Nia M Wardani | A Logbook of Life Discoveries

Michelle Yeoh - How to Survive A Fall and Takes The Leap for Your Success



It was 20th of May 2024, the Indonesian National Awakening Day, when I came across a video about Michelle Yeoh. It was a short video by Goalcast, celebrating her success in the film industry as she won the Oscar in 2023.

After watching the video, I noticed that there is something special about this person. Then I dig in for more information. The more I dig, the more I am inspired by her actions and personality.

Reading her story and listening to her speeches, there are so many encouragements I personally acquired. That, yes, you are never too old to pursue your dreams.

The Encouraging Life Story of Michelle Yeoh

I first noticed Michelle Yeoh, in her performance in the film Crazy Rich Asian, as Eleanor, the ambitious mother of the rich Young family. She really shows how powerful a woman she is in that role. But in fact, Michelle had already acted in so many movies, most of them action movies (which is not usually my favorite genre to watch). She partnered with Jackie Chen, Chow Yun Fat, Pierce Brosnan, and other great actors.

Beyond her role as a strong powerful woman in the movies, her life stories intrigued me even more.

The young Michelle was a promising ballerina. At a very young age, she went from her hometown in Malaysia to London to pursue her dream. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately, because else she will not become the best actress in the 2023 Oscar), she suffered from a spinal injury that stopped her from being a ballerina.

But, Michelle didn’t fall into depression. She knew that she must channel her energy to something else. So, she went to Hong Kong and pursued acting. Her dream is to become equal to the men. She was very competitive, especially with Jackie Chan. She learned kung fu. She did dangerous stunt action. She worked so hard for her roles.

However, back in the day, actresses were not expected to do ‘men’ stuff, like mastering martial arts. They were limited to co-act as the attractive that would be saved from the villain by the male hero. Michelle tried to challenge this idea. Of course, she got so much resistance from people, especially as she grew older and older. People told her to retire, but she refused to do so.

That’s why, it is such encouraging news that Michelle won the 2023 Oscar for her acting in Everything Everywhere All at Once. She was 60 years old when she received the award. Absolutely not a young age. In her speech, she said, “Ladies, don’t let anybody tell you, that you are past your prime.”

Michelle Yeoh, is not only the best at her acting career, but is also an inspiring person. She did many social works, in the UN, World Bank, and other nonprofit organizations. She encourages people, young and old, women, and minorities, to strive for their dreams.

Michelle Yeoh’s Advice on How to Survive The Fall

During the Harvard Law School Graduation Ceremony in 2023, Michelle Yeong delivered a heart-warming speech. She gave 3 advice to the graduates, but I believe that those advice should also be heard by all people around the world.

1. Stay Loose

Staying loose will give you “freedom to make choices” to opportunities outside your box. Remember when Michelle suffered from a spinal injury? Rather than falling into despair, she chose to look for opportunities outside her box.

2. Know your limits

“Limits set by yourself give you boundaries to respect.
Limits set by others give you boundaries to bust through.”

Michelle constantly faced limitations as she progressed in her career. These limitations, however, encouraged her to push through.

3. Find your people

Most of the time, reaching success is more about collaboration than competition. Find the people who can support you. Michelle said, that her success is due to the support of so many parties involved in her life. Not only families but also coworkers and any people who have crossed paths with her.

Despite her political views, I respect her for her persistence and hard work. Michelle Yeoh has proved that gender and age are not the limits to success. And most importantly, Michelle teaches us how to embrace a fall in our lives. She said, ”Learning how to fall, teaches you how to land. Learning to land, gives you the courage to jump higher.”

Nia M Wardani
Hi! Call me Nia. I am a former teacher with ten years of teaching experience. I left formal teaching and found my peace through private tutoring, blogging, and gardening. My mission is to help other teachers improve their lives. Let's get in touch through my Instagram @nmwardani

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  1. From her we can learn an important thing. That is to keep our spirit to get opportunity and to make achievements.

  2. masha allah ya, belajar dari secuil perjalanan hidup michelle yeoh, ketika mengalami cidera, dia tidak berlarut-larut dalam kesedihan, justru mengalirkan energinya ke hal yang positif. Semoga saya tidak salah memahami ya mbak, cukup butuh pemahaman tinggi bagiku, baca artikel inggris begini. Inspiring pokoknya

  3. aku selalu kagum dengan perempuan-perempuan yang memiliki pencapaian pencapaian yang menginspirasi, mereka teguh dan berprinsip sampai mimpinya tercapai

  4. Michee Yeoh ini ternyata pemeran cracy rich asian ya mbak, baru tahu saya.. nice article

  5. Bangga banget kalo ada wanita yang bisa memperjuangkan kesetaraan gender seperti Michelle Yeoh ini. Beliau mampu membuktikan bahwa meskipun kita wanita, kita bisa seperti laki-laki yang lebih dipandang kuat. Beliau juga bisa menunjukkan pada kita semua, bahwa usia bukanlah penghalang untuk mencapai kesuksesan.

  6. Saya selalu salut dengan para perempuan yang masih mau belajar, berjuang, dan berkarya di usia yang tak lagi muda. Sosok Michelle Yeoh ini baru saya tahu dan sanbat menginspirasi. Bahwa setiap perempuan bisa memperjuangkan impiannya meski telah berusia lanjut.

  7. Salah satu artis Asia yang bisa bertahan di dunia Holywood. Ternyata perjalanan hidup dan karir nya banyak yang bisa dijadikan pelajaran.


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