Authenticity – A Beloved But Rare Success Trait


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What does it mean to be authentic?

Authentic people are consistently honest about who they are. They tell it like it is. They are happy to reveal their faults as readily as their proprieties.  Authentic people have no interest in putting on airs. They really don’t care what you think about them. They wear no masks.

And people love them for it. Authentic people are like a breath of fresh air. Their authenticity draws people to them like bugs to a light. We trust authentic people more than those who lack authenticity.

  • Authenticity is one of the reasons Donald Trump was elected President of the United States.
  • Authenticity is why so many people were and are willing to happily give their money to Warren Buffet to manage.
  • Authenticity is why so many people love Tom Hanks, the actor.
  • Authenticity is why so many people became fanatic fans of Oprah.
  • Authenticity is why Roger Federer is the most beloved tennis player.
  • Authenticity is why Abraham Lincoln is still revered to this day.

For five years I studied 233 millionaires, which became the basis for my bestselling book, Rich Habits. When I began my five year quest, I honestly had no idea what I would learn. One thing I did learn, which surprised me, was how authentic most of those millionaires were, particularly the self-made millionaires (177 of the 233 were self-made). These self-mades would spend thirty minutes telling me about all of their screw ups, mistakes and how stupid they were. They would tell me stories about their failures and missteps.

Only after some prodding would they reluctantly delve into their strengths or their successes in life.


Because self-made millionaires don’t need validation. Success instilled in them a confidence that did not need to be fed. They also believed, deep down, that it was their mistakes and failures which helped them to build their fortunes in life. They earned the right to be authentic. They earned the right to be honest about who they were.

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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  1. I’ve followed you for years and have always enjoyed your ideas and opinions. But this morning’s Tip ‘o the Morning to you on being authentic has me scratching me head big time.

    In your 2nd paragraph you stated “We trust authentic people more than those who lack authenticity. This is one of the big reasons why Donald Trump was elected President of the United States. He was authentic.” Are you being factious about Donald Trump being “authentic” because if you were not or perhaps had assigned another meaning to this statement which I missed I would love to know. I don’t feel anyone who could actually say that this man if authentic and mean it would be worth following.

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