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Designing your own lucky charms may be the next big thing.

Actress Cameron Diaz’s lucky charm pendant is a golden horseshoe necklace set with dazzling diamonds. Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler won’t go on stage without an unusual custom necklace made from raccoon teeth he found in the woods as a child. When he played with the Chicago Bulls, Michael Jordan wore his college team shorts underneath his NBA uniform. Tiger Woods wears a red shirt on golf tournament Sundays. And President Obama? The many lucky charms he carried in his pocket before last year’s election included an assortment of coins, rings, medallions and other trinkets pressed into his palms by supporters he met on the campaign route.

Don’t dismiss these good luck talismans as mere superstition, however. According to a 2010 study published in the American Journal of Psychological Science, researchers at the University of Cologne found that all those rabbits’ feet and four leaf clovers really can make a difference for the better. As part of the study, one group of adults was encouraged to have their lucky talisman with them as they took a series of physical and mental tests, and in another group, participants were not allowed access to their charms. The results? Participants with the charms performed significantly better, particularly in the activity of putting golf balls! Those wearing charms also reported feeling more confident in achieving tasks given to them.

Of course, the idea of carrying a lucky charm pendant is nothing new. The Celts wore intricately carved amulets to protect themselves harm and give them courage in battle. In traditional Native American medicine, lucky charm pendants of herbs or other objects may be worn for healing sickness. New Age healing practices frequently incorporate crystals for healing and personal protection. Even the Japanese “beckoning cat” lucky talisman, long a mainstay in Asian grocery stores and restaurants, is now showing up in pendant size to wear around the neck as a lucky charm pendant for personal good fortune and protection.

Don’t have a personal good luck charm? Well, you’re in luck! Here are some are tips for picking the perfect lucky talisman to help bring you good fortune:

Good things come in small packages: A good luck charm should be something that is easily wearable, such as a charm or pendant necklace or a lapel pin, or be an object that can be easily kept in your pocket, such as a custom coin or a personal medallion.

Consider what’s important to you: Do you have a deep religious faith? Are you a committed member of a certain nonprofit organization or charity group? Are you a loyal fan of a certain sport or sports team? Custom lucky charm pendants, pins, medals, and coins featuring what you’re passionate about may be just what’s needed to tip the scales in your favor

Look for a sign: Out of nowhere, did you find a valuable coin sticking out of the sand at the beach? Or go to a yard sale only to find a pendant necklace identical to the one you remember your dear great grandmother wearing when you were a child? Have you ever opened a drawer and stumbled across a lapel pin worn by your father or grandfather that you swear wasn’t there before — and that you had thought was long gone? You may want to view these “lucky” occurrences as evidence these lucky talismans are infused with the right kind of magic.

Look to traditions: Birthstones, custom charms and pendants representing astrological signs or animals from the Chinese zodiac, crystals, four leaf clovers, the Egyptian Eye of Horus charm for health and protection, Turkish “evil eye” protective pendants… If you are stuck coming up with an idea for your perfect charm, take your pick from lucky talismans people have carried with them for centuries for good luck.

Whatever you come up with as your personal token, the most important part is to let the trinket work its magic! When you have a big undertaking that you could use a little extra help with, remember to focus on your good luck charm for a minute and allow yourself to feel more confident in the sports competition, final exam, first date, or job interview. Good luck!

 

Sources:

Wall Street Journal: The Power of Lucky Charms: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703648304575212361800043460.html

Time Magazine: Obama’s Lucky Charms: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1867123,00.html#ixzz2R7huCYM8