An optimistic thread of success beyond the age of 30 has gone viral on Twitter. Last Thursday, Geechee Gordita announced that she was nominated for Forbes‘ “30 Under 30” but missed the age eligibility by four months. “Well y’all, I got nominated for the Forbes 30 under 30 Food and Beverage section, but I am 4 months too old,” she wrote, causing people to denounce age-based lists. Kat Kinsman added to the conversation with her greatest accomplishments, which didn’t occur until age 34.
The tweet erupted a quote-tweet-led thread of successful entertainers, writers, and creatives documenting their big break at their post-30 age. With over 650 quote tweets and 12,000 retweets in the chain, Twitter users felt empowered to add their own story to the mix.
“You’re allowed to feel discouraged, it’s all part of it, but feel it, and move forward with even more ferocity. Fall down, get up and move forward with more power,” Hannah Beachler concluded in her tweet. The Academy Award-winning production designer was 43 when she landed her first breakout production design job on the set of Fruitvale Station. She also noted that she was 50 when she won an Oscar for Black Panther.
With a rise in social media usage comes access to the lives of successful people of all generations, sometimes creating an illusion that we should be as successful and financially stable as the 15-year-old TikTok star parading our newsfeed. Lists like Forbes‘ “30 Under 30” and cover stories that focus on twentysomething success push the idea that accomplishments should happen during youth and not the realistic, logical perspective that success welcomes different ages. As New Yorker staff writer Rachel Syme added to the thread, “Thinking you have to have accomplished xyz by a certain age: a mentality we are leaving behind after 2020, friends. There is no more time to feel you have no more time.”
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