The difference between both may seem negligible but it isn’t. The first is the one that is coded into our biology. We look at people that are successful and think that they have done something right. And it is often the case that they have but if you only look at success you may confuse luck with success. Maybe you think the last winner of the lottery has done it right, because he is now rich. Or the heir of some rich guy has done something right. But if you look what they have done to be so successful you will find nothing. They haven’t earned it. I don’t want to sound jealous because I’m not. But I think it is wrong to educate yourself with the examples of lucky people. It won’t help you. The best you can do is to optimize the odds of success. And when you do that you will never play the lottery and you will also never win it. But that’s okay.
Another aspect of aspiring good odds of success is that success itself is not so relevant anymore. In this framework success is just something random which may come or may not. It should not be relevant for your mood. You can’t ensure success you can only make it more likely to happen. Success and failure are not important anymore. Maybe this isn’t clear. But let’s say you make a bet: You give your friend 10$ when he tosses a fair coin 10 times and it shows 10 times tails. If he tosses any heads he gives you 10$. Now should you play the game or not? Of course you should. You will win 1023 in 1024 times. But now reality strikes and he tosses 10 times tails. You loose. But have you made a bad decision? No, you haven’t. It is just that you want to have the best possible odds of success but what in reality happens is not in your hand. So although you have failed you have not made a mistake. That is what I mean, when I say success and failure becomes irrelevant.
So the next time you fail think back and answer the following question honest: “With only the things I have known at the time of the decision, did I make a wrong decision? Or was it not possible to see that this will happen?” If you come to the answer that you have decided correct then don’t let the failure pull you down too much because it isn’t your fault. Of course there are still failures. But you can decide before you do the action whether you want to fail or succeed. Either you do the thing with the highest odds of success or you don’t. If you don’t, you have failed.