The Lucky And The Wise

Written by Sean Murphy. Posted in Rules of Thumb, skmurphy

The Little Ways That Encourage Good Fortune

Wisdom is having things right in your life
and knowing why.
If you do not have things right in your life
you will be overwhelmed:
you may be heroic, but you will not be wise.
If you have things right in your life
but do not know why,
You are just lucky, and you will not move
in the little ways that encourage good fortune.

The saddest are those not right in their lives
who are acting to make things right for others:
they act only from the self–
and that self will never be right:
no luck, no help, no wisdom.

William Edgar Stafford

How can entrepreneurs move in the little ways that encourage good fortune? Here are my suggestions for judging your actions:

  • Is it kind?
  • Does it spring from empathy?
  • Does it demonstrate love for your spouse?
  • Will it maintain or improve your health?
  • Will it nurture your children?
  • Does it contribute to your community?

It can be hard to assess whose advice to take about your business. One reason for cultivating at least a kitchen cabinet of informal advisors, if not a more formal advisory board, is that a diversity of perspectives can normally provide more insights into opportunities, risks, and options for managing them. Advice from a lucky entrepreneur tends to be very specific and suggest a “copy exactly” model, a wise entrepreneur will offer principles and several alternatives with one or two approaches recommended as either most likely to succeed or least risky.

“It’s hard to detect good luck–it looks so much like something you’ve earned.”
Frank A. Clark

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