Ah motivation. It’s like a secret driver that allows you to get the job done, effortlessly move around obstacles in your way, and make real progress, no matter the task at hand.
And chances are it’s a feeling familiar to everyone, offering the energy required to put in the hard yards and keep on going, tick off the to-do list, and edge ever-closer to the goals you set.
There’s also a good chance you’ve experienced that inert feeling that robs us of motivation – where the reasons for doing something just don’t quite seem enough and the reward for putting in the hard yards feels too far in the future.
That’s the thing about motivation, it can be fleeting and hard to sustain.
It can be an incredible catalyst when you have it, but is just too unpredictable to rely on, especially in a career that spans years, not days or weeks.
In real estate we talk a lot about motivation, but it’s unapologetically reserved for amateurs. Why? Because motivation isn’t the solid foundation of a lengthy and successful career.
Instead, the foundation of prolonged success comes down to embracing the habits of professionalism, and professionals look at motivation differently.
They understand taking action is not an outcome of motivation; it’s a function of responsibility, a function of character.
So how can you sustain the professionalism that’s required for a successful real estate career?
The real estate definition of a professional
A real estate professional is an agent or property manager for all seasons.
They understand the market will fluctuate, headlines will waver between boom and doom, but their core responsibility to their customer will never change.
They are committed to service and customer experience in the knowledge properties will always transact and homes will always rent.
The service and the experience they provide ensures they are the professional those clients turn to time and again.
In the process, a professional agent invests in world class marketing. They build their brand, educate their market and share their insight and knowledge.
Along the way, they invest in perpetual learning. They glean insight from their errors, seek out mentors and guidance, embrace ongoing education and constantly refine their skillset.
These are the professional foundations, and a professional agent draws on these each and every day to get their job done.
That said, some days getting the job done feels easier than others, and that’s where a little inspiration might be required.
A little inspiration
While motivation might be hard to sustain, there are a series of strategies every real estate professional can embrace to instil enthusiasm for the immediate job at hand.
So, if motivation’s in short supply and that inert feeling is creeping in, here’s what I would suggest:
Every agent and property manager knows exactly what they need to do each day in terms of dollar-productive tasks.
Schedule these in your calendar as non-negotiable.
That might mean blocking time for prospecting calls or setting a specific time period for responding to emails. Whatever the task is, set a time for it, and dive on in.
- Goal reinforcement
Goals are imperative for building momentum. They can also help a real estate professional reverse engineer success.
But to work they need to be front of mind, which is why many of the top performers review their goals daily and reinforce them, setting targets and rewards.
When you regularly review your goals, you keep the big-picture in sight, rather than getting lost in the day-to-day.
- Accountability buddies and mentors
Real estate might be about the agent as an individual but that doesn’t mean you have to go it alone.
To hold yourself accountable to your goals and the tasks that help you achieve them, partner up with an accountability buddy or mentor.
When enthusiasm is lacking, these trusted individuals can also help you retain the perspective needed to get the job done.
Every day in real estate might be different but often the routines you set allow you to progressively achieve both your personal and professional goals.
Create morning and end-of-day routines that include the key things you wish to achieve, such as fitness, education, and those non-negotiables we mentioned earlier.
Routines take the questions of ‘where do I start?’ or ‘what shall I do now?’ out of the equation.
And if you’re looking for a great place to begin, consider starting the day with the gym gear, and finishing it with tomorrow’s action list.
- Daily inspiration
Sometimes a little external inspiration is all that’s required to feel re-energised and see the big picture from a different perspective.
Set aside 15 minutes each day for a little inspiration, whether that’s reading, a podcast or a video.
Build the mindset
Real estate isn’t hard, but it’s also not easy, and it’s a career that can be especially challenging due to the fact you have to generate the product, then sell or rent it to achieve success.
But doing that professionally and consistently is all about routine, habit, and the realisation motivation will only take you so far.
In other words, build the fortitude, mindset and resilience of being a professional. Leave the ‘motivation’ to the amateurs.