With St. Patrick’s Day upon us, you may be tempted only to think about green beer and shamrocks, but the Irish culture has a long history of lucky disruptors who transformed problems into opportunities and struggle into achievements, all of which are lucky qualities every entrepreneur can learn from.
Here are three lucky character traits from the Irish that will make you a better entrepreneur.
Be courageous. Ireland has a long list of courageous nationals who fought for the free Ireland they wanted -- everyone from mythical figure Queen Maeve who supposedly ruled Ireland in 100 A.D. to the "Pirate Queen" Grace O'Malley who beat Queen Elizabeth in a battle and Irish politician Michael Collins, who led the Irish cessation from England.
While the Irish may have struggled throughout their history with both threats and realities of being conquest, the Irish people have consistently been courageous and stood up to oppressing forces.
How you can have the "luck of the Irish?" Being an entrepreneur requires courage. (Hopefully it never requires you to put you’re your life at stake, but it certainly requires putting your secure and financial life at stake.) You’ll be striking out into business on your own and risking much in the hopes of success. Maybe you’ll be lucky straight off and maybe you won’t, but you can take a note from the Irish and increase your odds of luck by being courageous in your entrepreneur endeavors.
Be creative. Many of the most famed Irishmen and women are artists. William Butler Yeats is perhaps one of the best-known poets and important literary figures of the 20th century. Equally revered is Irish literary James Joyce. Completing and comprehending his famous novel Ulysses is still quite an accomplishment for modern readers. There are other famous creative types from Ireland today, like the mega-successful group U2 and songstress Enya.
Creativity promotes flexibility of the mind and a flexible mind is a great tool for creating “luck” out of opportunities and challenges.
Related: Can You Design Your Own Luck?
How can you have the "luck of the Irish?" Creativity and a commitment to what you love will get you far as an entrepreneur. Irishwoman Enya has sold more than 70 million albums and is Ireland’s most popular solo artist. Likewise the incredible success of rock band U2 and Ireland’s many literary greats like Yeats and Joyce further confirm that when you follow your conviction, you’ll be prepared for better lucky opportunities.
Be persistent. The first female president, Mary Robinson, served Ireland from 1990 to 1997. But what is even more impressive about Robinson is what she did after the presidency. Robinson pursued her passion for human rights and was appointed the United Nations high commissioner for human rights from 1997 to 2002. After leaving her post at the U.N., Robinson founded Realizing Rights: The Ethical Globalization Initiative, which existed for eight years to influence policy makers about securing human rights on a global level. Since the project’s end in 2010, Robinson has gone on to serve as the chair to the board of The Mary Robinson Foundation - Climate Justice. The foundation’s mission is to be a center for “thought leadership, education and advocacy on the struggle to secure global justice for those people vulnerable to the impacts of climate change who are usually forgotten - the poor, the disempowered and the marginalized across the world.”
Robinson has led a life dedicated to being persistent in pursuit of the cause she believes in.
How can you have the "luck of the Irish?" Be persistent of the things that really matter to you and be open to opportunities that will help you in unexpected ways. Robinson’s time in office gave her the clout, network and ability to pursue the human rights issues she wanted. Usually an entrepreneur’s path isn’t straight but no matter the journey, you can always focus on moving persistently toward the direction of your goals.