Successful People Vs Unsuccessful People

Traits of Successful People

I found the following infographic on pinterest recently. It suggests qualities that successful people have compared to those who are unsuccessful. I think it makes some valid points about how our circumstances depend a lot on how we approach life. 🙂


Success can often to a subject term. Even within the context of personal finance, becoming successful can mean different things to different people. There are as many definitions to success as there are goals and aspirations. Our objective is to discover what our version of success looks like, and figure out how to get there.

For me, success comes in the form of financial freedom and to have enough assets to provide for myself and the people I care about in perpetuity. I plan to achieve this goal by growing my investment portfolio over time. 🙂


Random Useless Fact:

This is how people accidentally poison their entire family.


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11/14/2015 6:13 am

What/who is the source of the list? It’s garbage. If my goal was to be a highly unsuccessful person, then I could achieve it by doing everything on the right hand column…and I’d be successful.

There need only be a single item on both sides of the ledger: achieves/does not achieve goals. Jack the Ripper and Bin Laden were just as successful as Gandhi and the Dalai Lama (or Buffet and Gates).

Your goal is to grow your investment portfolio over time, your success of financial freedom et al is a direct result of fulfilling that goal.

If a person bearing all of the “unsuccessful people” traits won the lottery (aka achieved financial freedom), would they be successful or unsuccessful?

Anon #2
Anon #2
11/14/2015 10:33 am
Reply to  Anon

The lottery winner would just blow all the new found winnings and be back to where he/she starts thus again back to their former “success” status.

11/14/2015 1:39 pm
Reply to  Anon #2

That sounds a like a know-it-all criticism — two “unsuccessful” traits!
(Any concrete figures to support your prediction?)

If their goal was to win the lotto, then they are 100% successful.

11/15/2015 7:25 am

I don’t think you can nullify/discount any achievement simply because it didn’t adhere to some pop psychology self-help schematic. Luck, and those things we can’t control, might have a far greater influence on our success than we’d like to think.

Take the “success” of the USA, basically a ‘right place at the right time’ story, and one that will never be repeated. Thus, if it can’t be replicated, then chaotic chance and luck had much more influence than subscribing to an aribtrary list.

As well, no where on that list is mentioned the work ethic and dedication actually required in order to acheive the goal.

Dividend Growth Investor
11/15/2015 2:39 pm

Hi Liquid,

I think that this list is interesting. However, I could poke some holes in some of the arguments on unsuccessful people. Let’s imagine I am Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart.

You bet I would secretly hope that Sears and Kmart fail.

You bet I would hoard information, and make sure my plan to build the stores to gain scale, to monitor inventory in real time, and to prospect for new locations. I would not disclose information on best selling items, or I would keep a secret on where I will open a new store, in order to prevent from paying top dollar for land.

You beat I will hate change – if another type of retail store could offer more items than mine, and can afford to operate at cost, and its items will not be subject to sales, I would not compete as well. The other place is called Amazon, though it was not started until 3 years after I was gone.

I do agree however about almost everything else from the list on successful people.
Best Regards,


11/15/2015 3:39 pm

Not only that, but the success of Walmart is based solely on the unsuccessful trait of “operating from a transactional perspective”. ?