Three Traits of Every Self-Made Millionaire


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In my latest book, Change Your Habits, Change Your Life, I highlight the three common traits of every self-made millionaire. Here they are:

  1. Daily Growth
  2. Focus
  3. Persistence

What’s most interesting about these three traits is that they are inherent in every individual. Everyone is born with them. Unfortunately, very few ever unleash these in-born traits. Our education system has a way of suppressing them. By the time most young adults finish high school, these traits are in full retreat, replaced, instead, by a reprogramming that turns off their entrepreneurial fire and forcing them to, instead, redirect their efforts towards securing a job. That reprogramming typically instills in our children the mistaken belief that the purpose of education is to help them find a solid job after high school or prepare them for college so that they can pursue some career job. In short, our education system programs our kids to be an employee, rather than an entrepreneur or business owner.

But, while these in-born traits are suppressed in most, they never actually go away. They resurface whenever you pursue something you are passionate about. In my research, I saw this re-birth first hand. Many of the self-made millionaires in my study followed the same time-worn imprudent educational system reprogramming – finding a job or pursuing a career.

But somewhere along the line, these traits begin to resurface. Many of the self-made millionaires started their side hobby or side business while working full-time. It was always something they were passionate about, something that they loved doing. When they engaged in that side hobby or side business more and more, they began to feel alive for the first time in their lives. They soon became fanatic about learning everything they could about their passion. This fanatical desire to learn more turned on the focus switch. Once that focus switch was turned on they found themselves engaging in their passionate side-hobby or side-business every day. Now emotionally committed to their passion on a daily basis they let nothing stand in their way. Every obstacle became something to be overcome. Every mistake became a learning experience. Their desire to overcome those obstacles and learn from those mistakes gave birth to the persistence trait. They soon found themselves persistently pursuing their passion on the side, all while working full-time. All three traits: Daily Growth, Focus and Persistence, joined together, like a symphony. Over time, their side hobby or side business eventually began to make money. The more they pursued their side hobby or side passion, the better they became at it and the more money they began to make. Once their passion made them enough money, they quit their full-time job and pursued their passion full-time until, one day, they looked back and realized they were rich.

What I learned from my research is that you will almost never become a millionaire following the employee-centric path programmed into you by the education system.  You must pursue something that inspires you, that you are passionate about. The money, the wealth, is just a byproduct of enjoying what you do. It’s almost a secondary consideration, getting rich, when you are engaged in your passion. Doing what you love breaths life into these three in-born traits: Daily Growth, Focus and Persistence. Release your inner success traits today. Find something you love. Devote just 20 minutes a day to it. In time, it will transform your life.

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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