There is much that people do designedly to exercise some control over their personal development and life circumstances. But there is a lot of fortuity in the course lives takes. Indeed, some of the most important determinants of life paths occur through the most trivial of circumstances.

Fortuity does not mean uncontrollability of its effects. People can bring some influence to bear on the fortuitous character of life. They can make change happen by pursuing an active life that increases the number and type of fortuitous encounters they will experience. People also make chance work for them by cultivating their interests, enabling beliefs, and competencies. These personal resources enable them to make the most of opportunities that arise unexpectedly.

Bandura, A. (1982). The psychology of chance encounters and life paths. American Psychologist, 37, 747-755.
Bandura, A. (1998). Exploration of fortuitous determinants of life paths. Psychological Inquiry, 9, 95-99.
Bandura, A. (2008). The reconstrual of "free will" from the agentic perspective of social cognitive theory. In J. Baer, J.C. Kaufman & R.F. Baumeister (Eds.), Are we free? Psychology and free will (pp. 86-127). Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Bandura A.(1986) Social foundations of though and action: A social cognitive theory (Chapter 1). Prentice Hall.