You know how you sometimes feel like you want to follow another path, another passion, but then you realize you’re old? Well, stop that. Right now.
We know tons of women who have changed direction at all different points in life. Maybe they took a break from the workforce for a few years or they just got tired of the same job day in and day out. Need a change? Ready to reinvent yourself? It’s never too late.
So when we saw this post floating around Facebook in various forms, it struck a chord. (As in the chord in a symphony that makes us sit up and listen. As in the chord in your heart that tells you anything is possible.) So we deleted the famous men and we added a few more brazen women who made their mark later in life.
In case the idea of changing direction has been buzzing in your brain, guess what? It’s never too late to try something new, and we can prove it. Here are 13 women we admire who took their sweet time getting good and famous.
13 WOMEN WHO BECAME SUCCESSFUL OVER 40
At age 23, Tina Fey was working at a YMCA and Oprah was fired from her first reporting job.
At age 28, J.K. Rowling was a suicidal single parent living on welfare.
Phyllis Diller made her comedy club debut at age 37. Club owners told her she was “too old” to make it as a comedian, she persisted, becoming a successful stand-up comic, as well as a film and stage actress.
Julia Child released her first cookbook at age 39, and got her own cooking show at age 51.
Vera Wang failed to make the Olympic figure skating team, didn’t get the Editor-in-Chief position at Vogue. Then she went on to design her first dress at age 40.
Lucille Ball quit school in NYC and modelled under the name Diane Belmont. She didn’t snag the starring role in the hit TV show I Love Lucy until she was 40 years old.
Susan Boyle was a SAHM until her breakout appearance in the final round of Britain’s Got Talent in 2009. At age 48, she landed a record deal and had the largest ever sales debut for a female artist.
Holocaust survivor Ruth Westheimer earned her masters in sociology and figured that was her career. It wasn’t until she was 52 that her speech about the need for sex education programming launched her into the spotlight as Dr. Ruth radio “sexpert” with a quarter of a million listeners per week.
Kathryn Bigelow won the Academy Award for Best Director when she made The Hurt Locker at age 57.
Laura Ingalls Wilder was 64 years old when she decided to share her story with the world and set out to fictionalize her life’s events in the classic Little House series.
Grandma Moses didn’t begin her painting career until—wait for it!—age 76.
Whatever your dream is, it’s not too late to go for it. You aren’t a failure because you haven’t found fame and fortune by a certain age, so stop letting that mean thought into your brain. Hell, it’s okay if you don’t even know what your dream is yet or if you even have one because dreams don’t just appear on demand.
Never tell yourself you’re too old to make it.
Never tell yourself you missed your chance.
Never tell yourself that you aren’t good enough.
You can do it. Whatever it is.