We are counselled to fix our eyes on our goals, looking neither to the right nor to the left, refusing to be distracted. This is supposed to be the sure route to success. But here is a puzzling fact. It turns out that lucky men and women, on the whole are not straight-line strugglers. They not only permit themselves to be distracted, they invite distraction. Their lives are not straight lines but zigzags. …
If you put blinders on yourself so that you can see only straight ahead, you will miss nearly everything. This is what the unlucky typically do. They stick to preplanned life routes even when they are going nowhere or are actually plodding downhill to disaster.
— Max Gunther
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