You Have No Idea How Lucky You Are

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Reading time: 3 minutes

You will not like reading this. But if you’re anything like me, you need to read every line of it. Trust me on this. Because by the end of this post you will see the world differently. You will think differently. And you will thank me.

Let me start by pointing out something obvious about you. Something so evident that you don’t even think about it. Here it is:

You have no idea how lucky you are!

I’m sure this isn’t the first time you’ve heard this. And you may be tempted to close this tab because you’re tired of speeches like this.


I’m not a motivational guru who’s here to tell you that anything’s possible and that there’s a whole universe of opportunities deep inside you. I am a scientist. And I will prove, using facts and statistics, that you are one of the luckiest people that has ever lived.

Let me start by asking a few questions.

Do you know the odds of being born?

This is the most basic thing. It’s so basic that we take it for granted. But the chance of this one sperm cell being the fastest to reach an egg cell at the right time in the right place is 1 in 500.000.000! Imagine being in a race with five hundred million other people and winning it. That’s exactly what happened when you were conceived.

Do you have a toilet in your school?

If so, it means you are luckier than 230.000 Romanian kids, who have to study in schools where the toilet is in the backyard. And mind you, we’re talking about a country that’s in the EU. You don’t even want to know what the statistics look like in third world countries. Also, if you had been born just 2 centuries earlier, even being the king of France wouldn’t have given you access to a toilet.

Do you have clean water in your home?

Then you are luckier than 2.1 billion people. Let me spell that out: people don’t have clean water to drink, cook, or wash their face. If you picked 10 random people from around the globe, 3 of them would be in this situation. Think about this the next time you’re feeling too lazy to brush your teeth.

Have you involuntarily experienced war?

Chances are you haven’t. War-related deaths have been steadily declining for more than 100 years. Nowadays, the only place where you can still be a victim of war is the Middle East. But it’s a minor blip compared to previous decades. And even there, the situation is cooling down.

Source: Our World in Data

Do you know how to read and write?

This one’s pretty obvious since you are reading this right now. But it’s not at all obvious how we got here. Had you been born just a few centuries earlier, there’s a good chance you couldn’t read or write. And to learn it, you had to pledge your life to a monastery, spending most of your life praying and transcribing old sacred texts. I will let you decide if that’s worth it.

Are you living on more than $5.5/day?

Think of everything you eat, drink, watch, or consume on any given day. If it all adds up to more than $5.5 you are luckier than 46% of the world’s population. There are over 3.5 billion people out there surviving on less than five and a half dollars per day. Most of us spend more than that on coffee.

Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

Have I convinced you of the enormous amount of lucky in your life? Good.

But now you’re thinking: Well, if you put it like that. I guess I really am lucky. But how does this change anything in my life?

It doesn’t. And nothing I can ever say or do will really change your life. It’s all up to you.

I’m just here to help put things into perspective. To jolt you out of your comfort zone.

Right now you’re in a very cozy spot, living in a world full of cold places. Just pause for a moment to realize this. To feel grateful for it.

Seriously. I’ll wait. Stop reading and take a moment to realize everything you have.

You’re living in the safest and most prosperous period of human history. You have the technology to connect with millions of people all around the globe. And you have instant access to more knowledge than all the generations before you.

Now go out there and make something of it.

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