I really don’t get that shit. Seriously.
In todays society, people over 50 should just retire and wait peacefully to die. Thats it. They had their chance to roll and now they have to make room for the new generation to thrive. They don’t understand this new world after all. So, if you are 50 or more, take a long vacation and prepare for the unavoidable.
REALLY ? I MEAN. REALLY ?????
Fuck no! Don’t let them make you believe that. Its a another freaking selling lie. Today at 50, you have 30 if not more years of healthy life in front of you. And with modern medicine, who know whats gonna happen.
A 50 years old dude, 50 years ago was an old guy. Literally. At 25 you were supposed to have a “real” job, 2,5 children, a mortgage and a dog.
Fast forward now to today. That’s not the case at all. Just take a look at any 50 year old dude around you. Does he look old ? Of course not. Does he look tired. Well, that depends.
Technology and modern lifestyle dragged people decades back in age. When i was a kid, 35-year-old men where really old. Old in the inside.
Look at me now. I’m 36 and i’m doing my own thing. Back then i would be a failure. No “real” job in my resume.
The Music Industry Party
Heres the deal.
Me, coming from a “music business” background i have seen this again and again. In music industry, you can’t just start at 50. You are not acceptable at that age if you are not Sting or Roger Waters or you know, someone who started at an early age and has been around for that long.
The recipe is quite clear. You have to be young, have a great body, a sharp shinny smile and maybe a good voice. This is fucking broken. Music is not football mother fuckers. You can sing and write music until your death day if you wish.
The Startups Party
And again, now with startups. Every fucking founder in the Silicon Valley dreamland has to be 25 or under. At 40 or 50, you have to have 5 companies under your belt to be qualified as an entrepreneur. The level of discrimination here is off the roof. And don’t let me start on women — age — entrepreneurship. Thats a whole different story.
What if i was a freaking accountant for 30 years and now I want to create a business on an idea i had, or a passion i got into over the years. Think of all the value a 50 year old dude brings to the table just because he has been around for 50 years. Life produces wisdom you cant buy suckers. Period.
But no. Startup-land is for kids only.
And if you think about it, the only thing that youth brings to a business is freshness (of mind and body), energy (usually consumed pointlessly) and enthusiasm. Don’t get me wrong. These are some awesome values to have, but when you are young everything else has to do with inexperience and impatience. Maybe the two most important pillars of business failure.
I get the point. If you decide to start your first gig at 50, you must be a looser. If you want a music career at 50, you are just a weird old man.
I also get the point that if a 50–60 years old dude hits a party of teenagers, he would be immediately spotted as that weirdo.
But who sends the invitations for the Startups or Music industry parties?
Things are quite different here
For music industry the ageing discrimination is ordered by the entertainment industry in general. What I’m saying is that since TV and the rest of traditional media sell easier and at a higher value the image of a young man/woman, thats what the music industry will be looking for. Otherwise they wont be able to sell. It’s that simple.
Of the other hand, the Startup ecosystem was produced from the misfits of the “regular” business cycle back in the day. People that could not imagine themselves in a cubicle for 40 hours or more a week. Those people were quite young then, since the risk of taking you own path in life, is much less when you are in your youth. People with families, mortgages and other responsibilities wouldn’t take the leap that easily.
But today, that is not the case at all. More and more people feel like technology can help them go after their dreams. At any fucking age. I’ve met some 70 and 80 years old entrepreneurs you wouldn’t believe your own eyes.
And then it’s “Older people don’t get technology” argument. Thats a freaking lie. Try to tell that to my mother who is now a WhatsApp expert since her grand daughters photos are in there. Try to tell that to every grand mother who are now invading Facebook by the thousands since their grand-children are there.
All people need is a reason to learn technology. Yes, takes more effort for an old guy to learn the new stuff, but that’s just normal. And people do co-found companies all the time. You don’t even have to be the tech guy anymore.
Why a startup can’t be founded by three 50-years-old guys ?
Why a band of 50 years-old women can’t start writing and publishing awesome music today ?
If you have one legit answer to those questions, i would love to hear it.
So, heres the bottom line.
Shut your eyes and ears. Do what you Love. You only live once and nobody can tell you what you should or shouldn’t be doing. Follow your dreams and passions. Surround yourself with people who support you and make you a better version of yourself. Kill negativity in any form.
ps. Here’s an awesome video from the great Gary Vaynerchuk on that same subject.