When we reach our 50s and are feeling unsatisfied with our current career, it can be all too tempting to give up the dreams of retraining because we don't believe we have the ability to compete with younger professionals.
Particularly in the current financial climate, when every day we seem to hear more statistics concerning graduates who can't find jobs and a fresh batch of eager young minds being churned out of university every summer, it can be somewhat dispiriting to think about your own prospects.
According to journalist Lucy Kellaway, in the next ten years there will be more than one billion young people looking for career options and only 300 million jobs to go around.
But surprisingly, she believes one of the ideal solutions to this situation is for people to take earlier retirement to free up extra jobs for youngsters.
"The young can't advance because everywhere they find my complacent generation is in situ. Thus the only way of solving the problem is to make everyone of a certain age, say over 50, walk the plank," she wrote in an article for the BBC.
"The choice boils down to whether it's better for people to have a decade at the beginning or at the end of their careers where they are demoralised and underemployed. The answer is easy: surely it is better to be more active at the beginning - to have people idle at a time when they are full of energy and their grey-cell count is at a maximum is a shocking waste," she added.
But even if you don't share the same views as Ms Kellaway, it remains a fact that workers from both ends of the age scale tend to face more discrimination in the workplace than those in the middle.
Research from the Department of Work and Pensions earlier this month found that people in their twenties are often perceived to be less friendly, less moral and less competent than more experienced workers, while the survey also revealed that 15 per cent of those asked believe having a boss aged over 70 would be "unacceptable".