Let's face it: life doesn't always go according to plan. In fact, life is what happens while you're making other plans.

To become a winner in the face of this unpredictability requires that you balance two seemingly contradictory ideas. The first is best expressed by the expression "If it's going to be, it's up to me." The second is nearly the opposite: "What will be, will be."

These two statements sound fine by themselves—but when you put them side-by-side they contradict each other. And yet, taking either of these statements to the extreme produces negative results.

For example, let's look at the first statement: If it's going to be, it's up to me. Taking that philosophy to the extreme leads to...