Last year was one of my unluckiest years. Surgery, a painful break-up, a bad housing situation, the resumption of SSRIs. Plus, by September 2022, I’d had 340 rejections within my career. This was everything from pitch ideas, agents and job applications. But once 2023 rolled around, I was determined that my luck would change. With #luckygirlsyndrome getting 382.2m hits on TikTok – though not without some arguably well-founded criticism – I was willing to jump on the bandwagon to see if I could get lucky, too.
As wise woman Molly Mae once put it: “We all have the same 24 hours in a day.” But what happens when you try really hard to make your own luck and life just keeps giving you bum steers? In November, I decided to bring in the big guns and buy some luck-boosting products to see if I could turn my life around.
I grabbed a bunch of supposedly luck-inducing products like “fast luck” soap, “fortune-seeking” floor wash, “money-drawing” aerosol room spray and “money-manifesting” candles off the shelves of Powerful Hand, a self-described spiritual shop in Brixton, London. When combined with their own rituals, they are meant guaranteed to make my luck change for the good.
In order to make a tangible before and after comparison, my first stop was the bookies. I lost a tenner within three minutes and instantly regretted it. But waiting for me when I got home was my box of lucky goodies. An overwhelmingly soapy – but simultaneously musty – smell hit me as I opened the package, making me question how much I wanted to be using these products around my house. But I persevered: spraying, lighting up the incense during my days working from home and only using the lucky soap to wash with.
One week passed: nothing. Then I received an email from a PR company saying that they’d like to gift me a £300 handbag, no social media post required. I’m a journalist, so this might not shock you. But as someone who writes mainly features and first person stories, this was the first time I'd ever been offered a PR gift. My first bout of luck! I accepted it with glee.
Soon I was washing my hands as ferociously as Lady Macbeth, willing the soap's luckiness to penetrate into my skin. I doused my room with the spray like a pest controller trying to get rid of an infestation and lit candles as if I was living with a permanent power cut. But as the weeks went on, the bag seemed to be my only obvious success. A potentially huge career move went to someone else at the last minute, a train delay made me miss an important meeting, six months of careful planning for a video project was almost destroyed after the microphones broke on the day – and the rejections? They kept on coming, too.
So where was I going wrong? I’d been using these products for a month – were they just not working or was my lack of faith the problem?
To answer my question, I went in search of help. Jay is an “aroma supplier”, according to Google. He runs a shop down the road from me in Stoke Newington called Mystic Fragrance, which describes itself as a “gateway to holistic health” and has been around since the 80s. Jay sells pretty much all of the products I've bought – if anyone could give me advice on them, it would be him.
I pulled my lucky products out of my bag and asked where I was going wrong. “What is luck to you?” he mused. I thought about it, but couldn’t really answer any better than “doing well”.
“Luck is all around us,” he said serenely. “You’re breathing, you’re alive, you’re healthy, you have food, a home. Sometimes we want more than we can have at the time.”
Jay used to run his place as a sweet shop, but then, as he puts it, the angels called him to change things. He now uses herbs and Eastern philosophy to help unblock people’s problems and give them more positive outlooks on life. He says that I should be using the art of manifesting while using my products – essentially, I need to believe that the good things I want will happen or are already happening.
“If you’re not truthful, you won't see results,” Jay advises. I need to start thinking about my true objectives in life in order to seek a change, apparently. “Luck,” he adds, “can always be changed.”
According to TikTok, I also needed to start changing my daily mindset if I was to become a super lucky girl. The next minute, scrolling through my phone, I see a beautiful girl walking through a sunset on holiday: “I get everything I want, because that’s just the way it is… things are always working out in my favour… I am so lucky… I am always in the right place at the right time,” declares content creator and social media manager @soulciabohemia in one of her videos about lucky girl syndrome.
“Believe you are the luckiest girl in the world,” says @tamkaur in her TikTok explainer of lucky girl syndrome. “The universe is literally rigged in your favour…. I cannot tell you how much this has changed my life. I've manifested money into my life, friendships…I embody lucky girl syndrome.”
Jay advises me to manifest by writing notes, setting intentions within my mind and constantly thinking of the positive changes I want to make in life, whether that be when lighting a candle, dusting my room or washing my hands. Then he picks up and shakes my lucky incense sticks, which I’ve been lighting indoors daily. “These are incredibly toxic – don’t burn these inside your home.” They’re supposed to be for your garden – oops.
Sure, I was sort of approaching this article as a funny bit, but Jay changed my outlook on things. He was right – in the simplistic sense, I am pretty fortunate. I live with lovely flatmates, in a nice place, in a nice area, I've got a family and partner who loves me, I can regularly afford my guilty pleasure items (lipsticks, burrata and Disney+). “Luck is all around us – it’s how you see it,” he added as I walked out the door.
I began to take Jay’s advice and was genuinely quite amazed at what came in the next two months. Four trips abroad for work, a free bunch of flowers, a surge in article commissions, exciting project meetings – and something I’d been trying to get rid of on Depop for a year finally sold. I even started twisting some things I’d normally attribute to unluckiness into luck; like when a flight abroad got cancelled but I got to spend an extra night in an amazing country.
Don’t get me wrong – not everything was perfect. Plenty of things still didn’t work out. I had a breast cancer scare, family illness and other serious issues to contend with. But developing a more positive outlook on my luck – as opposed to chalking everything up to misfortune – helped me to see what I actually had. The world isn’t always a lucky place. People don’t often get their fair share of luck. Why shouldn’t I appreciate things I’m lucky enough to already have?
For my final test of luck, I headed to the scratch card section of my local off-licence. As I placed a fiver on the counter and collected my cards, I tried to manifest the positive mental attitude that Jay had installed in me. I won £6. It might not be the Euromillions, but it was all the luck I needed to prove to myself that my life doesn’t suck – I just needed to view it differently.