Tuesday, September 7, 2010


I pulled this article from my coaching blog; hope it will be good for the Go Archives.
Perhaps your head is already throbbing from the frustration this market can produce.   In several of my recent conversations with agents from a variety of local companies, I have noticed a common theme: pressure.  Pressure to perform for income; pressure to close complicated transactions; pressure from clients who themselves are under great stress.   It has been a tough 18 months, and the challenges will continue for the foreseeable future.  Many of us have cut personal expenses, adjusted lifestyles, and even sold our own homes to reduce financial pressure on the personal budget.  Over time the rub becomes more intense.  Successful Realtors are usually optimistic people.  So how do we deal with the ongoing challenges to our income coupled with clients who are also fighting through some of life's most difficult financial decisions?  It does take a toll.  How can we improve our own outlook and recharge the emotional energy level? Here's a few actions to consider:

Share the Load: A recent documentary highlighted Navy Paramedics completing their field exam: 24 hours of intense exercise and drills.  Rescuing the drowning in simulated pool exercises, marathon hikes, crawling through battle conditions, no rations, sleep deprivation, and all done in full gear.  One of the keys to success for these paramedics was team work.  The entire task was completed as a unit.  The final task for this weary crew was to pick up a giant log weighing approximately 2 tons.  No one person could pick it up; the unit was already well past exhaustion.  By coordinated effort they lifted the weight and moved into graduation.  The point: sharing the load is often what gets us through tough times and into cherished success.  On those days when your spirit is heavy, make sure you are engaging with your team.  Rather than hiding at home and watching reruns, get to the office, acknowledge your challenge, and engage with your team.  You can lift that unmovable weight with the help of others.

Transform the Energy: discouragement is a type of energy.  It is a reaction to challenges that we choose to turn inward with unproductive results.  We also have the opportunity to take that energy and apply it to positive activities.  You may want to extend your prospecting activities, take the energy to the gym, or engage in a whole new hobby.  The key is to control and channel the energy to something of value, rather than allowing it to attack your interior.

Tune Your Business Budget: you have probably already made cuts, and even gone through a second round of financial adjustments.  Look again.  There is something that you missed.  There are other ways to spend your money more effectively.  You may consider giving up something that you previously thought was essential.  Having less is one way to possess more of our internal lives.  Some deep discoveries of the positive kind await you in this step.

Engage In New Prospecting Activities: If current prospecting activities fail to yield the results you want, consider engaging in new activities.  Trying harder is not always the right answer.  Often we have to find a new method, maybe you will be the one to even pioneer that technique.  Watch other industries, consider the patterns in your network, and constantly capture insight into what IS working.  Then adapt it to your approach.

Cry When Necessary: Fear, frustration, and disappointment are emotions.  They are expressions of our spirit and body that need outlet.  It's probably not best to have a meltdown when showing that 63rd home to an indecisive client, but there are appropriate relationships and times where we can weep, let go, and shed those tears.  It's a strange phenomena, but expressing sorrow usually leads to a level of relief and refreshment.

Laugh at Every Occasion: Correspondingly, make sure to position yourself for laughter.  Know the shows that make you giggle, schedule coffee with those who lighten your heart, and read books that portray the humor of life.  Laughter is a vitamin of which we all need a daily dose.

Consider the Fast: fasting is a spiritual activity embraced by all the world's major religions.  It is process in which we disconnect from food to increase the sensitivity of our spirits.  Unfortunately, our real estate market is causing many of us to go through a type of financial fast.  We can ask, "Why is this happening to me? Why is the market so bad?"  Those are valid questions, but they really don't lead to growth.  With a fasting perspective, we can replace those questions with ones from a different angle: "What can I learn from this market?" "How can I reshape myself for good from these circumstances?"

Today's market is challenging for us and heavy for many of our clients.  But these also times when we can prove our mettle, grow our character, and perform in ways we never thought we could.  It's largely a matter of the perspective we choose.  I hope you'll build something great with a creativity that will inspire all those around you.