For the most part, entrepreneurs don’t just happen. In order to succeed at a business venture, it usually requires a combination of hard work, skill, good ideas and (to some extent) luck. I was fortunate that I began blogging just before the idea of blogs as moneymakers got big. I was in the right place at the right time to be able to capitalize on the Internet as a source of freelance income. Technology has made it possible for me to support my family — and do it from home as someone who is self-employed.

At the time, I didn’t really think of myself as an entrepreneur, but I have since been told that my business of providing web content to others is a great example of entrepreneurship. And I guess that could be accurate. As I look at myself, and at some of the other entrepreneurs out there, I see some similarities. Here are 5 qualities I feel are shared by successful entrepreneurs:

1. Self-Motivation

If you are going to work for yourself, and if you are going to be successful at it, you need to be self-motivated. No one is going to make you go to work, or force you to accomplish the tasks necessary to reach success. You have to be able to motivate yourself.

2. Hard Working

When I first started, I did a lot of hard work for less than I was worth. I still know when to work hard. Starting a business requires a great deal of dedication and work. If you are not accustomed to doing hard things, and working hard, it will be difficult to find success as an entrepreneur. Even after the hard work is mostly over, you still need to be willing to get down to it when necessary.

3. General Optimism

A generally good attitude is a must for an entrepreneur. The ability to pick out some of the good and the advantages — even in a tough situation — can keep you going, even when things are tough. A successful entrepreneur has to know how to look on the bright side, injecting a dose of optimism into the situation, even while acknowledging some of the very real and practical challenges facing him or her.

4. Discipline

In a lot of ways, this is related to self-motivation. You need to be able to keep yourself on task, and you need to get things done — even if you don’t feel like it. Focus on what needs to be done, and make sure that you do get it done. Without that discipline, your business is likely to fail.

5. Passion

It helps to have passion. Knowledge of the subject is important, and it can be a real plus, but if you want true success, you need to have passion for what you are doing. I love personal finance, science and politics. I also love writing. While I don’t get paid for writing about politics, I have been able to make money writing about personal finance and science. Having a passion for what I do keeps me motivated, and it ensures that I will keep trying my best with my business.

What are some of the qualities you think makes for a successful entrepreneur?
This post was included in the Carnival of Personal Finance