Luck Be a Lady Tonight

LuckThe self-serving bias is our tendency to see the good stuff that happens as our doing (“we had a great week of practice, worked really hard and executed on Sunday”) while the bad stuff is rarely our fault (“It just wasn’t our night” or “we simply couldn’t catch a break” or “we would have won if the refereeing hadn’t been so awful”).  Thus desirable results are typically due to our skill and hard work — not luck — while lousy results are outside of our control and frequently the offspring of being unlucky.

Two fine recent books undermine this outlook by (rightly) attributing a surprising amount of what happens to us — both good and bad — to luck. Continue reading