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3 Main Ways to Make a Million Dollars

Making a million dollars is a very tempting goal.

How realistic is it? How to make a million dollars? What are the main ways to make a million dollars? There are a lot of misconceptions about that. Let's check some facts to reveal the real situation.

How realistic is it for you to become a millionaire?

Firstly, let’s check the percentage of millionaires.

How many people managed to become a millionaire?

Credit Suisse published a report which states that there are 33 million people with their wealth of more than $ 1million.

Some other researches quote a much greater number of millionaires. This difference is due to the fact that not everyone is willing to expose his wealth.

I've decided to consider the number of millionaires to be roughly 35 million. Let’s compare that with 7.6 billion of the overall population of the planet. It denotes that the percentage of millionaires is roughly 0.5%. In other words, 1 person out of 200 is a millionaire.

Of course, it means that becoming a millionaire is quite a challenging task. But it is realistic too.

Also let's not forget that it depends on the country where you live. For instance, 41% of all the world's millionaires are living in

the USA. Therefore, if you live there, your chances of becoming a millionaire are much greater than the percentage given above.


Self-made Millionaires VS Inherited Ones.

How many millionaires are self-made, and how many have inherited their fortune?

How to save million dollars

Here, the data is quite optimistic. Different researches state that the majority of the millionaires are self-made. About 70-80% of the millionaires earned their million dollars themselves.

By the way, these figures are now much better than they were, let's say 50 years ago. Therefore, you should be grateful for the time in the history that you are living. Nowadays your chances to become a millionaire are better than ever.

Now we're coming to the most interesting part: how to make millions, starting from nothing?

We'll discover 6 main ways of earning a million dollars. Also, we'll see which ways are surer and easier than the others.


Way #1 – Start Your Business

If you look at the richest people on the planet, you'll see that with rare exceptions most of them are entrepreneurs.

In the US, the self-employed people make up less than 20% of the workforce. But they comprise a whopping two-thirds of the nation's millionaires, according to Stanley.

The downside of starting a venture is the high level of risk. Data reveals that 80% of new start-ups fail within the first year of existence. At the same time, it's not that deadly as it seems to be.

Another research states that on average those who become millionaires will bankrupt 3 times during their lifetime before they become wealthy.

Therefore, if you are willing to fail and try again; if you're persistent and have a strong character – then starting your business is probably the fastest way to get rich.

Way #2 – Build Your Career & Invest 10-20% of Your Wages

Investments, as you’ve probably heard many times, can be a cool thing.

Make an investment of only $50 a month, but do it consistently over the course of your working years. By the time you retire, you'll probably become a millionaire!

If you want to speed up this process, you need to invest higher amounts of your earnings. That is why it's important to build your career to have that free money at your disposal.

Investment is a long term thing. In a way, this can be discouraging. You wish to become rich now, not sometime later in the future or by the time you retire.

On the other hand, when you try to get rich fast by starting a business, the downside is that you face high level of risk.

Building a career, and investing 10-20% of salary is a safer approach. If you make conservative investments, which give you 6-8% of capital growth, the risk is pretty low.

Compared to a business venture, investments is a slower but surer way to go.

The main advice here, probably well known to you, is: ‘pay yourself first’. Once you got your salary – invest 10-20% of this amount right away. If you discipline yourself to this method – it’s one of the surest ways to make a million dollars.

Not for nothing, Einstein called compound interest the "eighth wonder of the world." Such is its power!

Every time you get career promotion, you’ll be able to invest higher amounts of money. By doing so, you can shorten the time frame required to become a millionaire to 10 years, and even shorter than that.


Way #3 – Work In High Paid Industry

How can you get work in the high paid industry? A solid education is the way to go!

For instance, MBA can help you get into the top management of a corporation where you can enjoy a good pay package.

Other lucrative professions are either becoming a lawyer or a doctor. For instance, a cardiologist earns an average of 442,000 dollars a year in the US. {According to Forbes}

What if you don't possess degrees in lucrative professions stated above?

What if you don't have any solid education at all? Does it mean you have lost the opportunity to make a million dollars? Not at all!

Career in Sales

Yet another good way to earn as much as you want is a career in sales where you can get a hefty commission. Here, the opportunities to increase your level of income are virtually unlimited!

Real Estate Industry

Another good industry to work in is the real estate. Some researchers even state that the majority of people got rich from real estate. It’s hard to prove it though.

Anyways, it's pretty obvious that the amounts changing hands are always big enough in real estate. Therefore, this business offers a good opportunity to take a decent share of the whole pie.

It is seen that even those who made money from some other businesses originally are oftentimes investing in real estate. So, it's a very tempting industry to get associated with.

If you work in such high paid industries, your chances to make million dollars are high, even without starting a business or making investments. Here, you can become rich just by developing your professional skills and advancing your career.


Way #4 – Become a Celebrity

Have you ever dreamed to become a champion in sports, or a movie/music star, or a book author?

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Angelina Jolie (L) and Brad Pitt attend the EE British Academy Film Awards 2014 at The Royal Opera House on February 16, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Getty Images)

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt

Although it feels good to be rich and famous, the downside is that the competition is insanely tough. There are millions of people who are already trying for the same.

For instance, if you wish to become a movie star, the odds are 1 in 1.5 million! The chances are so low that it makes this way really tough.


Way #5 – Gambling

You may go to Las Vegas, hoping to make fortune by luck. Buying a lottery ticket is another way to try it out.

It has the downside too. Chances of making millions are very low. They are about the same as becoming a celebrity (way #4).

Moreover, you can lose money and go bankrupt.


Way #6 – Marry a Millionaire

It’s one more common way to become a millionaire.

And that's about it! Of course, there could be some other (more exotic) ways to gain your fortune. But they are too extreme to be considered seriously.

Let’s summarize the 6 main ways we analyzed. The ways #4-6 rather depend on luck. If you wish to have more guaranteed success, probably you have to choose the ways 1, 2 or 3.



  1. Starting your business is the quickest but at the same time the riskiest way to make a fortune.
  2. Building your career and investing 10-20% of your salary is the slow but sure way to go.
  3. Working in high paid industry is suitable if you have a solid education and you are hard working person. Good skills in sales would help a lot.

Before reading this article you might be unsure how to make your millions. Hopefully, now you have more clarity about that.

Whatever way you choose, it’s not going to be easy. But at least now you know what to do if you wish to make a big fortune.

Igor Smirnov

Igor Smirnov

Psychologist, blogger, chess Grandmaster, Internet entrepreneur. Follow Igor on Facebook

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