Achieve success by adopting the habits of self-made millionaires: learn practical strategies for financial and personal growth.

How You Can Achieve Success with the Habits of Self Made Millionaires

Jun 28, 2024

By Will Moore

The path to achieving your dreams begins with the choices you make each day. Self-made millionaires understand this fundamental truth - their fortunes weren't built overnight but through consistent habits and mindsets cultivated over time.

Did you know that 88% of self-made millionaires read at least 30 minutes each day? This statistic might surprise you, but this fact shows just how important good habits are for success.

Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder of Facebook, makes time to read even though he has a very busy schedule, making sure he stays on top in his field. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, constantly looks for new things to learn and improve. Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft, always seeks more knowledge and works on having a positive mindset.

By adopting the habits of self made millionaires, you can achieve financial success and personal growth. This blog will guide you through the key habits that have helped me and propelled these figures to extraordinary success and provide practical strategies to implement these habits in your life.

Reasons That Are Stopping You from Becoming a Millionaire

1. Flood of Information and Resulting Confusion

In "Atomic Habits," James Clear highlights how too much information can be paralyzing. When faced with an overwhelming amount of choices, our ability to make decisions diminishes, leading to inaction.

This phenomenon, known as decision fatigue, can prevent us from taking the first steps toward our goals. For many, the sheer volume of available self-help content creates a cycle of constant searching and little actual doing, perpetuating a state of stagnation.

2. Short-Term Focus

We are constantly encouraged to seek immediate rewards, whether it's through social media, fast food, or quick-fix solutions. This focus on short-term satisfaction hampers meaningful progress and personal development, making it challenging to stick to long-term goals.

Our brains are wired to prioritize immediate rewards over future benefits. This biological inclination makes it difficult to resist temptations that provide instant pleasure, leading to habits that are detrimental to our long-term goals.

3. Fear of Failure and Avoidance

A fixed mindset, where individuals believe their abilities and intelligence are static, can lead to fear of failure and avoidance of challenges. This mindset results in procrastination, analysis paralysis, and a tendency to quit at the first sign of difficulty. Overcoming this mindset is essential for personal growth and success.

The fear of failure is deeply rooted in our psychology. It stems from the belief that failing at a task means we are inherently incapable. This fear can be so paralyzing that it prevents us from even attempting to achieve our goals.

Adopting a growth mindset—where we view failures as opportunities to learn and improve—is crucial for overcoming this paralysis. This shift in perspective allows us to embrace challenges and persist despite setbacks, fostering resilience and continuous improvement.

4. Generic Advice and Lack of Personalization

Self-awareness is critical for personal growth, yet it is often lacking in generic self-help advice. Generic advice does not take into account individual differences in personality, lifestyle, and goals.

In the book "Atomic Habits," James Clear stresses how crucial it is to customize habits to fit your unique situation. Without this kind of personalization, it's hard to stay motivated to adopt and stick with new habits.

5. Fear of Change

Success is linked to change because it requires adapting to new opportunities and challenges, driving personal and professional growth.

Change is inherently uncomfortable because it involves stepping out of our comfort zones and facing the unknown. This discomfort is compounded by the need for self-reflection, which can reveal unpleasant truths about our behaviors and beliefs.

Read More: How to Change the Way you Think

"The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance," said Alan Watts.

6. Poor Spending Habits and Financial Instability

Impulsive spending, lack of budgeting, and failure to save for the future are common issues that hinder the ability to build wealth and achieve financial security.

Poor spending habits are often driven by the same need for instant gratification that affects other areas of life. Spending money can provide a quick emotional boost, but it often leads to long-term financial problems. Having an emergency fund to cover unexpected expenses can prevent financial instability and reduce reliance on high-interest credit cards or personal loans.

Building good financial habits requires creating systems that make saving and investing automatic and easy. By establishing these systems, individuals can avoid the pitfalls of impulsive spending and work toward greater financial stability.

15 Habits of Self Made Millionaires that You Need to Adopt

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1. Debt Avoidance

Self-made millionaires prioritize reducing and eliminating debt. They avoid paying unnecessary interest on consumer credit, such as credit cards. Paying off credit card balances in full each month and avoiding store credit cards with high interest rates is essential. Additionally, having disability insurance is crucial to protect against financial instability caused by unexpected health issues.

