Start Living NOW!

Betty WhiteIn regards to age: A friend of mine says “we are in the 4th quarter of life”. Depressing much? Another jackass friend of mine says “we have more life behind us than in front of us.” Why do I even get up in the morning? I’ll be dust soon. Bonnie Raitt has a line in a song: “With so much more at stake, Life gets mighty precious, When there’s less of it to waste, Scared to run out of time.

There’s still time. Here’s why.

Samuel L. Jackson (1948-)

Samuel L. JacksonOne of the most prolific actors in history, SLJ holds the world’s record for being the highest grossing actor of all time (he has been in more highest grossest movies than any other actor, i.e. Avengers, Pulp Fiction, Star Wars Ep. 1, all the Iron Man(s), all the Captain Americas – you get the point) with over $4.9 billion total US box office gross, an average of $69.1 million per film. The 2009 edition of The Guinness World Records, which uses a different calculation to determine film grosses, stated that Jackson is the world’s highest grossing actor, having earned $7.42 billion in 68 films.1

Life Starts at 46

Samuel Leroy Jackson didn’t get his first major breakout role (Pulp Fiction) until age 462 and at 69 years old, has acted in over 178 projects and has 10 more upcoming.3 Over 40 does NOT mean over the hill.

Stephen Hawking (1942-2018)

Stephen HawkingArguably one of the smartest men in the world universe, Stephen Hawking included work on gravitational singularity theorems, general relativity, black holes, created the theory of cosmology, and was a leader in quantum mechanics. His book, A Brief History of Time, appeared on the British Sunday Times best-seller list for a record-breaking 237 weeks.

Hawking was a genius from the start but continued to achieve breakthroughs up until 2015, at age 73. All while battling ALS. In a wheel chair. Unable to speak without a mechanical device.

Morgan Freeman (1937-)

Morgan FreemanMorgan Freeman is ranked as the 4th highest box office star with over $4.316 billion total box office gross, an average of $74.4 million per film4

Although his first credited film appearance was in 1971’s Who Says I Can’t Ride a Rainbow?, Freeman first became famous through roles on the soap opera Another World. According to IMDB, Freeman has acted in 123 projects and has 6 more upcoming. He considers his Street Smart (1987) character Fast Black, rather than any of the characters he played in The Electric Company, to be his breakthrough role.5 Repeat that: Breakout film at age 50. At 65, earned his prop AND jet pilot’s license. Not bad for a guy whose great-great-grandparents were slaves. At 81, there is no sign of Morgan slowing down. After all, his film career just started 31 years ago.

Helen Mirren (1945-)

Helen MirrenWon an Academy Award, SAG Award, and 2 Critics Choice Awards at age 62. An Emmy and Golden Globe at age 60. She also won 2 SAG aards at age 56. Add those to the DOZENS of acting awards she won at age 62. The 73 year Dame Mirren starred in 131 projects and has 4 films coming out in 2018.6

Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867-1957)

Little House in the Big Woods, the first of Wilder’s Little House books, was originally published in 1932 when Wilder was 65 and the final book was published when Wilder was 76.7

Raymond Chandler (1888-1959)

Raymond ChandlerPerhaps the most famous mystery ‘noir’ or ‘hard boiled’ writers of the 20th century started off as an unsuccessful journalist and oil executive. In 1939 when he was 51 years old he published The Big Sleep, creating detective Philip Marlowe. Chandler went on to write a total of seven novels before his death. All but one were adapted for the screen.8

Bram Stoker (1847-1912)

While the writer of the iconic novel, Dracula, was published at age 43, he didn’t become successful until age 50 with his classic vampire tale.

James A. Michener (1907-1997)

James MichenerMichener wrote Tales of the South Pacific author (Pulitzer Prize-winning book later adapted into a Broadway musical) after age 40. Then wrote a book a year for nearly 40 years.

Nobel Prizes After 60 Years Old

There are literally hundreds and hundreds of Nobel Prize winners over 60 years old, but here are a few names you may recognize. Physics, Chemistry, Medicine and Economics tend to not have world-famous, rockstar-like, mainstream pioneers. But that doesn’t make their accomplishments, at any age, less spectacular.9

  • Alice Munro (age 82) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 2013
  • Ernst Ruska (age 80) – The Nobel Prize in Physics 1986 – design of the first electron microscope
  • Winston Churchill (age 79) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1953
  • Jimmy Carter (age 78) – The Nobel Peace Prize 2002
  • Bertrand Russell (age 78) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1950
  • Albert Schweitzer (age 77) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1952
  • Nelson Mandela (age 75) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1993
  • Bob Dylan (age 75) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 2016
  • Mother Teresa (age 69) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1979
  • Hermann Hesse (age 69) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1946
  • George Bernard Shaw (age 69) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1925
  • Boris Pasternak (age 68) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1958
  • Yasser Arafat (age 65) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1994
  • Woodrow Wilson (age 63) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1919
  • Samuel Beckett (age 63) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1969
  • Saul Bellow (age 61) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1976
  • T.S. Eliot (age 60) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1948
  • John Steinbeck (age 60) – The Nobel Prize in Literature 1962
  • Anwar al-Sadat (age 60) – The Nobel Peace Prize 1978
  • Albert Einstein (age 42 – I just had to add this one) – The Nobel Prize in Physics 1921

This may be the 4th quarter of the game of life, but there’s plenty of time to win the game. Were the people listed above exceptional? Absolutely. Be exceptional. You have time to do it.


 

  1. Samuel L. Jackson bio – record holder – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_L._Jackson []
  2. Samuel L. Jackson bio – https://www.biography.com/people/samuel-l-jackson-9542182 []
  3. Samuel L. Jackson bio – http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000168/bio []
  4. Morgan Freeman – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morgan_Freeman []
  5. Morgan Freeman – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morgan_Freeman []
  6. Helen Mirren – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helen_Mirren []
  7. Writers over 50 – https://bookriot.com/2014/09/10/8-authors-success-after-age-50/ []
  8. Raymond Chandler – https://www.vivafifty.com/famous-authors-published-after-fifty-694/ []
  9. Nobel Prizes over 60 – https://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/lists/age.html []
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