Opportunity vs. Luck

My friend, Richard Dunn, has gone viral.  Or rather a video he made has gone viral, and he is currently basking in his 15 minutes of fame.  It couldn’t have happened to a more deserving guy.

And when I say deserving, I mean that he deserves the joy he is experiencing now, and whatever other good comes of this, because he worked really hard on that video. Go watch it and just try to imagine if you would be willing to put in the amount of effort it took to plan, shoot, and edit a video like that while stuck in an airport overnight.

I wouldn’t.  In that same situation, I’d be trying to find a safe, comfy place to sleep. Which is why I have not had any of my creations experience the level of attention his video is receiving now.

Mr. Dunn works hard at all his endeavors.  He’s shot and edited short videos as a hobby for years. His success as a freelance lighting designer requires searching for, recognizing and acting on opportunity.

Experience + Opportunity + Hard Work = Success.

Do you see what is NOT in that equation?  Luck.

When people use ‘luck’ to explain success, what they really mean is opportunity.

  • Opportunity – a set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something
  • Luck – success or failure apparently brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions

But see, the problem is that the ‘set of circumstances’ is completely controllable. And most people don’t want to hear that their failure is their own damn fault.

I certainly don’t.

But it is.

Rich, I am equal parts jealous/proud of you right now.  So proud that your hard work has paid off, and jealous as hell that I can’t get myself to work as hard as you do.

Congratulations my friend, I know you will stretch these 15 minutes into a lifetime of success.