- Mental Health
Life as a late bloomer: How to succeed as a late bloomer?
Are you a late bloomer? Do you find yourself less successful than all your friends? Are your interpersonal and social skills not at par with everyone else you know? How will you succeed as a late bloomer? What are the things you need to do to be happy in life if you are a late bloomer?
Find answers to all these questions, and many more in this practical post that peaks into the psyche of a late bloomer. Children, teenagers and adults – All are welcome to read, relate, learn and improve.
Who is a late bloomer?
From a psychological and a relatively scientific approach, the term late bloomer is often associated with adolescents and adults alike, who develop at a pace slower than their peers. From a practical and real life perspective, late bloomers are individuals who take longer than the average joe to showcase their full potential in terms of talents, abilities, skills and physical/mental maturity amongst other areas of their personalities.
Late bloomers should not be confused with people with learning disabilities. The modern day image of a late bloomer could very well be associated with a person of all or some of the below characteristic traits.
- Late bloomers don't generally achieve financial and career related success until much later than their peers.
- Lack of self confidence could push a person into a shell, causing him/her to refrain from developing interpersonal and personality skills in life, leading to 'blooming' later than others.
- There is absence of direction and focus in life. A late bloomer may not know what he/she wants to do in life until late twenties, thirties or even beyond.
- Late bloomers may find social interaction daunting simply because of an incorrect perception that others are superior to them.
- Such individuals could find control and confidence in their physical appearance at much later stages of life.
- Late bloomers may have maturity levels which are deemed lower than average as compared to their friends and colleagues.
- People with extra ordinary talent often find themselves as 'different from others'. If they fall into the trap of putting themselves down, their skills and talents could take longer than usual to meet the eye.
How to succeed in life as a late bloomer?
One of the beauties of being human is that we are all different individuals with absolutely unique personality traits, emotional quotient, intelligence levels and psychological approach. The key to succeeding as a late bloomer is to be happy in your own skin and more importantly, evolve as a unique personality. As ambiguous as it sounds, lets break it down into the things that you can do to overcome the barriers of being a late bloomer.
1) Stop worrying about your past
A daunting past could be a heavy load on a late bloomer's shoulders. When higher levels of maturity and understanding of life in general are achieved, it is common for someone to look back at their immature antics, decisions and behavior in general and go "Gee I can't believe I did that"
In such situations, bad memories which are a result of immature behavior can cause a lot of emotional turmoil. If you are in a similar trap, the quicker you learn how to stop worrying about your past, the faster you will be able to move on.
Stop ruining your present because of your past – After all, today is going to be your past tomorrow. Do you really want to keep worrying today and add to your worries of tomorrow? Of course not. Accept the idea of 'What's done, is done and there's nothing you can do about it except learn and move on'
2) Stop being jealous of others: Your friends, classmates or colleagues
If you are a late bloomer, chances are that your peers have surpassed you and achieved success quicker than you. We are all human and it is impractical to ask someone to not be jealous at all. But the least you can do is to stop jealousy from hurting you on an emotional and psychological level.
Don't feel disappointed if you see your friends/colleagues at a place where you'd want to be yourself. Rather, look at their lives and think of the things that they did to be where they are right now. Beware though, don't fall into the trap of imitating someone's behavior or personality. Just observe their strengths and think of how you can use your observations to benefit your own self.
If used positively, jealousy can be a great source of inspiration and motivation. "If he can, why can't I?" and "If she can, why can't I?" are the type of questions that may stem from jealousy, but could result in a superior motivational boost like no other. If you are a late bloomer, use your observation skills and convert jealousy into a driving force for your success.
3) Learn from past experiences: Use hindsight as your top learning tool
Experience is the greatest teacher, said someone, and rightly so. All our lives are based on the foundation of experience and subsequent learning. For a late bloomer, the understanding of 'what makes the world go round' may come much later than usual.
If this sounds like you, it's important to remember that while you have not learnt from many of your experiences yet, squeeze out every drop of hindsight and learn from your past experiences. Some of the things you can do to make your learning quicker are
- Reflect on past experiences and think 'What could I have done for a better outcome?'
- Think about how others behaved in certain situations
- Reflect on the opportunities that you have missed in life and more importantly, engrave in your mind the things you need to look out for, so you don't miss opportunities again
- Analyze crunch situations that you may have faced, identify your shortcomings and work overtime to fix them
- Don't let bad memories weigh down upon you – Think of them as your tutor and remember the things that you should and shouldn't be doing
4) Acceptance of self: It's ok to be different
One of the first things that may come to the mind of a late bloomer is "Why am I different than others?" This thought can work against such individuals and push them into a shell which is a result of lack of confidence. And we all know what happens when there is lack of confidence in a typical school/college/office environment – they may be sidelined, made fun off, mocked or even humiliated.
If you think that you can relate to this, remember that it is absolutely okay to be different. If it weren't for people who were 'different than others', the world would have not had the likes of Steve Jobs, Kristen Stewart, Richard Branson, Dalai Lama, Pablo Picasso, Albert Einstein, Arnold Schwarzenegger and many more of iconic personalities who are inspiration to millions across the globe.
5) Focus on your skills, talents and abilities: There's no looking back now
Do you have a special talent that no one else has? Do you have a skill that is unique? The answer to these questions could be YES for something as simple as being able to memorize faster than others to being able to play the guitar better than anyone you know.
For many late bloomers, life may seem ironic because they had loads of talent but just didn't have the right frame of mind and self confidence to showcase it. Does this sound like you? If it does, you must remember that it is never too late to focus and start building up on your strengths, talents and skills. It is not unusual for a late bloomer to eventually find focus in life and overtake his/her peers. Don't you want to look at people who doubted you, in the eye, as they stare at you in awe of your success?