Here’s How You Can Build The Habit Of Avoiding Debt:

  • Create a budget to monitor spending and identify areas to cut back.

  • Use cash or debit cards to limit spending to what you can afford immediately.

  • Learn about personal finance through books and courses like “Total Money Makeover” by Dave Ramsey.

2. Multiple Streams of Passive Income

Self-made millionaires explore various avenues, such as investments, side businesses, or passive income streams, to build wealth. Participating in employee stock purchase plans can also be a beneficial way to build additional income streams.

Here’s How You Can Build Multiple Streams Of Income:

  • Evaluate income opportunities and plan monthly.

  • Research opportunities that align with your skills and goals, such as investments, freelancing, or starting a side business.

  • Develop a plan to allocate time and resources toward building additional income streams.

  • Learn about different income opportunities through books, courses, and online resources.

3. Living Below Their Means

Self-made millionaires regularly review their budgets, ensuring that living expenses remain lower than their income. Regardless of their annual salary, they focus on managing it to facilitate growth through saving and investing effectively.

Here’s how you can build the habit of living below your means:

  • Set a specific time each month to review your budget and track your spending.

  • Visualize the financial stability and growth that come with living below your means.

  • Create a detailed budget that outlines your income and expenses, and identify areas where you can cut back.

  • Focus on needs over wants and prioritize spending on essential items and savings.

  • Use budgeting tools and apps to monitor your finances and stay on track.

4. Learning from Mistakes

Rather than mourning failures, self-made millionaires extract valuable lessons and apply them to future plans. Resilience and adaptability are key traits.

Here’s How You Can Build The Habit Of Learning From Mistakes:

  • Keep a journal to document successes and failures, and reflect on what you can learn from them.

  • Adopt a growth mindset and view challenges as opportunities for development.

  • Seek feedback from trusted mentors, colleagues, or friends to gain insights on how to improve

5. Daily Reading

Reading is a common habit among self-made millionaires, providing them with continuous learning and personal growth. It not only broadens their knowledge but also stimulates innovative thinking and keeps them updated on industry trends. Many successful individuals, including Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, attribute a significant part of their success to their voracious reading habits.

Mark Zuckerberg is well-known for his disciplined reading habits. In 2015, he set a personal challenge to read a book every two weeks, which led to the creation of his online book club, "A Year of Books." This initiative aimed to promote reading and intellectual growth, and Zuckerberg publicly shared his reading list to inspire others. He selected and discussed a total of 23 books throughout the year.

Here’s How You Can Read Daily:

  • Set a specific time each day for reading, like before bed or during your lunch break.

  • Start with 10-15 minutes if 30 minutes feels too long. Gradually increase the time as you get more comfortable.

  • Choose books that genuinely interest you and are recommended by trusted sources.

  • Read books related to your goals: for financial success, try "Rich Dad Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki; for personal growth, consider "Atomic Habits" by James Clear; for health and fitness, try "The 4-Hour Body" by Tim Ferriss.

  • Use a book-tracking app or join a book club to stay motivated and monitor your progress.

  • Create a quiet, comfortable spot for reading to help you focus and make the habit more enjoyable.

6. Setting Long-Term Financial Goals

Setting long-term financial goals is a critical habit among self-made millionaires, driving them to persist through challenges and stay focused on their vision. They understand that significant achievements require a clear, strategic plan and unwavering commitment.

Elon Musk’s success with SpaceX and Tesla is rooted in his long-term vision. Do you know that SpaceX was on the brink of bankruptcy after its first three launches failed? Most people would have given up, but not Musk. He believed in his long-term vision of making space travel affordable and sustainable. Despite the setbacks, he secured additional funding and kept pushing forward. The fourth launch was a success, which led SpaceX to become a leader in space exploration.

Here’s How You Can Set Long-Term Goals:

  • Each week, review and plan your goals, such as on Sunday evenings.

  • Visualize the benefits of achieving your goals, like financial stability and personal satisfaction. Imagine the freedom and opportunities that come with reaching your long-term objectives.

  • Write down your long-term goals and break them into smaller, actionable tasks. For example, if your goal is to save a certain amount of money, outline how much you need to save each month.

