Sat | Jan 25, 2020

Editorial | The unlikely– Jaime’s story

Published:Saturday | January 11, 2020 | 12:08 AM

The unlikely story of a 58-year-old man launching a modelling career could well provide the inspiration which many people may need to take bolder steps towards their goals this year.

Amid the gloom of threats of war and multiple killings comes the story of Jamaica-born Jaime Melbourne, two years shy of his 60th birthday, who has gone into modelling. As reported in this newspaper, Melbourne, who lives in the United States, is a new find for the local Saint modelling franchise.

Even if one is not really interested in the celebrity world, when one flips through a magazine or stares at a billboard, traditional images presented are usually of young, nubile goddesses and Grecian-like gods. But with people like Jamie getting into the game, the look is changing into something less conventional and hardly predictable. It is obvious that fashion today is not simply a young person’s game.

NO CUT-OFF DATE

Now, for those who are thinking that there is a cut-off date for starting a new career or business, here is a man starting something new. We believe this could offer optimism to those struggling with the idea of undertaking a new venture or fulfilling a lifelong dream.

And yes, it can be a scary prospect to consider a new career after turning 50. There is likely to be some fears and insecurities and even questions about whether one’s health will hold up or whether one will be successful.

The fact is that many people who started careers late in life have been successful. History demonstrates this amply. We can think of Daniel Defoe who wrote his first novel, Robinson Crusoe, at age 60, and Harland Sanders, the famous colonel of Kentucky Fried Chicken, who founded his wildly profitable franchise at age 65.

NEVER TOO OLD

It’s easy for adults to think they do not really need role models or that inspiring figures are demanded by children only. However, that is not the case, for career inspiration can help adults, too. Even though there are scientific methodologies which involve tests to determine what careers are best suited to an individual, it sometimes takes just that one role model to provide the motivation for them to take a dare.

Appropriately, this is the time of year when persons set down their goals and aspirations. For those who may need a little motivation to take that step, the message being reinforced here is that one is never too old to follow one’s passion, gain new knowledge or pursue that dream career.

In an ideal world, we may not be advocating looking to an ageing model with lots of grey hair as an inspiration, but in this new decade we anticipate that more and more people will have to create job opportunities for themselves, as fewer industries are offering opportunities for people of a certain age.

So whether it is in modelling or some other creative industry, the impression that needs to be countered is that ageing is a drawback to continuing development. For some, it could be a hugely daunting task, even with driving ambition, to pluck up the courage to change gears. It’s inspiration from people like Jamie that could make the difference.