It's plain dumb luck all the way down

jasonleow  •  20 Sept 2022   •    

I wrote yesterday’s post insinuating that it was all my own doing and effort that brought me all the recent new opportunities for my consulting business.

But the hard truth is… I don’t feel like I did anything much. It felt like all luck.

People say there’s luck we can influence and plain dumb luck.

Luck we can influence are all the things I said I did that lead to the new opportunities:

  • Daily posts on LinkedIn to build a brand/audience
  • Engaging the posts of more local folks on LinkedIn
  • Going on a local podcast for visibility (it brought 1 lead so far!)
  • Fixing my consultancy website contact form
  • Having face-to-face meetings with leads for better impression
  • Actively reaching out to past contacts for work

It looks like I did a lot, and therefore I was rightly luckier due to that, isn’t it?


The deciding factor here is that I’ve done most on that list in the past too. Even recently, like a few months ago. But that didn’t bring me leads. There’s no guarantee that these specific set of activities brings in more opportunities. It so happened that in the larger scheme of things, COVID is lifting and government is starting to have capacity to consider service improvement projects again. I had no idea when or why that was happening. This property of the system is emergent on social forces beyond my comprehension.

More and more I find that “luck we can influence” is just a narrative of power we artificially ascribe to ourselves, over forces we can’t control in actuality.

It’s BS basically.


What I was doing was just to be prepared. But those actions had no bearing whatsoever on the opportunities that come along. It’s like tilling the soil and planting seeds and then expecting the rain to come on cue. We can’t influence rain, so how can we influence when luck lands?

At the end of the day, it’s really all just plain dumb luck. There’s no such things as luck we make ourselves.

But one thing’s for sure – if I didn’t till soil and plant seeds, even when rain comes I wouldn’t be able to benefit from it. If I didn’t prepare as I did, perhaps opportunities in the form of potential clients wouldn’t seek me out when they were ready.

To me that’s as much the extent we have over our lives and career.

I do what I can. But it’s ultimately still up to God. Or the Universe. Or chance. (Pick the higher power of your choice).

Ultimately, it’s plain dumb luck all the way down.