Beware of Toxic People


Tom Corley boats - crop

Relationships are the currency of the wealthy.

In my Rich Habits Study, I learned that one of the most important traits of self-made millionaires was the habit of forging long-term relationships with other success-minded people.

If you follow me, you know I spend a great deal of time advocating the need to remove toxic people from your social networks. Toxic people drag you down and distract you from the pursuit of your dreams and your goals.

But what does it mean to be toxic? Toxic people live in a world of negativity. They expose their negativity through their words, their social media posts, their emails or their actions:

  • Toxic people are demeaning – They belittle those they disagree with.
  • Toxic people believe their opinions are superior to your opinions – If your opinions differ from the opinions of a toxic person, they ridicule you and try to make you feel inferior or inadequate.
  • Toxic people are ideologues – They have beliefs and ideologies that they wish to impose upon you. They don’t respect your beliefs or ideologies.
  • Toxic people are closed-minded – They close their minds to contrary thoughts, ideas, opinions and facts.
  • Toxic people are Fault Finders – They seek, and thus find, fault in others.
  • Toxic people are perpetually agitated – Their emotional state is one-sided – agitated or angry.
  • Toxic people are unfiltered – They say whatever is on their mind, irrespective of the damage that might do to their relationships.
  • Toxic people struggle with relationships – Toxic people are constantly damaging or destroying relationships. They have few long-term relationships.
  • Toxic people are in constant turmoil – Toxic people struggle financially, struggle with relationships, struggle with their jobs, struggle with their clients or customers.
  • Toxic people are problem seekers – They look for problems in everything.
  • Toxic people are pessimists – They see the bad in situations and in life.
  • Toxic people are Mistake Finders – Toxic people are vigilant in finding and pointing out the mistakes of others.
  • Toxic people are sarcastic – They use sarcasm, blanketed inside humor, as a means of putting you down.
  • Toxic people are gadflies – They provoke others, behind your back, and cause problems for you with other people.
  • Toxic people are selfish – They put themselves first, always.
  • Toxic people are judgemental – They believe they are superior and look down on others.
  • Toxic people are gossipers – They will talk badly about you behind your back.
  • Toxic people lie and are untrustworthy – They struggle with the truth.
  • Toxic people are disloyal – Toxic people will turn their back on you in a time of need or unexpectedly stab you in the back.

Having one or two of these toxic habits does make someone toxic. Some very successful, upbeat people in my study had toxic habits. The difference was they did not have many toxic habits or their good habits, by far, outweighed their toxic habits.

The important point is awareness. Have your antenna up. Know what to look for. It takes time for most individuals to reveal their toxic habits. But once they do, disengage with them. Eliminate them from your life. Toxic people have deep-seated problems that become your problems if you allow them to be a part of your life. Toxic people will distract you from your pursuit of success. They will drag you down emotionally. They are wrenches, potholes and obstacles along your path towards success.

When you make a habit of eliminating toxic people from your life, your life will improve. Your mindset will shift from negative to positive. You will have fewer problems and less stress.

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley understands the difference between being rich and poor: at age nine, his family went from being multi-millionaires to broke in just one night, due to a catastrophic fire that destroyed his Dad's thriving business. For fourteen years they struggled with poverty. There were eleven in Tom's family, and they lived in constant fear of losing their home.

Driven by the desire to unlock the secrets to success and failure, Tom spent five years studying the daily activities of 233 rich people and 128 poor people. He discovered there was an immense difference between the habits of the rich and the poor. During his research he identified over 300 daily activities that separated the “haves” from the “have nots.” Tom decided to write a book to share what he learned. That book, Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals (1st Edition), went on to become an Amazon Bestseller in the United States forty times over a three year period. To give you some perspective, in order to be a true Amazon Bestseller in the United States, where you actually receive a specific Bestseller designation from Amazon, you need to be in the top 100 of all books sold by Amazon in the United States in a given day. Rich Habits did that for nearly thirty straight days, rising as high as #7, eclipsing such Bestselling authors such as Stephen Covey, Robert Kiyosaki and J.K. Rowlings. Imagine that - an unknown, first-time, self-published author selling more books than J.K. Rowlings!

Tom now travels the world, sharing his Rich Habits and motivating audiences at industry conferences, corporate events, universities, multi-level marketing group events, and global sales organizations’ presentations and finance conferences. He has even spoken on the same stage with famous entrepreneurs and personal development experts, such as Sir Richard Branson, Robin Sharma, Dr. Daniel Amen, and many others.

Tom has shared his insights on various national and international network, cable, and Internet television programs such as CBS Evening News, NBC News, Yahoo Financially Fit,, India TV, Australia, and a host of others. He has been interviewed on many prestigious nationally syndicated radio shows, including the Dave Ramsey Show, Marketplace Money, and WABC.

Tom has been featured in numerous print magazines—such as Money magazine, Inc. Magazine, SUCCESS Magazine, Entrepreneur magazine, Fast Company magazine, More magazine, Epoca Magazine (Brazil’s largest weekly) and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine—and various online publications, including USA Today, CNN, MSN Money,,, and the Huffington Post. Tom is a frequent contributor to Business Insider,, and a few other media outlets.

National publicity has garnered international media attention for Tom and his Rich Habits research spanning 23 countries. Broadcast media, online publications, and television throughout Asia, the South Pacific, Europe, the United Kingdom, and Central and South America have shared his powerful message.

In an effort to help parents, grandparents, teachers and adults become success mentors to the younger generation, Tom released his second book, Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to be Happy and Successful in Life in 2014. This book was the self-help category winner of the 2015 New York Book Festival and Runner-up in the prestigious 2015 Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards Contest. In 2016 Tom released his third book, Change Your Habits, Change Your Life. This book provides the latest science on habit change as well as more of Tom's unique research on the specific habits that helped transform 177 ordinary individuals into self-made millionaires.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, and hold a master’s degree in taxation. As president of Cerefice and Company, CPAs, Tom heads one of the premier financial firms in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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