Ellen Weinstein/For The Washington Post

Outlook

Recipes for success from famous people

Ellen Weinstein/For The Washington Post

Ellen Weinstein is the author and illustrator of "Recipes for Good Luck." @eweinsteinilloz

How do the most high-achieving performers get into the best mind-set for their work, their competitions, their experiments? Can they make their own luck? I set out to answer that question and discovered that writers, inventors, artists, musicians, athletes, scientists and actors often look for a particular routine that, rightly or wrongly, they associate with their success. No two people are alike, and neither were their "Recipes for Good Luck," as I called my book on the subject.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Anthony Bourdain | Punk classics

Chef, author and TV personality Anthony Bourdain developed a ritual during his days in the kitchen at Les Halles: The go-to soundtrack for his food prep routine featured a collection of mid-’70s New York punk classics. Music has been an essential ingredient in Bourdain’s life, and his taste for it began in his childhood, when his father worked for Columbia Records.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Coco Chanel | Lucky number 5

French clothing designer Coco Chanel was deeply superstitious. She was reportedly informed by a fortune-teller that 5 was her lucky number, and she named her famed fragrance accordingly. Her apartment also contained a crystal chandelier whose arms were twisted into the number 5, and she liked to present her collections on the fifth day of May.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Benjamin Franklin | Air baths

Author, inventor, diplomat, scientist and Founding Father Benjamin Franklin swore by air baths. Before he started to work, Franklin would sit without any clothes on for 30 minutes or hour in front of an open window. He wrote that the shock of cold water was too violent for him and that it was more agreeable to bathe in cold air. Franklin would either read or write during his "bath."

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Charles Dickens | Slept facing north

Charles Dickens, the 19th-century social critic who authored "Great Expectations," "A Christmas Carol" and many other classics, carried a navigational compass with him at all times and always faced north while he slept — a practice that he believed improved his creativity and writing.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Bjorn Borg | Playoff beard

Tennis great Bjorn Borg is the first known athlete to cultivate the superstitious "playoff beard." Borg would prepare for Wimbledon by growing a beard and wearing the same Fila shirt for every match. While repeating this ritual, he won five straight Wimbledon titles from 1976 to 1980. Since then, athletes in professional football, hockey and baseball have all adopted this practice.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck

Isabel Allende | Starting date

Chilean American author Isabel Allende began writing her first novel on Jan. 8, 1981. What had started as a letter to her dying grandfather eventually became "The House of the Spirits." Allende now begins all of her books on that same day — initially thanks to the commercial success of her first book but now, she says, because she can work in productive solitude on a day people know not to disturb her.

Ellen Weinstein/Recipes for Good Luck