“Life is not quantifiable in terms of age, but I suppose in my fifties I am more grounded and more at ease in my own skin than when I was younger. I have a confidence that I didn’t have before from the experiences I’ve had.” – Annie Lennox
We live in a society that is incredibly ageist, especially for women. We believe that success at a young age is to have it all – be young, beautiful, and have the world at our feet. Yet the reality is that we don’t have the same life experience when we are young that we do at middle age. We may not even know yet what it is we want, and no amount of pressure when we are young is going to get us there faster. Here are some examples that are proof that dreams can be realised at any age!Advertising
Find Your Heart and Soul in Food and Self Love
Julia Child was over 50 years old when she wrote her first cookbook. In the 1950s she began to teach the art of French cuisine to housewives, which branched into a passionate career spanning television programmes, winning awards, and writing cookbooks about her chosen speciality and great love: food.
Hear The World Speak To You in Color
World famous fashion designer Vera Wang was over 40 years old when she began a career in fashion and design. Previously she had been a figure skater and journalist, which just goes to show that you can try many things before really landing on the thing that you shine at.Advertising
Write The Book That Has Forever Lived In You
If you have ever felt like you wanted to do something – now is the time. On The Origin of Species was published when Charles Darwin was 50 years old and the book went on to change the natural course of science forever more. Imagine if he had never bothered to pick up the pen? It’s important to make the move toward your passion and worry about how it will be received later – or not at all. Do it simply because you must.
Let The Passion Guide You
Anna Mary Robertson Moses, otherwise known as ‘Grandma Moses’, was a twentieth-century artist who began her painting career at the age of 78. Until Moses turned to painting she had worked as a seamstress for her whole life. A piece of her work sold posthumously in 2006 for $1.2 million, and her work has been displayed in galleries around the world. Moses was also mother to ten children and her work was lovingly distributed on the well-known Hallmark cards.Advertising
Be A Winner As The Underdog – Literally
Carol Gardner was freshly divorced, feeling depressed, with little prospects and a lot of debt at the age of 52. Her lawyer told her to ‘get a therapist, or get a dog’. She chose the dog – an English bulldog she called Zelda. She entered Zelda into a Christmas card competition – and won. After sending the image of her and her pooch to family on Christmas cards, Gardner decided to start her own unique company designing greeting cards, clothing, jewellery, books and gifts. Her original spin is the hilarious wit she adds, with one-liners such as “Go braless…it pulls the wrinkles down”. She encourages one to laugh with life – and Hallmark seemed to like it! Her company, Zelda Wisdom, is now valued at approximately $50 million.
There is no such thing as ‘too late’ to reach a goal or to achieve a dream. If you believe in yourself and you work hard, if you define your own personal idea of success, there is no reason you shouldn’t have the things you want for your life.Advertising
Featured photo credit: Zelda Wisdom via zeldawisdom.com
Last Updated on December 3, 2019
10 Life Lessons You’d Better Learn Early on in Life
There are so many lessons I wish I had learned while I was young enough to appreciate and apply them. The thing with wisdom, and often with life lessons in general, is that they’re learned in retrospect, long after we needed them. The good news is that other people can benefit from our experiences and the lessons we’ve learned.
Here’re 10 important life lessons you should learn early on:
1. Money Will Never Solve Your Real Problems
Money is a tool; a commodity that buys you necessities and some nice “wants,” but it is not the panacea to your problems.
There are a great many people who are living on very little, yet have wonderfully full and happy lives… and there are sadly a great many people are living on quite a lot, yet have terribly miserable lives.
Money can buy a nice home, a great car, fabulous shoes, even a bit of security and some creature comforts, but it cannot fix a broken relationship, or cure loneliness, and the “happiness” it brings is only fleeting and not the kind that really and truly matters. Happiness is not for sale. If you’re expecting the “stuff” you can buy to “make it better,” you will never be happy.
2. Pace Yourself
Often when we’re young, just beginning our adult journey we feel as though we have to do everything at once. We need to decide everything, plan out our lives, experience everything, get to the top, find true love, figure out our life’s purpose, and do it all at the same time.
Slow down—don’t rush into things. Let your life unfold. Wait a bit to see where it takes you, and take time to weigh your options. Enjoy every bite of food, take time to look around you, let the other person finish their side of the conversation. Allow yourself time to think, to mull a bit.
