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How to Find Success and Happiness: How to Hurdle the Age Barrier

I am a graduate of engineering who enjoys writing, public speaking and motivating people to be the best they can be.


Most people envisage a smooth sailing life, but what transpires in reality sometimes deviate markedly from expectations. We must all learn to grapple with this stark reality of life. A typical unsavoury, distressing situation is to hit the age barrier; to have one’s age working against one’s quest for success and happiness.

This could be particularly frustrating and damaging to the psyche, giving the impetus for lethargy and despair. It’s more than frustrating, for example, when one repeatedly misses out on a dream job or other opportunities on account of being deemed too old.

View Age from the Right Perspective

For a bevy of reasons, ranging from the sheer blight of fate to externally imposed limitations and failure to adhere to the key principles that attract success and happiness, not everyone will achieve their goals when still within the ‘ideal age bracket’. For this reason, you should, on no account, allow the age barrier to define what you are able to make out of life. You should neither despair nor become desperate when feeling the pangs of the age barrier; you should rather work towards getting around it.

With the right attitude, one can make an unsavoury and seemingly intractable situation like the age barrier to work to one’s advantage. According to Epictetus, ‘Men are disturbed not by events, but by the views which they take of them’. It’s unhealthy, therefore, to become obsessed with or attach too much importance to age. In fact, age should be deemed nothing but a number; it should not be allowed to become a limiting factor in your quest to find fulfillment.

That said, for those who are wise and remain resolute in the pursuit of their dreams, life should be like wine that tastes better with age. The great Christian Apostle Paul opined: ‘When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things’ (1 Cor. 13:11 KJV).

The experiences you have hitherto garnered in life should make you wiser and place you in a better position to do things better, avoid pitfalls and handle challenges with calm and optimism. You should always allow this assertion to resonate with you if you want to make the most out of life; it’s a lofty state of consciousness that will help you to break the age barrier.

Be Ready to Take a Detour

It’s a bad attitude to think that you are past your sell-by date; it’s, in fact, a grave mistake. Admittedly, the age barrier could work against you in some situations, but, without your approval, it can never abort your dreams and aspirations.

When the age barrier brings a certain dream or aspiration of yours to a dead-end or shuts down a coveted course, you should always take solace in and draw inspiration from the fact that there are many noble, credible pathways to success and happiness.

Consequently, in the quest for a happy and successful life, what really matters is to find a way to your prized destination. As you journey through life, it will sometimes become necessary to take a detour in order to make further progress. This could entail venturing into something entirely different or devising new strategies.

For the avoidance of doubt, barring any serious health issues, one’s intellect should not deteriorate with age; it should never be in want of good, quality ideas. If you can't get your dream job, for example, you should work, with enthusiasm, any available job that will add value to your life; better still, you can venture into business. By so doing, you will be making a great decision that will give your life an amazing transformation, instead of inadvertently compounding your own woes bemoaning your lot or wasting your time flogging a dead horse.

The inspiring narratives of people who were only able to succeed late on in life are testimonials to the fact that, as long as one is still alive, it can never be too late to achieve one’s dreams and aspirations.

You will be enthused by the story of the legendary Colonel Harland David Sanders, the founder of the multinational franchise Kentucky Fried Chicken, whose life featured many twists and turns before he eventually made imposing, indelible footprints on the sands of time.

Born in 1890 in Kentucky, USA, he worked many jobs in his early years, including as a lawyer and a brief spell in the military, before making a foray into business. He had some successes along the way, but he was only able to achieve his major breakthrough when he was 65. He died at the age of 90, a millionaire. He remains the symbol of the company he founded till this day.

It’s Never too Late to Pursue Your Dreams and Aspirations

Moreover, you should not deem age a barrier to living life to the fullest, aspiring to something new, taking advantage of opportunities to grow and develop yourself, pursue your lifelong dreams and new-found interests, boost your chances of success and enjoy doing what you love. For instance, one’s quest for fulfillment and new-found interests could make it necessary for one to go back to school.

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One should not allow one’s age to work against this kind of noble pursuit. It does not matter if one has to take classes alongside teenagers or preteens; and neither should the age one will attain upon graduation be an issue, as one will still get older anyway.

The Nigerian elder statesman and former President Olusegun Obasanjo, for example, obtained his post graduate diploma at the age of 73; his master's degree at 80; and his doctorate at 82. This teaches us a great lesson that at no age should one feel awkward or too powerful to learn or seek better recognition.

Be Filled with Goodwill

Another way of getting around the age barrier is to achieve one’s goals ‘by proxy’. If one cannot achieve a goal on account of age or other issues, it’s a good idea to help or encourage people who are eligible to accomplish that goal. This is an important element of goodwill that should not be overlooked in the quest for fulfillment, as it has momentous benefits, both psychological and material.

For example, it’s every right thinking parent’s dream to have their children fare better than and support them in life. It’s this passion that drives parents into making massive investments in their children, while some will even go all the way to steer them towards a cherished cause or course.

But one’s goodwill should not be restricted to family and friends alone. It should be extended to all and sundry through charitable causes like giving scholarships, offering grants, mentoring and so on.


John Macleans (author) from Lagos on October 25, 2021:

Thanks a million times for your encouraging comment.

John Macleans (author) from Lagos on October 25, 2021:

You're absolutely right; many thanks for your insightful comment.

John Macleans (author) from Lagos on October 25, 2021:

This is more than awesome, many thanks for this comment. It'll stick with me for the rest of my life.

Sara Param from London on October 25, 2021:

I fully agree with your thoughts!

Preye Raymond from Nigeria on October 24, 2021:

“It’s a bad attitude to think that you have already past your sell-by date; it’s, in fact, a grave mistake. “

A lot of people are held back by this mindset. They set an age limit for everything because they compare themselves to others, and they follow societal pressure that stipulates that “you must finish from school at a certain age” , “you must be successful at a certain age” or “have a family at a certain age”.

Which in reality, it is not the case, there just made-up thoughts people live by mostly because they try to imitate others who they feel are doing it right...

MG Singh emge from Singapore on October 24, 2021:

Age is a number and one must accept it and savor the fact the setting sun is as beautiful as the rising sun.

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