Words to Thrive By – 04.12.13

Magnolia_Photo Credit: Tom Myler (Flickr)

Magnolia – Photo Credit: Tom Myler (Flickr)

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

* * *

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.


Words to Thrive By – 04.05.13

“Reach high, for stars lie hidden in your soul. Dream deep, for every dream precedes the goal.”

– Pamela Vaull Starr

Julia Child – photo Credit etsy.com

If you want to make your dreams a reality, you first have to have a dream.

At 37, Julia Child (chef, author, TV personality) decided to learn how to cook.

What’s your dream?

And So It Begins…

Greetings to those of you who have waited so patiently for this blog to get up and running!

For my inaugural blog post, I thought I’d share one of my favorite Late Bloomer stories, which still amazes me to this day.

With no more than a sixth-grade education, an aging Colonel Harland Sanders invested in his dream and became one of the most iconic figures of our time.

I may not be a KFC eater (although that mystery gravy is quite tasty), but I am a fan of  the man behind the chicken and his incredible story. Colonel Sanders, like many Late Bloomers, had a whole slew of jobs as an adult, including being an insurance salesman, a steamboat pilot and a streetcar conductor. It wasn’t until he was 40 that he began preparing chicken on a regular basis for others. And it wasn’t until age 65 (after his business had failed) that he used $105 from his social security check to create the Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise!

Today, almost 60 years later, KFC is still a powerhouse worldwide. According to the official KFC site, there are more than 15,000 restaurants in over 100 countries and territories.

After doing a little research, I’ve discovered there is much said about this man (both good and bad); but regardless of his critics, his is an inspirational story about having a dream and the perseverance to make that dream a reality.

Colonel Sanders was at an age when most people would have simply thrown in the towel, slowed down, or quietly faded into the sunset, which I’m sure many encouraged him to do; but Harland did no such thing.

As the Colonel understood, we all have our own unique timelines. Obsessing and comparing ourselves with the young phenoms of the world is a waste of time. That energy is much better spent nurturing our goals.

So, in those moments when you’re beating yourself up, because you feel like you’ve wasted your time and talents, try to remember that every experience contributes to the success that you are to become. And as long as you don’t give up, achieving your dream is possible.

Take a cue from our dear friend, Harland.


Colonel Harland Sanders

Colonel Harland Sanders – photo credit: louisville.com