“Find a penny, pick it up and all day long you’ll have good luck.”
Most have you have probably heard this expression before. You’re walking down the crowded busy street when all of a sudden, you spot with your little eye honest Abe smiling up at you from the sidewalk. You stop in your tracks. You don’t care if you cause a minor collision with the hoards of pedestrians busily trying to get to where they need to go nor do you mind if you look a little awkward as you bend over in the middle of a cross walk for no apparent reason. All of the effort is worth it because this little copper coin has just landed you a day full of luck…and who couldn’t use a bit of that every now and then?
There is no scientific proof that simply picking up a penny will give you stupendous luck for the rest of the day, but I like to think it does. I’m not superstitious gal (with the exception of my lucky socks and baseball hat that I HAVE to wear every time the Brewers play) and generally don’t take too much stake in things like this, but there is a certain feeling of optimism and hope that you get whenever you do find that ‘lucky penny’ that is insurmountable. It’s the belief that maybe, just maybe, this little coin will have some sort of positive impact on your life. I guess you could say it has a pretty powerful placebo effect; the penny may just be that, a penny. However, you trick yourself into thinking that it is some magical coin which possesses some sort of lucky influence. In turn, it makes you do things and behave a certain way that ultimately changes the outcome of your day…you make your own luck.
I was thinking about the powerful yet subtle effects that finding a lucky penny brings as I was taking a stroll down my block earlier this afternoon. I was crossing the street when I happened to glimpse out of the corner of my eye my very own lucky penny. I stooped down and snatched the coin up, turning it around in my fingers for a brief moment. It was very old–minted all the way back in 1945–and covered in dirt, but I put it in my pocket anyway for safe keeping, hoping that it would bring good luck. Whether it actually would or not I didn’t know, but I instantly felt like I had a bit more of a skip in my step, like anything could happen. It may sound a little silly, but I am that crazy person who you see bending over in the supermarket, on the sidewalk and in the aisles of Target, dropping bags and purses (and that one time flashing some poor guy my skivies…just one reason this chica doesn’t do skirts) all to get a mere penny. I have done it since I was a wee lass and probably will continue to do so. Like I said, the lucky penny may just be a penny, but it kind of gives me hope that it is much more than that.
If finding a penny on the ground could turn my frown upside down and turn a very blah sort of day into something great, I wondered if it could do the same for other people. How cool would it be if I could change someone’s hour or day or life simply by emptying out my pocket change?
I know what it’s like to be going through a hard time, to be having a bad day or to feel like things are just not going your way. Life is hard and stressful, full of pressures and expectations. It can get pretty overwhelming at times for sure but I know also know what it’s like to suddenly feel like you can make it, like you have the strength and the courage and the power to turn things around for the better. It is such a great feeling. Now I know it takes a heck of a lot more than finding a silly penny to make these things happen (but wouldn’t it be great if it didn’t?) but setting up an opportunity for people to find their ‘luck’, to put a smile on their face and a skip in their step is a huge step in the right direction.
That is why I came up with and have started the ‘Change for Change’ initiative. I plan on spreading a little ’luck’ everywhere I go by sporadically dropping and leaving pennies in areas where people are likely to see, and if they so choose, pick up. I am not sure if anyone follows the “find a penny pick it up” notion quite like I do, but I am willing to take that chance in hopes of brightening someone’s day and giving them the same hope that I receive whenever I stumble across that infamous one cent piece. The whole concept is really so easy and fun to do. Break a dollar? Find some change in your couch? Have a purse or bag or wallet that weighs a bajillion pounds due to all that loose coinage happening in there? Take some of those pennies and set them aside for “Change for Change’. When you find a prime spot to drop them, do it. It’s that simple. I completed my first penny-drop today, using the very penny I had found earlier, outside of a Starbucks and actually got to see my efforts pay off. A little girl found my penny just moments after I had made the drop and squealed with delight as she picked it up, smiling ear to ear and exclaiming to her mom, “Mom look what I found! A lucky penny!” I’m not gonna lie, it made my heart smile just a wee bit.
I would absotively-positutely love it if you would like to join me in this challenge, paying it forward and changing lives, once penny at a time (and please feel free to share your stories with me if you do!).
I hope you all have a very lucky rest of your Tuesday guys!