+
upworthy
Identity

A woman requested inspiring middle-age success stories, and the internet delivered—big time

There's nothing magical about "making it" in your younger years.

success, middle-age, success stories, life, dreams, aspirations

It all can happen at just the right time.

Media outlets love to compile lists of impressive people under a certain age. They laud the accomplishments of fresh-faced entrepreneurs, innovators, influencers, etc., making the rest of us ooh and ahh wonder how they got so far so young.

While it's great to give credit where it's due, such early-life success lists can make folks over a certain age unnecessarily question where we went wrong in our youth—as if dreams can't come true and successes can't be had past age 30.


Weary of lists celebrating youngsters, television writer and producer Melissa Hunter sent out a tweet requesting a new kind of list for 2020. "Instead of 30 Under 3 or NextGen lists," she wrote, "please profile middle-aged people who just got their big breaks. I want to read about a mother of 2 who published her first novel, a director who released their first studio feature at 47, THAT'S THE LIST WE WANT."

The Twitterverse responded with a resounding "YAAASSS." Story after story of folks finding success in their 40s, 50s, and beyond began pouring in. If you worry that you're not far enough along in your 20s or 30s, or think it's too late for you to follow your passion in the autumn of your life, take a look at these examples of people crushing it in their mid-to-late adulthood.

Take this mother of four teens who released her first full-length book at 45 and started law school this year at age 47.

Or the woman who published two books in her late 50s and is revising book #3 at age 60. Oh, she also started running at age 45.

Another person shared how they got out of prison for drugs at age 49, stayed clean and started their own business, and broke the $1 million sales mark last year at 56.

"Lauching my clothing line now—at 48," wrote a mom of two. "Next venture feels amazing."

Another user chimed in with "Yes! Plus the 40 under 40, 30 under 30 can be quite contrived (sometimes). I want to see people juggling school, career, and family.”

Yet another mother of two teens finished her PhD at 41 and got a tenure-track position at age 47. She's also working on a book on Indigenous Early Childhood.

How about this woman who hadn't taken a math class for 40 years? She aced her statistics classes and will graduate with a perfect GPA after she turns 60. "Lots of life to live!" she says.

Another mom (are we seeing a theme here?) discovered a passion for interior design and won a national TV design challenge in her late 40s. Now, at 60, she has a successful design career and contributes to radio and magazines.

Of course, we also know there are fabulously successful folks who got a "late" start in Hollywood, including the incomparable Ava DuVernay, "who left her job at age 40 to focus on filmmaking and then became the first black woman to make over $100 million at the box office.”

As one man pointed out, "The idea that you've got five years between 20 and 30 to do everything you're ever going to do is ridiculous." Hunter agreed, writing, "The advice is always that it's a marathon, not a race, and I wanna read about the people who finished that marathon!!"

So many stories of people publishing their first books, landing their ideal jobs, or discovering a passion later in life just kept coming, and person after person shared how inspiring and motivating they were.

Of course, not everyone has lofty career goals. If these stories aren't quite hitting the mark for you, check out this woman's contribution to the conversation. She's "just a regular human," she says, but she went to Zimbabwe and volunteered at a wildlife refuge at age 47. "Life doesn't just peter out after 30," she wrote. "My friend Elsa is 96 and went on an archaeological dig at 75. I want to be like her."

Don't we all.

Age really is just a number, and there's nothing magical about "making it" in your younger years. Let's be sure to celebrate people living their best lives and making dreams come true at any and every age.


This article originally appeared on 01.10.20

Florida teacher Yolanda Turner engaged 8th grade students in a dance-off.

We've said it before and we'll say it again: Teachers deserve all the kudos, high fives, raises, accolades, prizes and thanks for everything they do. Even if they just stuck to academics alone, they'd be worth far more than they get, but so many teachers go above and beyond to teach the whole child, from balancing equations to building character qualities.

One way dedicated educators do that is by developing relationships and building rapport with their students. And one surefire way to build rapport is to dance with them.

A viral video shared by an assistant principal at Sumner High School & Academy in Riverview, Florida shows a group of students gathered around one student as he challenges a teacher to a dance-off.

Keep ReadingShow less
Education

Popular philosopher shares the one way to know someone is a true genius

They have a skill that separates them from the merely talented.

Albert Einstein and William Shakespeare.

What separates people who are geniuses from those who are merely talented? German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer (1788 - 1860) explained the difference: "Talent hits a target no one else can hit. Genius hits a target no one else can see."

Popular TikTok philosopher Juan de Medeiros further explained Schopenhauer’s views on genius in a video that has been seen over 200,000 times.

"Essentially, what he meant is that true genius is when you can do or see things that other people can't even conceive of,” de Medeiros explained. “It's like a genius is often doing something before his time has come; will often only be recognized after his death. Someone who is talented is very good at doing something that other people recognize as being important. Whereas a genius is someone who has the vision to foresee that which will become important in the future."

Keep ReadingShow less

The gaze of the approving Boomer.

Over the past few years, Baby Boomers (1946 to 1964) have been getting a lot of grief from the generations that came after them, Gen X (1965 to 1980), Millenials (1981 to 1996), and now, Gen Z (1997 to 2012). Their grievances include environmental destruction, wealth hoarding, political polarization, and being judgemental when they don’t understand how hard it is for younger people to make it in America these days.

Every Baby Boomer is different, so it's wrong to paint them all with a broad brush. But it’s undeniable that each generation shares common values, and some are bound to come into conflict.

However, life in 2023 isn’t without its annoyances. Many that came about after the technological revolution put a phone in everyone’s hands and brought a whole new host of problems. Add the younger generations' hands-on approach to child rearing and penchant for outrage, and a lot of moden life has become insufferanble.

Keep ReadingShow less
Representative Image from Canva

Some troublemaker named Conor got a little tough love this year for Valentine's Day.

It’s Valentine’s Day, and that means parents will be sifting and sorting through piles of cutesy cards. Most will probably contain the standard fare—a sweet cartoon character, some candy, a nice message.

But then again, kids do say the darndest things, and you never know when that candidness will pop up to deliver some grade-A comedy.

For a woman named Nisarah, it happened when her daughter decided to create handmade cards for her classmates. Let’s just say…one stood out among the rest.
Keep ReadingShow less

A wise woman shares her thoughts on "perfection."

As the ancient proverb says, “Brevity is the soul of wit,” but communicating big, essential ideas clearly and concisely is also a great indicator of wisdom. In a world awash with information, the ability to take a complex idea and turn it into simple, understandable statements is a true gift.

Succinct, bite-size pieces of wisdom are also a way to help people remember what’s truly important. As theologian François Fénelon once said, “The more you say, the less people remember."

The ability to communicate big ideas simply, reveals the level of understanding one has on a subject. Albert Einstein once said, “If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."

In an attempt to collect some of the pithiest bits of wisdom known to humankind, a Reddit user named Upset-Document-8399 posed a big question to the AskReddit forum: “Wise people of Reddit, what's a one-liner pearl of wisdom you know?”

Keep ReadingShow less
Representative image from Canva

A birth clinic with facials? Now that's luxury.

When I say “picture a birthing clinic,” you’re likely to imagine all white rooms and hospital beds…not luxury suites and spa vibes.

But the latter was what Nicole Patrice, who had moved to Japan from Kentucky and underwent a c-section at the Nagoya Birth Clinic, where her husband purchased a 5-day stay in the “precious suite” as a Christmas gift.

Her tour of the facility and all its next level amenities—not to mention its price—left viewers in shock.

Keep ReadingShow less