7. Quick Decision-Making

Quick decision-making is a vital habit for self-made millionaires, enabling them to seize opportunities and maintain momentum in their endeavors.

Warren Buffett, one of the most successful investors in history, is known for his ability to make quick, effective decisions. He famously decided to purchase a stake in GEICO after a single weekend of research. His effective decision-making allowed him to seize opportunities that others might miss due to hesitation or over-analysis.

Read More: What are Some Psychological biases that Act as Barriers to Effective Decision Making?

In "Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman, the importance of quick decision-making is highlighted through the concept of "System 1" thinking—our brain’s fast, automatic, and intuitive way of processing information. Successful individuals often rely on this type of thinking to make swift, effective decisions when time is of the essence.

Here’s How You Can Make Decisions Quickly

  • Recognize situations where a decision needs to be made. This could be at work, during personal projects, or when opportunities arise.

  • Think about how swift decisions can lead to faster outcomes and less stress.

  • Practice the two-minute rule: if a task or decision can be made in two minutes or less, do it immediately. For more significant decisions, set a specific time limit for making your choice to avoid overthinking.

8. Habits Personalization

Habits personalization refers to the process of tailoring habits to fit an individual's unique preferences, lifestyle, and circumstances. This customization ensures that the habits are more relevant, manageable, and sustainable for the person adopting them. I call these habits Golden Habits.

By personalizing habits, individuals are more likely to stay motivated and consistent, making it easier to achieve long-term behavioral change and desired outcomes.

Oprah Winfrey is a prime example of someone who understands her strengths and tailors her habits to maximize productivity and well-being. Oprah credits much of her success to her self-awareness and the ability to align her daily habits with her personal goals and values. She knows what works best for her, from her morning meditation routine to her structured workday, which allows her to stay focused and energized.

Here’s How You Can Tailor Your Habits

  • Set regular times for self-reflection, such as in the morning or evening.

  • Visualize benefits like improved productivity and satisfaction from aligning habits with strengths.

  • Use personality tests, journals, or feedback to gain insights and adjust habits to fit your strengths and values.

  • Create a dedicated self-care space for activities like reading or meditation to help maintain your habits.

9. Simplifying Your Habits for Success

Simplifying tasks and breaking down big goals into manageable steps is a crucial habit for achieving long-term success.

Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, attributes much of his success to his ability to break down big goals into small, achievable steps, ensuring consistent progress without becoming overwhelmed.

Here’s How You Can Simplify Your Tasks

  • Identify a large goal or task that feels overwhelming. Break it down into smaller, actionable tasks.

  • Visualize the satisfaction and success of completing this goal step by step. Think about how breaking it down will make it more manageable and less stressful. For example, if your goal is to write a book, set a daily word count target.

Read More: What are Some Ways you can Take Initiative to Achieve your Goals?

10. Financial Management

Effective financial management is crucial for building and maintaining a substantial net worth and achieving financial independence. It involves disciplined habits that help individuals like Sara Blakely, founder of Spanx, grow from humble beginnings to successful entrepreneurs.

Sara Blakely, a self-made billionaire who started her company with $5,000 in savings, demonstrates the significance of strong financial habits. Her journey from a door-to-door fax machine salesperson to the owner of a billion-dollar empire highlights how meticulous financial planning can pave the way to extraordinary success.

Here’s How You Can Improve Your Financial Habits

  • Create a detailed budget using a budgeting app like Mint or YNAB to track your income and expenses. Break down your spending into categories and set limits for each one.

  • Set up automatic transfers to your savings or investment accounts, ensuring consistent savings without manual effort.

11. Networking

Building a strong network is essential for personal and professional growth, as highlighted by successful entrepreneurs like Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group. Networking with millionaire clients can provide valuable insights and opportunities for financial planning and wealth-building.

Richard Branson credits much of his success to his ability to make strong networks, emphasizing the importance of surrounding oneself with positive, like-minded individuals who offer support, advice, and opportunities.

Here’s How You Can Build the Habit of Networking Effectively

  • Attend industry events and conferences to meet new people, aiming for at least one networking event each month.

  • Connect with individuals who share your interests and goals through platforms like LinkedIn. Personalize your messages to show genuine interest.

  • Follow up with new contacts within a week and schedule regular check-ins to maintain communication.

