The model makes certain assumptions. You start out as a schlepper, grow to be a macher, and hope to become a mensch. That is the usual progression, with the exceptions noted throughout this chapter. Even though the model is simple, it is not perfectly neat; anytime we deal with generalizations about people, we will have "messy" exceptions to deal with.
The problem is that while I can tell you what you need to do to become a macher, I can't give you a recipe for becoming a mensch. You can't become a mensch through hard work, the way you can become a macher. It may be that mensches are born, not made. Asking how to become a mensch is a little like asking how to become wise, or how to become enlightened.
It helps to have come under the influence of a mensch or two, especially early in life when they can serve as examples. Growing up with a macher for a father and a mensch for a grandfatherand seeing how their styles played against each othercould be very enlightening, if the schlepper child were especially aware.
Another key idea is understanding that the mensches of the world want nothing in return for their kindness but that you pass it on to the next generation.
But what do I know?