It's rather common to go through phases of insecurity in your career where you feel like you're not good enough and you have some doubts.
However, as Elvin Ng turned 40, he has become more self-assured and he knows that he has earned his stripes as an actor in local showbiz. And in case anyone has forgotten, Elvin has been in the industry for 15 years.
Speaking to 8Days, he explained that his role in the new drama Mister Flower helped him become more confident.
"Initially [when I got the role, arrogant landlord Gao Yufei], I was wondering if it was going to be some super self-confident and arrogant person. It was very tough for me at first, but I absolutely grew into it, and I found a part of me internally that was very proud [just like my character] and I could bring out the arrogant and self-confident side of him better.
"I think filming this show has made me so much more confident as a person, and as an actor as well. It's like, I deserve to be here, everyone's looking at me, and I deserve it," he said.
Elvin added: "In my thirties, I was still fighting very hard, climbing the slope and wanting to prove myself, not only to people, but to myself mainly. So I think right now, it's not that I have nothing to prove. But now, I'm more sure and I am certain. There were too many question marks and uncertainties last time, and I feel better about many things now."
The veteran actor has also accepted the fact that he's being typecast as the typical nice guy, though he has thought about shrugging off the label. He told 8Days that this acceptance came after he asked a "respected director" how he could break out of the mould.
In turn, the director asked why would they cast Elvin in a different role like he asked and whether the actor thinks it would work for him.
"People have certain impressions and roles that they want to cast you in, so I think there's no need to try too hard to be different. [In the end] I can only follow, and [regardless of] whatever roles I'm given, I will do my best," Elvin explained, adding that he thinks the real question now is "Why do you have to try and break out of that?".
That said, Elvin is also open to trying out new characters, new genres, and even to go beyond acting.
"It'll be nice if I can be some crazy guy, some pervert, or a girlish guy, things like that. Or anything that's varied. Like, to work with external productions, to work in Taiwan and China, and to do different genres. I'd even like to try singing, theatre, and dance."
He added: "I hope to do more fashion too. After Mister Flower, I thought, why am I not doing more fashion-related stuff? I want to open myself up and show that I can be more of a fashion person.
"I always thought previously that fashion was not so much for me because I was always the guy next door, always in classic suits. But there's a part of me that's a little bit more edgy, that wants to be different. So now, I want to show more sides of myself."
And though turning 40 can be a scary time — after all, we all know many friends who freaked out when they hit 30 — to Elvin, it's the "best decade" of his life.
"Initially, right at the stage when you're turning 40, it's scary because it feels like it's the second half of your life. But my friend told me that it's the best decade of a man's life, and now that I've already crossed the barrier and been welcomed into the club, it feels like a fresh beginning, and I feel better and happier than ever before," he shared.