My Aunt Peg was one of my early mentors in life. She always said what’s on her mind and bragged about it. As a kid, I loved it. I loved seeing my Aunt Peg go to town on someone and to watch their reaction, which was usually not a good one.
At my Aunt Peg’s funeral, many years later, when I was an adult, I noticed that only two friends showed up to pay their respects. Besides the family and those two friends, the church was empty.
Speaking your mind, I realized at that funeral, may not have been such a good thing.
Fast forward to 2009, as I was wrapping up my Rich Habits Study, I came across a data point that brought me all the way back to my Aunt Peg’s funeral – 94% of the wealthy in my study said it was a bad habit to say what’s on your mind. These self-made rich people said that they made it a habit to filter every thought before it came out of their mouth.
The wealthy believed that making a habit of saying what’s on your mind could damage important relationships.
Imagine spending years building a strong relationship with an Influencer, someone who could open doors for you, only to destroy that relationship with a few unfiltered words.
Conversely, 69% of the poor people in my study believed, like my Aunt Peg, that it was a good thing to say what’s on your mind.
Saying what’s on your mind sounds noble, even admirable.
Only, it’s not.
Words can hurt. And the hurt unfiltered words cause can destroy relationships.
The self-made rich in my study figured this out long before they made their first million. And that is one of the reasons they were able to build their wealth.