1. They almost always work harder than most people
2. They are almost always self-employed
3. They almost always know what to work at and have a knack for what to pay attention to
4. They almost always figure out how to stretch themselves by hiring others, they have employees
5. Only a few become rich by being significant profit centers as individuals... some doctors, brokers and lawyers, inventors etc.
6. Many are not outwardly well off, they save what they earned because they worked very hard for it. It goes away much more quickly than it comes in.
7. Some are obsessed by money, these are the ones who are often crooked. Obsession often has no out of bounds markers.
8. Some are very honest and respect the possessions of others.
9. I seriously doubt many self-made people have 30+ hours a week for leisure. Their days are often two part... 10 to 12 hour days out and about an hour or two to decompress and then 2 to 4 hours of odds and ends, self-education, planning etc. Nobody pays these self-employed people for their training or planning retreats like corporations do.
10. They work harder than they would for a corporation or someone else but they also have more freedom but in some ways less.
Each morning the self-employed person has to get up, look in the mirror, brace himself with a mission and a pep talk because if he does not go out and kill something this day he and his family will not eat. He pays for every slack day he is not able to keep pushing.
For the most part, if a person is wealthy or successful and began with all but nothing he has earned his place.
In what used to be the United States, if you were not well off it was because you didn’t try hard enough.
That is a good list.
My late wife’s Uncle was a good example of a self made millionaire. He was definitely a one percenter but not even close to a billionaire.
His most outstanding personality trait was likeability. He was very careful with his money but wasn’t afraid to invest it either. He was honest with his business dealings but was willing to cheat on his taxes etc. Unlike some, he was very smart.
I remember one thing which probably defines him as well as anything. He and several of his partners and friends were regularly invited to Las Vegas where they were put up for free, had free transportation and so forth.
After a few years he got taken off the list. The reason? He was not doing any gambling.