  • Offer value to your network by sharing useful information, providing assistance, or making introductions.

12. Daily Self-Care

Arianna Huffington, the co-founder of The Huffington Post, learned the hard way about the importance of self-care. After collapsing from exhaustion and breaking her cheekbone, she realized that success at the cost of personal health is not truly sustainable. Huffington now prioritizes sleep, meditation, and personal well-being, advocating for a balanced life through her book “Thrive.” Ensuring self-care is essential not only for personal health but also for building a stable financial future.

Here’s How You Can Build the Habit of Daily Self-Care

  • Begin with 5 minutes of meditation to your good morning routine and gradually increase the time. Incorporate activities like a short walk, reading a chapter of a book, or writing in a journal.

  • Create a dedicated space for your self-care routine. Whether it’s a cozy corner for reading or a quiet spot for meditation, having a designated area can help you stick to your habits.

13. Generosity

Generosity is a cornerstone of success for many self-made millionaires. By giving back to the community, individuals can build strong relationships, enhance their reputation, and create a legacy of kindness and compassion. Generosity can lead to unexpected opportunities, personal growth, and a deeper understanding of the world. Wealthy people often practice generosity and give back to their communities.

Chuck Feeney, the co-founder of Duty-Free Shoppers Group, is known for his incredible generosity. Feeney has given away over $8 billion to various causes, significantly improving lives worldwide. He famously said, “I had one idea that never changed in my mind—that you should use your wealth to help people.”

Shifting focus from getting to giving—putting others’ interests first and continually adding value to their lives—ultimately leads to more substantial personal and professional rewards.

Here’s How You Can Build the Habit of Practicing Generosity:

  • Start with small acts of kindness. Offer your time, skills, or resources to those in need. For instance, help a colleague with a project, mentor someone, or contribute to a local charity.

  • Make generosity a part of your daily routine. Look for opportunities to help others throughout your day, whether it’s through small gestures or significant contributions.

  • Surround yourself with generous people. Engage with individuals who inspire and encourage acts of kindness and philanthropy.

14. Growth Mindset

A growth mindset is crucial for long-term success. This mindset views talents and abilities as developable through dedication and hard work. It encourages continuous learning, resilience, and the willingness to face challenges. Individuals with a growth mindset can overcome obstacles, adapt to changes, and achieve personal and professional growth. The average millionaire exemplifies this mindset by consistently seeking opportunities for growth, learning from failures, and maintaining disciplined habits over time.

Howard Schultz, the former CEO of Starbucks, transformed a small coffee shop into a global brand. Schultz attributes much of his success to his growth mindset, a concept popularized by psychologist Carol S. Dweck in her book “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.” Schultz believes that the ability to embrace learning and development, rather than seeing talents and intelligence as fixed traits, has been pivotal to his success.

Here’s How You Can Build the Habit of Fostering a Growth Mindset:

  • Identify fixed mindset triggers. Recognize moments when you feel challenged or face setbacks and notice any negative self-talk or doubts about your abilities.

  • Practice reframing challenges as opportunities. When you encounter difficulties, consciously remind yourself that these are chances to learn and develop new skills.

  • Seek feedback and learn from it. Instead of fearing criticism, view it as valuable information that can help you grow. Ask for feedback regularly from colleagues, mentors, or friends.

  • Surround yourself with people who have a growth mindset. Engage with individuals who encourage learning and development and who can provide support and inspiration.

15. Effective Time Management

Effective time management is really important for achieving success. Self-made millionaires understand the importance of valuing their time and prioritize tasks that align with their long-term goals. This approach ensures productivity and efficiency, allowing them to focus on high-impact activities and reach their objectives. Effective time management is a crucial step towards achieving millionaire status by enabling consistent progress towards wealth-building goals.

Andrew Tate, a successful entrepreneur and former kickboxing champion, attributes much of his success to his rigorous time management practices. He meticulously plans his day to maximize productivity and achieve his goals.

Tate starts his day around 9 am by checking his phone and responding to messages to stay updated with overnight events that might impact his business. He then drinks 2 liters of water and begins his workout routine, ensuring he maintains both physical and mental fitness. His afternoons and evenings are dedicated to his business endeavors, often working up to 17 hours a day. He typically stays up until 3 or 4 am, getting around six hours of sleep each night.

