On the road to great achievement, the late bloomer will resemble a failure:
While the late bloomer is revising and despairing and changing course and slashing canvases to ribbons after months or years, what he or she produces will look like the kind of thing produced by the artist who will never bloom at all.
Prodigies are easy. They advertise their genius from the get-go. Late bloomers are hard. They require forbearance and blind faith.
– Malcolm Gladwell
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In 2008, Malcolm Gladwell wrote an amazing article for The New Yorker on the Late Bloomer. You can read it here.
In his article, Gladwell describes the lack of support received by Late Bloomers in relation to young prodigies. He even speculates how many Late Bloomers have been thwarted because their efforts have been prematurely judged.
Because Late Bloomers have often had more false starts over the years, and in most cases, have received a minimal amount of support, many of them have thrown in the towel before before they’ve had the chance to see their dreams become a reality. What’s most disturbing, is that many times, it’s not been a matter of if these dreams can be actualized, only a matter of when. The prize is usually right around the corner. The question is, are you willing to wait?
Which brings us to yet another question, “how many people have given up right before it was their time to bloom?”
It makes you wonder.
And while you ponder on that, chew on this comment I found on a botanical website:
Magnolias can take quite a while to come into flower, often around 20 years from seed, but they are definitely worth waiting for.