With a plethora of breakthrough stories of those who succeeded below the age of 30, 25, or even 20, it’s easy to sink down into a hole of self-pity and insecurity. You may be asking yourself, “will I ever make it?” or “what am I doing with my life?”
While it’s important to remember that life is a marathon, not a race, and everything will happen in its perfect time and place, sometimes, we all need a little inspiration. It’s never too late to chase your passion and enjoy success however you personally define it. In case you need a little more push to start something new, here are some late bloomers who found their niche late in life:
The woman who introduced us to the wonderful wizarding world went through a divorce, joblessness, and was nearly homeless before the Harry Potter books became a worldwide phenomenon. At age 32, the first edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was published and enjoyed mild success before it snowballed into the powerhouse loved by billions today.
One of the most revered bridal and fashion designers in the world, Vera Wang didn’t switch careers and enter the world of fashion design until she was 40 years old. Beforehand, she was a competitive figure skater and journalist. Now, her fashion house enjoys worldwide fame, and countless women aspire to wear a Vera Wang design on their wedding day. Also, did you know that she’s already 71 years old?! She looks amazing!
The well-loved cooking book author, Julia Child, didn’t publish her first book until she was 49 years old. She gained worldwide fame when her television show took off in 1963, and she was 51 at the time. Now, her legacy is being shared through several Hollywood projects. She was even played by living legend Meryl Streep in a 2009 flick. What a compliment, right?
Also known as the British Bulldog, the ferocious British prime minister who led his country through World War II and then again from 1951 to 1955 spent nearly his whole life as a political failure before becoming the most powerful politician in his country at the ripe age of 62. He was living proof that you should try and try until you succeed.
Hollywood A-lister Samuel Jackson was a social activist in the ’70s and ’80s before he started acting professionally. It wasn’t until 1991 (he was 43 at the time) that he garnered attention for his performance as Gator in Jungle Fever. He then rose to superstardom after he starred in Quentin Tarantino’s magnum opus Pulp Fiction.
Considered one of the greatest contemporary filmmakers today, Ang Lee was a stay-at-home dad before he became a world-famous director at age 41. The director behind award-winning films such as Brokeback Mountain and Life of Pi chose to sacrifice his promising film career in order to take care of his children, and support his wife who is a molecular biologist.
Another Hollywood A-lister on this list is Bryan Cranston, who’s widely known as Walter White of Breaking Bad. Cranston didn’t strike gold until he bagged his role in Malcolm in the Middle in 2000. He was 44 at the time. Now, he enjoys an illustrious film and television career as well as a booming Mezcal business with fellow Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul.
These people are proof that just because your career didn’t take off in your 20’s doesn’t mean you’re doomed to be a failure. Whatever career setback you’ve encountered, you can start afresh, and try something new. Before you give up on your dreams, remember why you started. You might just be on the brink of a spectacular breakthrough.