Long before the movie came out, Serendipity has always been one of my favourite words, purely because of the meaning.
Serendipity means a “ fortunate accident” or “pleasant surprise”; Any event or incident that happens purely by chance while one is not actively searching for it, resulting in a life transforming happy outcome – ‘Serendipity‘.
Many inventions and discoveries owe their existence to serendipity.
Fireworks, Superglue, Penicillin, Isaac Newton’s discovery of gravity and the discovery of America by Columbus – just to name a few!
Are the examples given above just pure luck and happened just because somebody was at the right place at the right time, or is there something more to it?
Reflect on the fact that everybody would not have reacted like Newton if an apple fell on their heads and started wondering about gravity. But Newton did, he recognized and took advantage of the event. Are there ways in which we can improve our ability to recognize and take advantage of events, which can bring about a great change in our lives or perhaps to the whole world?
When I came across the SerenA project I was immediately intrigued. University College London has a project running on Serendipity in which it is trying to find out if there are patterns to people’s experiences that could help us to recognize and take advantage of such events. What a brilliant idea!
With many stories submitted from people all over the world, what have the researchers found to be the common denominator?
Well, people who converted those opportunities into positive outcomes had two things in common. The first trait was their ability to recognize the opportunity, and the second was their willingness to act on it. Action is always needed to translate the opportunity to a desirable end result.
‘First, you need to notice the old friend. Then you need to stop and talk to them, even though you might be busy or running late. Finally, you need to follow-up on whatever might come out of that conversation.’
In short, serendipity involves an element of luck that is out of our control but you also have to have the wisdom to spot the opportunity and act. Without the latter, the opportunity would be lost.
So why do some people seem luckier than others? It is simple! These people are more open to recognising an opportunity and seizing it. What makes them different from others is their ability to be open-minded, to look for the signs that could lead to an opportunity as opposed to people who are anxious, tense and worried all the time which disrupts their ability to be aware of the unexpected.
Being outgoing and interacting with people and your surroundings will provide you with a higher chance of hitting that lucky chance or situation, leading you into a Serendipitous moment,– coming off as luck to an onlooker who is afraid of failure and doesn’t step outside of their comfort zone.
People interpret serendipity in a lot of different ways but it all comes down to, not what you see, but what you do with it.
“The harder I work, the luckier I get.” – Samuel Goldwyn
Article By: Charlene Barry | Addicted2Success.com