After a long day of travel from Columbus to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, I realized that Realtors have a lot in common with the first day of a family vacation. Whether you're planning to get away for a week or just ready to get back to work and make something happen this week, see if you do these things.
Start with the end in mind - Steven Covey mentioned this one in his Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Do you know where you want to end up before you even start?
Get an early start - Avoid congestion, traffic and other distractions by getting started before the sun rises. As Zig Ziglar once said, "There are no traffic jams on the extra mile."
Bring everything you may need - A successful agent arrives at his or her listing appointment assuming the Sellers will be ready to say "yes" so make sure you have your paperwork, lock box, digital camera, for sale sign, video camera and anything else to start immediately. It's always more expensive and sometimes time consuming to get some of the basic items once you arrive.
Stay focused - It's easy to take your eyes off the road so do whatever you need to do to keep on the "straight and narrow."
Build breaks into your schedule - It's so important to stay focused and taking regular breaks is one of the best ways to do so. Whether it's a rest area for a quick stretch or a gas & guzzle pit stop for some "fuel," breaking up the long days is always helpful.
Stay nourished - When Realtors get into a rhythm, it might be difficult to step away and grab a bite to eat but in order to keep your body and mind fresh, it's necessary to eat healthy. Perhaps stash some apples or bananas in your office/car and drink plenty of water.
Be prepared to "drive defensively" - In a competitive world like real estate, you might think everyone is looking out for themselves...and you might not be too far off from the truth. Always remind yourself who you're representing and do the right thing. You can't control what happens to you but you can control how you react to what happens to you.
Don't Text & Drive - It's been proven in numerous studies that the brain in incapable of multi-tasking. Instead, work on one thing at a time based on your prioritized "to do list." Remember, the easiest way to prioritize in real estate is to look at two tasks and ask yourself, "which one of these two things gets me closer to a closing?" The answer becomes your priority.
Unpack before you relax - After a long day on the road, most people would like to jump in the pool or hit the hammock with a cold beverage first. Instead, get the "travel" of the day behind you completely by unpacking (literally or figuratively) before you move on. Closing out your professional day before you head home to your personal lives will help you separate the two and create more balance in your life.
Whether you're traveling this summer or just working hard trying to achieve the goals you set earlier this year, if you keep building relationships, solving problems and having fun, there's a better chance you're going to enjoy your journey.