Taking action is critical. Working towards your goals and making plans for the future is commendable and often very useful, but rushing full-speed ahead towards anything is a one-way ticket to burnout and a good way to miss your life as it passes you by.
3. You Can’t Please Everyone
“I don’t know the secret to success, but the secret to failure is trying to please everyone” – Bill Cosby.
You don’t need everyone to agree with you or even like you. It’s human nature to want to belong, to be liked, respected and valued, but not at the expense of your integrity and happiness. Other people cannot give you the validation you seek. That has to come from inside.
Speak up, stick to your guns, assert yourself when you need to, demand respect, stay true to your values.
4. Your Health Is Your Most Valuable Asset
Health is an invaluable treasure—always appreciate, nurture, and protect it. Good health is often wasted on the young before they have a chance to appreciate it for what it’s worth.
We tend to take our good health for granted, because it’s just there. We don’t have to worry about it, so we don’t really pay attention to it… until we have to.
Heart disease, bone density, stroke, many cancers—the list of many largely preventable diseases is long, so take care of your health now, or you’ll regret it later on.
5. You Don’t Always Get What You Want
“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” – John Lennon
No matter how carefully you plan and how hard you work, sometimes things just don’t work out the way you want them to… and that’s okay.
We have all of these expectations; predetermined visions of what our “ideal” life will look like, but all too often, that’s not the reality of the life we end up with. Sometimes our dreams fail and sometimes we just change our minds mid-course. Sometimes we have to flop to find the right course and sometimes we just have to try a few things before we find the right direction.
6. It’s Not All About You
You are not the epicenter of the universe. It’s very difficult to view the world from a perspective outside of your own, since we are always so focused on what’s happening in our own lives. What do I have to do today? What will this mean for me, for my career, for my life? What do I want?
It’s normal to be intensely aware of everything that’s going on in your own life, but you need to pay as much attention to what’s happening around you, and how things affect other people in the world as you do to your own life. It helps to keep things in perspective.
7. There’s No Shame in Not Knowing
No one has it all figured out. Nobody has all the answers. There’s no shame in saying “I don’t know.” Pretending to be perfect doesn’t make you perfect. It just makes you neurotic to keep up the pretense of manufactured perfection.
We have this idea that there is some kind of stigma or shame in admitting our limitations or uncertainly, but we can’t possibly know everything. We all make mistakes and mess up occasionally. We learn as we go, that’s life.
Besides—nobody likes a know-it-all. A little vulnerability makes you human and oh so much more relatable.
8. Love Is More Than a Feeling; It’s a Choice
That burst of initial exhilaration, pulse quickening love and passion does not last long. But that doesn’t mean long-lasting love is not possible.
Love is not just a feeling; it’s a choice that you make every day. We have to choose to let annoyances pass, to forgive, to be kind, to respect, to support, to be faithful.
Relationships take work. Sometimes it’s easy and sometimes it’s incredibly hard. It is up to us to choose how we want to act, think and speak in a relationship.
9. Perspective Is a Beautiful Thing
Typically, when we’re worried or upset, it’s because we’ve lost perspective. Everything that is happening in our lives seems so big, so important, so do or die, but in the grand picture, this single hiccup often means next to nothing.
The fight we’re having, the job we didn’t get, the real or imagined slight, the unexpected need to shift course, the thing we wanted, but didn’t get. Most of it won’t matter 20, 30, 40 years from now. It’s hard to see long term when all you know is short term, but unless it’s life-threatening, let it go, and move on.
10. Don’t Take Anything for Granted
We often don’t appreciate what we have until it’s gone: that includes your health, your family and friends, your job, the money you have or think you will have tomorrow.
When you’re young, it seems that your parents will always be there, but they won’t. You think you have plenty of time to get back in touch with your old friends or spend time with new ones, but you don’t. You have the money to spend, or you think you’ll have it next month, but you might not.
Nothing in your life is not guaranteed to be there tomorrow, including those you love.
This is a hard life lesson to learn, but it may be the most important of all: Life can change in an instant. Make sure you appreciate what you have, while you still have it.
More Inspiring Lessons
- 25 Inspirational Movie Quotes About The Most Valuable Life Lessons
- Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering
- 20 Things You’ll Regret Every Time After Doing
Featured photo credit: Ben Eaton via unsplash.com