Many of us think that to be successful, you have to be at the right place, the right circumstance and the right age.
But we can learn from those who have come before us, who achieved at every age and in every circumstance of life:
At 5, Mozart was already competent on keyboard and violin.
At 6, Shirley Temple starred in “Bright Eyes.” (After her career as a child star ended, she became a diplomat.)
At 12, Anne Frank wrote her wartime diary.
At 13, Magnus Carlsen became the second-youngest grandmaster in the history of chess.
At 14, Nadia Comneci became the first female gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of 10 in an Olympic event.
At 15, Tenzin Gyatso was recognized as the 14th Dalai Lama.
At 17, Pele led Brazil to a World Cup victory.
At 19, Elvis Presley became a superstar and was later known as “The King”
At 20, John Lennon performed at his first concert as a Beatle.
At 22, Jesse Owens won four gold medals in the Berlin Olympics.
At 23, Beethoven was already known as a piano virtuoso.
At 24, Isaac Newton wrote Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica, setting the foundations for classical mechanics.
At 25, Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile.
At 26, Albert Einstein wrote the theory of relativity.
At 27, Lance Armstrong won the tour de France.
At 28, Michelangelo created his sculptures David and The Pietà.
At 29, Alexander the Great had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world.
At 30, J.K. Rowling finished the manuscript of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
At 31, Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic.
At 32, Oprah Winfrey launched her first talk show.
At 33, Edmund Hillary became one of the first two people confirmed to have reached the summit of Mount Everest.
At 34, Martin Luther King Jr. wrote his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech.
At 35, Marie Curie (along with her husband, Pierre Curie) was awarded Nobel Prize in Physics.
At 36, Wilbur Wright, together with his brother Orville, built the world’s first successful airplane.
At 37, Vincent Van Gogh died virtually unknown after creating the paintings that would later establish him as a major artist.
At 38, Neil Armstrong walked on the moon.
At 40, Mark Twain wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
At 41, Christopher Columbus made landfall in the Americas.
At 42, Rosa Parks refused to obey a bus driver’s order to give up her seat.
At 43, John F. Kennedy became the 35th president of the United States.
At 45, Henry Ford manufactured the first Model T automobile.
At 46, Suzanne Collins wrote The Hunger Games.
At 50, Charles Darwin published The Origin of Species.
At 51, Leonardo da Vinci painted the Mona Lisa.
At 52, Abraham Lincoln became the 16th president of the United States.
At 53, Ray Kroc bought the McDonalds franchise, which then comprised eight restaurants.
At 54, Theodore Geisel wrote The Cat in the Hat under the pen name Dr. Seuss.
At 57, Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger III successfully crash-landed US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River with no fatalities.
At 61, Colonel Harland Sanders granted the first Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise.
At 62, J.R.R. Tolkien published The Lord of the Rings.
At 69, Ronald Reagan became the 40th president of the United States (and the oldest to date).
At 70, Jack LaLanne–handcuffed and shackled–towed 70 rowboats for a mile against strong winds and currents.
At 76, Nelson Mandela became president of the African National Congress.
Whether you’re blessed with the energy of youth or the wisdom of age, whatever your circumstance, you can make success happen. The time to get started is now.
N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
THE LEADERSHIP GAP
What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
Photo Credit: Getty Images
Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.