 7 killer questions to ask in a job interview that will both impress your counterpart and give you some really useful insights into whether this job will be a dream … or a nightmare.

1. What are some challenges I might come up against this role?

A lesser candidate might ask, “what does a typical day look like in this role?” While this is a perfectly reasonable question to ask in an interview, focusing on potential challenges takes you much further because it indicates that you already are visualizing yourself in the role.

It’s impressive because it shows that you are not afraid of challenges, and you are prepared to strategize a game plan upfront to make sure you succeed if you get the job.

It can also open up a conversation about how you’ve solved problems in the past which can be a reassuring exercise for both you and the hiring manager.

How it helps you:

If you ask the interviewer to describe a typical day, you may get a vibrant picture of all the lovely things you’ll get to do in this job and all the lovely people you’ll get to do them with.

Asking about potential roadblocks means you hear the other side of the story—dysfunctional teams, internal politics, difficult clients, bootstrap budgets and so on. This can help you decide if you’re up for the challenge or whether, for the sake of your sanity, you should respectfully decline the job offer.

2. What are the qualities of really successful people in this role?

Employers don’t want to hire someone who goes through the motions; they want to hire someone who will excel.

Asking this question shows that you care about success, too. How could they not hire you with a dragon-slayer attitude like that?

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How it helps you:

Interviewers hire people who are great people to work with, but the definition of “great people” differs from person to person.

Does this company hire and promote people with a specific attitude, approach, worth ethic or communication style? Are the most successful people in this role strong extroverts who love to talk and socialize when you are studious and reserved? Does the company reward those who work insane hours when you’re happiest in a more relaxed environment?

If so, then this may not be the right match for you.

Whatever the answer is, you can decide whether you have what it takes for the manager to be happy with your performance in this role. And if the interviewer has no idea what success looks like for this position, this is a sign to proceed with extreme caution.

3. From the research I did on your company, I noticed the culture really supports XYZ. Can you tell me more about that element of the culture and how it impacts this job role?

Of course, you could just ask “what is the culture like here? ” but then you would miss a great opportunity to show that you’ve done your research!

Interviewers give BIG bonus point to those who read up and pay attention, and you’ve just pointed out that (a) you’re diligent in your research (b) you care about the company culture and (c) you’re committed to finding a great cultural fit.

How it helps you:

This question is so useful because it lets you pick an element of the culture that you really care about and that will have the most impact on whether you are happy with the organization.

For example, if training and development is important to you, then you need to know what’s on offer so you don’t end up in a dead-end job with no learning opportunities.

Companies often talk a good talk, and their press releases may be full of shiny CSR initiatives and all the headline-grabbing diversity programs they’re putting in place. This is your opportunity to look under the hood and see if the company lives its values on the ground.

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A company that says it is committed to doing the right thing by customers should not judge success by the number of up-sells an employee makes, for instance. Look for consistency, so you aren’t in for a culture shock after you start.

4. What is the promotion path for this role, and how would my performance on that path be measured?

To be clear, you are not asking when you will get promoted. Don’t go there—it’s presumptuous, and it indicates that you think you are better than the role you have applied for.

A career-minded candidate, on the other hand, usually has a plan that she’s working towards. This question shows you have a great drive toward growth and advancement and an intention to stick with the company beyond your current state.

How it helps you:

One word: hierarchy.

All organizations have levels of work and authority—executives, upper managers, line managers, the workforce, and so on. Understanding the hierarchical structure gives you power, because you can decide if you can work within it and are capable of climbing through its ranks, or whether it will be endlessly frustrating to you.

In a traditional pyramid hierarchy, for example, the people at the bottom tend to have very little autonomy to make decisions. This gets better as you rise up through the pyramid, but even middle managers have little power to create policy; they are more concerned with enforcing the rules the top leaders make.

If having a high degree of autonomy and accountability is important to you, you may do better in a flat hierarchy where work teams can design their own way of achieving the corporate goals.

5. What’s the most important thing the successful candidate could accomplish in their first 3 months/6 months/year?

Of all the questions to ask in a job interview, this one is impressive because it shows that you identify with and want to be a successful performer, and not just an average one.

Here, you’re drilling down into what the company needs, and needs quite urgently, proving that you’re all about adding value to the organization and not just about what’s in it for you.

How it helps you:

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Most job descriptions come with 8, 10 or 12 different job responsibilities and a lot of them with be boilerplate or responsibilities that someone in HR thinks are associated with this role. This question gives you a better sense of which responsibilities are the most important—and they may not be what initially attracted you to the role.

If you like the idea of training juniors, for example, but success is judged purely on your sales figures, then is this really the job you thought you were applying for?

This question will also give you an idea of what kind of learning curve you’re expected to have and whether you’ll get any ramp-up time before getting down to business. If you’re the type of person who likes to jump right in and get things done, for instance, you may not be thrilled to hear that you’re going to spend the first three months shadowing a peer.

6. What do you like about working here?

This simple question is all about building rapport with the interviewer. People like to talk about themselves, and the interviewer will be flattered that you’re interested in her opinions.

Hopefully, you’ll find some great connection points that the two of you share. What similar things drive you head into the office each day? How will you fit into the culture?

How it helps you:

You can learn a lot from this question. Someone who genuinely enjoys his job will be able to list several things they like, and their answers will sound passionate and sincere. If not….well, you might consider that a red flag.

Since you potentially can learn a lot about the company culture from this question, it’s a good idea to figure out upfront what’s important to you. Maybe you’re looking for a hands-off boss who values independent thought and creativity? Maybe you work better in environments that move at a rapid, exciting pace?

Whatever’s important to you, listen carefully and see if you can find any common ground.

7. Based on this interview, do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?

What a great closing question to ask in a job interview! It shows that you’re not afraid of feedback—in fact, you are inviting it. Not being able to take criticism is a red flag for employers, who need to know that you’ll act on any “coaching moments” with a good heart.

As a bonus, asking this question shows that you are really interested in the position and wish to clear up anything that may be holding the company back from hiring you.

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How it helps you:

What a devious beast this question is! On the surface, it looks straightforward, but it’s actually giving you four key pieces of information.

First, is the manager capable of giving you feedback when put on the spot like this? Some managers are scared of giving feedback, or don’t think it’s important enough to bother outside of a formal performance appraisal. Do you want to work for a boss like that? How will you improve if no one is telling you what you did wrong?

Second, can the manager give feedback in a constructive way without being too pillowy or too confrontational? It’s unfair to expect the interviewer to have figured out your preferred way of receiving feedback in the space of an interview, but if she come back with a machine-gun fire of shortcomings or one of those corporate feedback “sandwiches” (the doozy slipped between two slices of compliment), then you need to ask yourself, can you work with someone who gives feedback like that?

Third, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about before you leave the interview. This gives you the chance to make a final, tailored sales pitch so you can convince the interviewer that she should not be worried about those things.

Fourth, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about period. If turnover is keeping him up at night, then your frequent job hopping might get a lot of additional scrutiny. If he’s facing some issues with conflict or communication, then he might raise concerns regarding your performance in this area.

Listen carefully: the concerns that are being raised about you might actually be a proxy for problems in the wider organization.

Making Your Interview Work for You

Interviews are a two-way street. While it is important to differentiate yourself from every other candidate, understand that convincing the interviewer you’re the right person for the role goes hand-in-hand with figuring out if the job is the right fit for you.

Would you feel happy in a work environment where the people, priorities, culture and management style were completely at odds with the way you work? Didn’t think so!

More Resources About Job Interviews

Featured photo credit: Amy Hirschi via unsplash.com

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