We live in a world that idealizes the accomplishments of the very young. Look at this 14-year-old founder! Look at this mogul who established an empire while in college! We love stories of people doing larger than life things before age 25. It can leave you feeling like a failure if you’re 30 or older and haven’t conquered the world.
No disrespect to those superstars that walk among us, but they are the exception to the rule. For the vast majority of us, success comes after years and years of work. It takes dedication and time to make it to the top.
Here are five stars that climbed to the top of their respective industries only after years of work. They didn’t give up, and now everyone knows their names. Don’t give up if you’re 27 and don’t have a million dollar net worth yet. Success comes to those who work their asses off. If these people had given up, the world would be poorer for it.
One of the most iconic actors of all time, Bogart didn’t land his first role as a leading man until 1941, at the age of 42. Bogart made his stage debut in 1921 in the US. He worked in B films and on stage for twenty years before he was offered his first Hollywood blockbuster.
Britton worked consistently in Hollywood for years. She had arcs on popular tv shows like ‘Spin City’ and ‘The West Wing’, but she was never the star. It wasn’t until she was 39 and landed the role of Tami Taylor on ‘Friday Night Lights’ that Britton became a household name.
Now one of the most sought after designers in the world, Wang found success after years in the fashion industry. She started work at Vogue immediately after college and stayed for 17 years. She was passed over for the editor-in-chief role and worked at Ralph Lauren for two years. At 40, she started her own bridal wear line and became the Vera Wang we all know today. She’s been at the top of bridal wear for the last 27 years.
Oxford is an author and personality who started blogging anonymously. She wrote online for years while as working as a waitress and in retail. She built a large Twitter following, and at age 34 was named one of Time magazine’s top Twitter feeds.
After that, she wrote and published a best-selling book, sold a tv pilot, moved to LA and has seen her career skyrocket. She moved, quite literally, from the shadows to center stage in her mid-thirties.
Samuel L Jackson
Jackson is one of the most prolific actors in Hollywood. He has appeared in hundreds of films, mostly in small roles. Jackson’s star-making role came when he was 45, with Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction.’
For Jackson, acting is work the same way any other job is work. He told Rolling Out magazine “When I was a kid, all the adults in my house got up and went to work every day. I assumed that’s what grown people do. That’s what I do.”
Don’t beat yourself up if you’re 30 and haven’t found huge success yet. It’s never too late to reach your peak. Keep working at it!