Random Chance

For almost two decades I’ve watched my friend perform well in chance-based games. Dice, cards, spinners, computer-based, it doesn’t matter. If I dare play against her, she beats me big-time. She seems to have an ability to influence randomness in her favor. It’s a fairer fight when we play strategy-based games — but she’s good at all types.

We were playing a non-strategic dice-based game the other night that had the potential to go on endlessly, but it didn’t. While I sat there rolling useless number after useless number she kept rolling the numbers she needed. The game ended quickly. Huh? I thought random chance and probability distribution are supposed to be real things.

But for the last twenty years I’ve witnessed this: she’s lucky and I’m not. I asked her about it, and she told me that before she rolls she visualizes the exact outcome she needs. Me, I just roll and get whatever I get. Is it true though, that expectations manifest actual results? Whatever the mechanism, she’s highly skilled at achieving her desired outcome within these game-playing scenarios.

I’ve always viewed success in life as stemming from random chance and luck — some people are blessed with opportunities while others aren’t. But perhaps outcomes aren’t so accidental — perhaps expectations shape circumstances. This outlook seems to imply that aspirations influence life. And it seems true that those of us wandering through life without direction get exactly what we wish for: nothing.

If that’s the case, then it’s not randomly generated circumstances that make for a miserable life — it’s bleak expectations that generate miserable circumstances. Therefore, we should concentrate on altering our expectations, modifying our thoughts about life and how it works. To change the external, we must first imagine what it is we want to see.