Luck is perceived by some people as a quality of the person (as opposed to the situation) that can be used to maximize the outcome of chance games. This paper reviews empirical studies that examine the conditions under which perceptions of personal luck can be experienced, and how it might facilitate the increase of gambling behavior to pathological levels. Specifically, the opportunity for choice and the experience of near outcomes in games of chance are considered as ways to affect the extent to which perceptions of personal luck are experienced. The ease of facilitating these perceptions suggests that personal luck may be an overlooked factor in the emergence of gambling pathology. As such, implications for gambling behavior and treatment of problem gamblers are discussed.

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Psychologie Francaise
Department of Psychology

Wohl, M. (2008). Belief in a lucky self: The role of personal luck in the facilitation and maintenance of gambling behavior. Psychologie Francaise, 53(1), 7–23. doi:10.1016/j.psfr.2006.08.004