Like this one, for example:
At this point in my pool journey, I had been playing pool in tournaments for about 23 years.
But, I really only started to improve noticeably and consistently about 3 years before that post on Facebook. A few times over the 20 years I had a good finish here and there, but nothing like the strong, consistent years I had from my "finally" solid pre-shot routine from 2010-2015 and knowledge of the game. In those 5 years, I shyly but proudly admit I was a super star in the leagues I was on - it was pretty cool to see my own game go up so much people were begging me to be on their teams :)
While this second place win wasn't the initial catalyst into the realm of me earning more titles, it DID help catapult me into the winner's circle consistently more often for the next two years to come outside of league.
That second place finish was a position on a Ladies Tour stop I never thought I could be in. And then I ended up the year in 2nd place in the rankings of the OB Cues Ladies Tour! OMG, that was even MORE of a place I never thought I would be in. Just about a year later in March 2014 I DID finally win the coveted title I always wanted to win - BCAPL Singles Texas State Champion. And then in May of 2014, I would become a National Champion. I never, ever dreamed of that possibility! And to top it off, at the beginning of 2015 I earned the "Amateur Pool Player of the Year for 2014" title by Phil Capelle.
I still finished strong in most events I played in in 2015, but by the middle of the year, that was when the thoughts of retirement started to occur.
Check this list out I wrote back in 2011 about the Top Ten Things I wish I knew 10-15 years ago, and DO THEM.
Here's what I know for sure: I LOVE my pool journey. And I actually love that it took me 20 years to be as successful as I was because I learned so much along the way, went to so many tournaments and met a ton of people, gained great friendships and have amazing experiences and memory-makers. However, my advice is to not be like me (lol) and take the long route and have fun for years (and years), but instead start to make the changes you need to make NOW to improve your game faster. :)
(but, if you want to take the long road, I'll be right by your side cheering you on!)