The False Assumption Habit Will Keep You Poor

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Humans have a bad habit of making assumptions. Assumptions are, by definition, the act of accepting a truth without definitive proof. A habit of making assumptions is a bad one because it can lead to unexpected consequences, oftentimes bad ones that cost you not only time but money.

In my five year study of the daily habits of the rich and poor (Rich Habits Study), 56% of the rich and 72% of the poor in my study engaged in the bad habit of making False Assumptions. This one data point initially slipped through the cracks because there didn’t seem, to me, to be enough of a difference between the rich and the poor when it came to making assumptions. But when I drilled deeper, I made an important discovery. Out of the 233 rich people in my study, 177 were self-made millionaires. Forty-one percent came from poor households and the rest from middle-class households. In this self-made group of millionaires, only 43% of the self-made millionaires had this False Assumption habit. Why?

Sixty-seven percent of the self-made millionaires in my study were entrepreneurs, or individuals who were pursuing some dream, purpose, calling or big goal in life. As a result of their past experience in making assumptions, they learned that many of their assumptions were dead wrong. They found out the hard way that making false assumptions leads to mistakes that cost them time and money. Time is one thing, but money is a precious commodity to budding entrepreneurs and they need every dollar. They simply cannot afford to lose too much money. Successful entrepreneurs figure out along their journey that making false assumptions can put them out of business quickly. So, the smart ones, the ones who become self-made millionaires, learn to avoid making false assumptions.

I found in my research that individuals make false assumptions in one of four ways:

  1. You do not ask enough questions or
  2. You do not ask enough of the right questions or
  3. You don’t seek feedback from experts in your industry or
  4. If you do seek feedback, you dismiss it and simply do what you want.

There’s a narrative out there that all entrepreneurs go with their gut, or their intuition, when making decisions. Because of this misleading perception, entrepreneurs are viewed by most as bold and daring. That may be true of unsuccessful entrepreneurs, but I discovered it wasn’t true of successful entrepreneurs – the ones who go on to become self-made millionaires.

Self-made millionaires do not make important decisions until they have evaluated all of the feedback they receive from many different sources. Then they weigh that feedback. Feedback from industry experts obviously carries more weight than feedback from non-experts. Seeking feedback from others, prior to making any important decision, is a firewall against making a false assumption.


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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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