When it comes to pursuing a dream or a goal, you shouldn’t let your age stop you. Author and freelance writer Candis McDow’s story proves that.

After many ups and downs in her personal and professional life, she decided to move cross-country at the age of 35 to accept a job opportunity. Her radical decision to move more than 6,000 miles from Georgia to California took her away from everything and everyone she knew. 

In her 20s, she never imagined leaving her home in Georgia. Her entire family was there, and her mom was her best friend. Years later, when a new opportunity represented itself, a single and child-free McDow realized there was nothing holding her back, which was the confirmation she needed. 

“California represented freedom, independence, courage, and a fresh start,” she explained. “As scary as moving across the country alone was, my optimism surpassed my fears.”

Although making a big move in your mid-30s can feel like a make-it or break-it decision, it’s never too late to bloom. McDow decided to no longer settle in any area of her life. Now, she encourages other women that it’s never too late to pursue a dream.

A Cross-Country Leap of Faith

McDow has been writing since the age of six and has been a full-time freelance writer since 2016. When work began to slow down, she knew her bills were coming whether or not she was getting pitches approved. 

“At 34 years old, I found myself at a crossroads in my career,” she said. “I knew I needed to do something different, yet I had no clue where to start.” 

McDow decided it made sense to look for work outside of writing, while still writing part-time. Based in California, she found a job administering tests to students. 

“There was no way I was passing this opportunity up,” she said. “Although I’d be cross-country and alone, the process was so smooth that I knew it was for me.”

Managing the Fear of Something New 

When making a big move or career change, fear is normal. For McDow, feelings of trepidation didn’t arrive until the day of her move. 

“When I landed in California, everything was smooth until I tried to get my rental car,” she said. “It was an ordeal, and I found myself feeling like a complete orphan – stranded and alone.” 

She was accustomed to calling her mom for everything, especially during times of crisis, but this time, there was nothing she could do. Luckily, her boss was super helpful and supported her in the process.  

Advice on Pursuing Dreams at Any Age

For women in their 20s and older, McDow encouraged that it’s never too late to pursue a dream and to be who you want to be. 

“I believe the most devastating thing in life is living in regret – regretting the things you could’ve done, should’ve done, and would’ve done,” she said. “A dream will literally haunt you until you do it.”

For women considering making a big move or career pivot, McDow advised to just do it. If you have a passion, desire, or feel inclined to try something new, go after it. 

“Don’t let age stop you from reaching your greatest potential,” she said. “You are only as great as you believe you are!”