Personal reflections

A rant on being self-made

Made such by one’s own actions; especially: having achieved success or prominence by one’s own efforts. Merriam-Webster

Self-made is when someone who acquires their wealth/success on their own and do not inherit or win it. It takes time and persistence to become successful and if you’ve put in the work then that’s declared self-made. Urban Dictionary

The term self-made is used to describe people who are successful, for a long time I’ve always felt the tag ‘self-made’ didn’t just feel right, it seemed like the word meant the person achieved these feats on their own. I’ve also heard people say there’s no such thing as a self-made man.

On simply checking up the definition I found out that the term was simply the opposite of someone who inherited wealth.

If we defined self-made as the opposite of someone with inherited wealth then that’s fine by me.

On addressing the fact that the term appears to barely alludes to the influence of others on the life of the person who is self-made.

Success = Preparation x Opportunities

If Success is when Preparation meets Opportunity then it’s important to note that Opportunities are attached to people, someone has to give self-made people an opportunity — may be a stranger but still a person. A person or persons help the self-made person achieve their dreams, whether they are paid or not. The word self-made appears to be more focused on Preparation than the Opportunities part of the equation.

I’m less bothered by the use of the term self-made, remember it’s just the opposite of someone with inherited wealth, but I’d prefer a more comprehensive word, any suggestions?


Featured Photo by Mikail Duran on Unsplash

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