Is it ever too late to follow your dream? I was on Radio Hereford and Worcester recently. The discussion was – “Is it ever too late to follow your dream?”. This followed on some research  that the majority of teenage girls want to be popstars, film stars or athletes and will expect to have 3 careers. I was pleasantly surprised that for 20% they want to be politicians, it’s not only about being famous. The discussion then moved on to dreams we had when we were young – our teenage ambitions and what we wanted to do when we grow up.
The presenter Toni McDonald asked me: Is it ever too late to follow your dream? My answer:
No – it’s never too late to follow your dream but we need to think it through
You can listen to the recording here


What were your dreams as a child or young person?
Did you want to be an Actor, Artist or Architect? But did your parents, teachers and friends tell you no. Did they say it would be an imposibility to get the work – but some people are successful and why not you.  We can stay firm with our dreams for so long but the constant tap of negative and unsupportive comments can be hard to overcome.
Did you take the sensible option as you absorbed these messages? Many people I work with put their dreams to one side and settled.
There’s nothing wrong with settling. But is it right for you? When we are young it can be good to aim for what we really want to plan to follow our dream, and give ourselves a deadline. We can then aim for our plan B. Perhaps something with some connection to what we really want. Or we can make sure we have time to follow our dream for example, our art, in our spare time.


I’ve lots of examples of people who followed a new career path, often a dream in their 50s and beyond. People such as

  • Heidi Rasmussen – Retailing Executive to Health Care Entrepreneur
  • Kenny Thacker – Construction Worker to Co-Owner of Beer Hound Brewery and Brewmaster
  • David Harris – VP of a tech company to Owner of Timberline Adventure Tours
  • Kaye Stone-Gansz – Executive at Xerox to Owner of a gravel pit
  • Vicky Lewis – High-tech Program Manager to Owner of Mazama Coffee Company
  • John Bialk – Rental Property Manager to Inventor of Quietyme, a noise detector
  • Louise Mann – Sales Manager for a Realty Firm to Co-Owner of Wash Day Laundromats

and my favourite – Barbara Knickerbocker-Beskind. In January 2013, Barbara saw IDEO founder David Kelley speak on 60 Minutes about the importance of cultivating a diversity of experience among team members developing new products and services. Barbara wrote to the company, offering to help IDEO design for aging and low-vision populations. At age 89, she began working for IDEO in  and has been directly involved with client projects related to contact lenses, health care delivery, and retirement home services.


Often this could lead to a drop in income so you will want to make sure that you are financially secure. Most people who make a radical change will clear the mortgage first.
You may feel the training would be too long to follow your dream and be an Architect or Lawyer, or you really are too old to be a ballet dancer, but what is there similar to your dream that you could do. If you get stuck, this is where a career coach, particularly one who specialises in working with people at 50+ can help.

You also need courage and support.

It can be a bit scary – stepping into the unknown, and not being sure if you will be successful or not if you decide to follow your dream. What helps is to have friends, and a career coach who will help you but it’s not just about being a cheer leader. It’s about doing research. Talking to people who do thew job you want, finding about the routes into the job. If you plan to retrain, make sure the course will actually lead to the outcome you want. Don’t rely on the training company/ University – they want your money, being successful in their job search isn’t their focus.
If you want to talk with someone on how to Follow Your Dream get it touch and let’s see how we can make it happen?
Brought to you by Denise Taylor. Award winning career coach with Amazing People and Chief Inspiration Officer at The 50Plus Coach.

Published On: April 21st, 2017 / Categories: Career Discovery /

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