There is an ActiveRain member, Lisa Stafford of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, who is in a situation that happens way too often to the self-employed, especially those in service industries, and this post was inspired by her post. I'd also like to thank Al and Peggy Cunningham for pointing me in Lisa's direction. When you finish here, stop by and give Lisa some encouragement and then stop by Al and Peggy and thank them for caring.
If you're feeling overwhelmed by all the new technology and social networking sites, or you don't think you're accomplishing enough each day, or your family and friends seem to take up a lot of your time, or, or, or.....
Sit down and decide where you want to be five years from now. It won't be easy, but it can be done. It might take some real introspective vision and honesty with yourself, but you can do it.
After you've done that, figure out what you need to do to get where you want to be in five years. Again it won't be easy. In fact, I can honestly tell you that it's difficult.
Once you know where you want to be in five years, break that down into periods of 12 months. What do you need to do each year to get where you want to be in five years?
Now break down each year into periods of months. What do you need to do each month to get where you want to be at the end of year one, year two, year three, year four, and year five?
Now break the year down into periods of weeks. 52 weeks. What do you need to do each week to get where you want to be at the end of the month, two months, three months?
Now break down the week into periods of days. As a self-employed real estate professional, I can guarantee you that you will have very little success if you just want to work 40 hours a week. No great professional in any industry works only 40 hours a week. If you want to work 40 hours a week, you are in the wrong profession. You are in a job and simply haven't found your career yet. That's okay as long as you realize it and keep searching for your career. This is where a career counselor can help.
I like to treat each day like any other day. That way I can start a new business, a new career, a new month, a new year, a new anything on any day. After all, why should you be restricted to a calendar system that was invented by some yo-yo 500 years ago. Create your own calendar and get started today!
I usually work about 16 hours a day, but the word work might not be a good word to use because I consider work to be something that I generally don't enjoy doing. It's work to change the oil in my car or rotate the tires, so I let the car shop do that. It's work to file my income taxes, so I let my CPA do that. It's not work for me to help other people get their businesses up and running. That's my career.
If you have health concerns, financial concerns, parents, a son, your religion, etc., you have to plan time for that and for them. For the self-employed, it's important to schedule time for them, to plan for them. Otherwise you wind up thinking that you are not giving them enough of your time, and that affects your career.
I would suggest working a minimum of 60 hours a week. You can do that by working 10 hours a day for 6 days a week, or 8¼ hours a day for 7 days a week. I don't think you'll be able to be successful in real estate without that type of commitment.
Once you determine what you need to do each day, break it down into hours. If you need to get your son off to school, schedule your time to do that. If you want to sit down each day and visit with God, schedule your time to do that. S/He'll appreciate knowing exactly when you're going to stop by.
Schedule everything. Sure, occasionally the unexpected will happen, but it's much easier to catch up when you only have to work a couple of extra hours on any specific day rather than waiting until the year is gone, only to realize that you didn't accomplish what you needed to accomplish. How are you going to catch up then?
Once you have things broken down into hours, work those hours persistently and consistently. If you'll honestly do that -- you should track everything you do -- you'll find that the days, weeks, months, years, and five-year plan will fall naturally into place. You might fall short, but it won't be by much.
It does take honesty with yourself, though, in determining if real estate is your career or a job. Honesty in working persistently and consistently, even when things are gloomy. If real estate is really your career, and you work persistently and consistently, and honestly, you'll find that the gloomy days are actually few and far between.
Be honest with yourself.