How can you increase your surface area for serendipity?

Chuck Frey
4 min readSep 15, 2021
Photo by Amy Reed on Unsplash

How can you increase the volume of opportunities in your life?

In other words, how can you enable potential investors or business partners, lucrative new clients, incredible job offers and unbelievable luck to FIND YOU more often.

One simple but powerful way to invite more luck into your life is to increase your “surface area” for opportunities.

I recently came across this fascinating concept in a podcast interview between Nathan Barry, host of The Art of Newsletters, and Packy McCormick, a successful investment newsletter author.

It intrigued me so much that I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

I especially loved the whole “surface area” concept. In many applications, increasing something’s surface area significantly increases its efficiency:

  • A car’s radiator contains a pattern of fins that dramatically increase the total square inches where cooling can take place.
  • A sponge is able to absorb many times its own weight of liquid because of the intricate network of holes in its structure.

What if we could present a “surface” that invites a greater number of amazing opportunities?

The concept dates back to a 2011 article by blogger and coder Jason Roberts, who coined the term “luck surface area” to describe this phenomenon.

The idea is simple: The amount of serendipity in your life is directly proportional to the degree to which you do something you’re passionate about, combined with the total number of people to whom you communicate your ideas.

“When you pour energy into a passion, you develop an expertise and an expertise of any kind is valuable. But quite often that value can actually be magnified by the number people who are made aware of it,” Roberts explains. “The more people with whom you share your passion, the more who will be pulled into your orbit.”

Roberts expresses it as a simple formula: L = D x T, where L is luck, D is doing and T is telling.



Chuck Frey

Thought leader in mind mapping, visual thinking and creativity for 15+ years. Relentless explorer, learner and dot-collector. I help you elevate your thinking.