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Super Model Maye Musk: How I Stay at the Top of My Game


At 71, Maye Musk is a fashionable, jet-setting international supermodel but lists her greatest achievement as raising her three innovative and successful children—Elon, Kimbal and Tosca. Things were not always so easy or glamorous for Musk. She became a single mother at 31 and struggled through poverty to provide for her children; dealt with weight issues as a plus-size model and overcame ageism in the modeling industry. She ultimately established a lifelong career as a respected dietitian, while starting over in eight different cities across three countries and two continents. But she made her way through it all with grace and an indomitable spirit.

In her new book, A Woman Makes a Plan, Musk shares experiences from her life, conveying hard-earned wisdom on career (the harder you work, the luckier you get), family (let the people you love go their own way), health (there is no magic pill), and adventure (make room for discovery, but always be ready for anything). She calls this period the “prime of her life.”

1. Your life has not always been so glamorous. What is your secret to success?

My secret to success has been hard work and doing the right thing. No matter how many times I was abused, insulted and ignored, I kept on getting out there until I found a better life.

2. At 71, you are definitely changing the age stereotype. What is your advice for staying current?

My advice for staying current is to not worry about your age. Dress fabulously, try different styles, cut your hair into a trendy look. It will always grow back … and try different makeup.

3. What are your thoughts on ageism in our society? Can we change to a more positive viewpoint?

We definitely have to change our viewpoint on aging. It’s great to be 71 is my current hashtag, and I expect to say the same at 81 and 91. Women need to support each other, and men need to support women. You shouldn’t limit your success because people are telling you you are old. You don’t need those people in your life.

4. The title of your book is “A Woman Makes a Plan.” How should women of a certain age continue to plan for a future of purpose and passion?

Women of all ages should continue to plan for a future of purpose and passion. You need to look forward to every day and improve on your life through educating yourself, sharing your knowledge and experiences, feeling confident and relevant, and contributing to society.

5. What else do you hope readers will learn from your journey?

I hope readers will see themselves in some of my stories, and realize they need to make a plan to improve their lives. They may be stuck in an unhappy personal or business relationships. Make a plan quicker than I did. Why Not? You can always return to your miserable former life. Change is scary, but you need to make a plan to change your situation. Enjoy!

Musk says that you can’t control all that happens in life, but you can have the life you want at any age. All you have to do is make a plan.

Click here to order “A Woman Makes a Plan.”

This Q&A was featured in the January 12th edition of The Sunday Paper. The Sunday Paper inspires hearts and minds to rise above the noise. To get The Sunday Paper delivered to your inbox each Sunday morning for free, click here to subscribe.


Susan Pascal is editor of The Sunday Paper. She lives in Los Angeles with her two kids.

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