Be bold when the signs are good

Rummaging in a kitchen cabinet, I dislodged a jar of peanut butter, which fell towards the floor. Without looking, I caught it deftly in my left hand and placed it back on the shelf.

It reminded me of an incident many years ago, when my friend Maurice was being interviewed for a sales job. He was facing a panel of three, one of whom asked if he would like a cigarette. When Maurice accepted, the man threw him his packet of cigarettes and a box of matches, which did not arrive together.

Maurice easily caught them both and said he knew instinctively, at that moment, that the job was his. As it proved to be. That clever catch was enough to confirm him as a winner.

There are days when everything seems to fit together, when you feel in rhythm with the world around you. Days when you can drop something breakable and catch it before it hits the floor. Days when you can catch whatever is thrown at you, and be in control. Days when you are The Special One.

We all have those days. But perhaps we don’t always recognise them or make the most of the opportunities they present.

Shakespeare wrote, “There is a tide in the affairs of men which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune.” It’s easy to perceive that at the macro level – the right moment for the Chancellor of the Exchequer to Budget for growth, for the Prime Minister to call a General Election, for London to bid for the Olympics..

But it applies equally on the micro level—days when you are in tune with the energy around you, when you are on form, when others respond well to you. Those are the days to go for it, to take a chance, to change jobs or start a new business, knowing that you cannot fail.

On those days when the signs are good, be bold.