Tate’s disciplined approach to time management highlights the importance of structuring one’s day around high-priority tasks, maintaining discipline, and optimizing productivity.

Here’s How You Can Build the Habit of Effective Time Management

  • Identify and prioritize critical tasks using tools like the Eisenhower Matrix.

  • Allocate specific time blocks for focused work, meetings, and personal time.

  • Use planners to organize your schedule and stay on track.

  • Focus on one task at a time to enhance efficiency and work quality.

  • Review your daily accomplishments and plan for the next day.


Achieving success like self-made millionaires involves adopting consistent, intentional habits that drive growth. Key habits include avoiding debt, living below their means, fostering a growth mindset, and daily reading. Setting long-term goals, managing time effectively, building strong networks, and personalizing habits to align with strengths is crucial.

Remember, success is built on small, consistent steps that build momentum. Embrace these habits, stay resilient, and seek continuous learning and growth. Start today with one habit and watch incremental improvements lead to significant achievements.

Are You Ready to Adopt the Habits of Millionaires?

By adopting the success habits of self-made millionaires, you can turn your goals into reality. Begin with small, manageable steps, and use the Weekly Habit Tracker App to make it fun and rewarding to hold yourself accountable.

Incorporate new habits into your daily routine and watch your progress build momentum. The Weekly Habit Tracker App is designed to gamify your habit-forming journey, making discipline an enjoyable and seamless part of your day. By tracking your progress and celebrating your wins, you’ll find yourself eagerly returning to the app day after day, reinforcing your positive actions and accelerating your growth.

Why Use the Weekly Habit Tracker App?

  • Simple and User-Friendly — This app is designed to be intuitive and easy to use, ensuring you can focus on your growth without any hassle.

  • Fun and Gamified — Turn your habit-building process into a game. Earn points, unlock achievements, and compete with friends to stay motivated.

  • Rewarding — Experience the joy of tracking your progress and reaching your milestones. Small wins add up to significant results over time.

  • Personalized — Tailor your habit tracker to fit your unique goals and lifestyle. The app adapts to your needs, ensuring a customized experience.

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What do 90% of all millionaires become so through owning?

According to various studies, 90% of all millionaires become so through owning real estate. Investing in property provides a stable and appreciating asset, which contributes significantly to wealth accumulation. Additionally, owning rental properties can generate passive income, offering multiple streams of income and reducing the risk associated with a slowdown in one income stream.

How to build wealth and become a self-made millionaire with no money?

To become a self-made millionaire with no money, start by educating yourself on financial literacy and personal development. Focus on building skills that are in high demand, create a budget to save money and invest wisely, and look for opportunities to generate additional income streams. Networking and finding mentors can also provide valuable guidance and opportunities.

Secret habits of millionaires

Millionaires often share secret habits such as waking up early, maintaining a positive mindset, engaging in regular exercise, and practicing mindfulness or meditation. They also value networking and building strong relationships, which can lead to new opportunities and collaborations.

10 things millionaires do not spend money on

Millionaires typically avoid spending money on:

  1. Unnecessary luxury items

  2. High-interest debt

  3. Frequent dining out

  4. Expensive cars

  5. Trendy fashion

  6. Impulse purchases

  7. Lottery tickets

  8. Unused subscriptions

  9. Excessive entertainment

  10. Overpriced technology

Self-made billionaires who were poor

Many self-made billionaires started with humble beginnings, including:

  1. Howard Schultz (Starbucks)

  2. Oprah Winfrey (Media Mogul)

  3. Larry Ellison (Oracle)

  4. John Paul DeJoria (Paul Mitchell)

  5. Ralph Lauren (Fashion Designer)

Which two habits are most important for building wealth and becoming a millionaire?

  • Consistent learning

  • Discipline

What is the daily routine of a millionaire?

  • Early morning start

  • Exercise

  • Planning

  • Work blocks

  • Learning and development

  • Networking and meetings

  • Evening reflection

What is the lifestyle of a millionaire?

  • Balanced living

  • Continuous growth

  • Financial prudence

  • Quality relationships

  • Philanthropy


Will Moore is a gamification, habits and happiness expert.

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