In Your 2010 Business Plan, Are You "Shoulding" On Yourself?

Real Estate Agent with RLAH Real Estate AB95346

This is the time of year when many of us write down our plans for the new year.  For me, the plan is usually a combination of a lot of things that cover both the personal and professional domains of my life.  And as I think about what worked and what didn't work in 2009, and use what I've learned to create the new plan,  I find myself surrounded by hundreds of "shoulds".

I should lose weight.  We all know that diets begun on January 1 of any year are doomed to failure, and I'm trying to create a plan that is "should-less".  I think I will call Margaret Rome, who I saw today and who looks just stunning, minus about 25 pounds. 

I should stop playing computer games.  Yeah, like making it a should is going to help me cut out this one.  Fat freakin' chance!  So maybe if I figure out a way to start each morning off with a conversation with my Sweetie where I swear to him that I will avoid Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook for an entire day, and if I break my solemn oath I will have to tell him about it - hmmm.  That could work!

And the should list could go on and on.  You know, keeping my office organized, de-cluttering my house, cleaning out the trunk of my car, getting a better system for keeping in touch with clients, figuring out the Tweet thing and revising my book. 

But it's really not about the shoulds

It's about remembering what works and mastering new skills.  And it's writing a plan for what works and then just doing it. 

Ah, and the just doing it thing!  That's the rub, for me at least.

Something tells me that most of the Active Rain bloggers know all about the importance of writing it down.  A written plan is so much more powerful that some airy fairy ideas floating around our little brains. 

So I'm spending the next three weeks setting goals - goals with specific, measurable results - and writing out each one how I am going to go about meeting them. 

And it's all going to be "should free".



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Lisa Coates
Precision Realty - Halifax, NS
Residential Home Sales Specialist


I like your style and hope you all the best. But remember goal setting and business planning are two different things. I wish you well and keep up the GREAT INSPIRING WRITES. You have a golden talent. And you SHOULD have a Fabulous 2010.



Dec 12, 2009 03:18 AM #12
James Downing - Metro DC Houses Team REALTORS®, CRS, GRI, ABR,MRP, MilRes
Real Living | At Home - Washington, DC
When Looking to Buy or Sell - Make the Right Move

I think I need a should list (and I should NOT list).  I should go to the gym; I should not so much pasta and red wine....   and so on and so on...

Dec 12, 2009 03:55 AM #13
Jane Peters
Home Jane Realty - Los Angeles, CA
Connecting you to the L.A. real estate market

I am one of the airy fairies.  I think I should  write down my plan and stick to it.  And I am going to hold myself responsible on a daily basis with dire consequences if I don't perform.

Dec 12, 2009 05:45 AM #14
Liz Loadholt
Liz Loadholt- AgentOwned Realty- Covering SC - Mount Pleasant, SC
Realtor--Broker-in-charge - Trainer--Relocation Director Covering SC

Pat ---- great post --- so true -- so many have the "should haves" --thanks for the inspiration.

                          Happy Holidays

Dec 12, 2009 05:52 AM #15
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

Pat -- you are soooo funny.  Most people don't do well with shoulds...... however, writing down goals and plans and taking baby steps seem to work for most people.

Dec 12, 2009 05:55 AM #16
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

Now I can connect you with the photo I see! Glad you came to the "Crabcakes and Coffey" Event!

Dec 12, 2009 09:46 AM #17
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Pat, to get to the should-less world, convert the should word to will. I will lose weight for example.

Dec 12, 2009 10:42 AM #18
Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Patricia - I'm taking my car in for service on Monday---so tomorrow will find me discovering exactly what is in the trunk of my car.  I'm sure I'm in for some long lost surprises!

Dec 12, 2009 11:22 AM #19
Elizabeth Bolton
RE/MAX Destiny Real Estate Cambridge, MA - Cambridge, MA
Cambridge MA Realtor

Hi Pat ~ How did you get inside my head?! Shoulda, would, coulda - yeegads! Gotta start eating that elephant one bite at a time.


Dec 12, 2009 12:20 PM #20
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Hi Pat!  This is great!  I wrote a post a year or two ago "Woulda, Shoulda..." and try to avoid those mindsets at all costs!  That written plan is essential to success--now if I could just find the time this month to finish mine for 2010!!

Have a wonderful Sunday...


Debe In CharlotteMerry Christmas

Dec 12, 2009 12:23 PM #21
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Pat, So great being with you yesterday. This is going to be an awesome year for you!!

Just like "I don't do upset." I have also  removed the word "should" from my vocabulary!

Please feel free to call anytime!

Dec 12, 2009 12:59 PM #22
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

I think that I should just stick to what I plan to do. That makes sense.

Dec 12, 2009 01:16 PM #23
Terry & Bonnie Westbrook
Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner - Grand Rapids, MI
Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re

One day at a time and one project. Little changes can bring big results.

Dec 12, 2009 02:01 PM #24
Steve Shatsky
Dallas, TX

Hi Pat... how the heck did that tornado get into the trunk of your car???

Dec 12, 2009 02:22 PM #25
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

Well, I should be cleaning my shotguns this afternoon. Instead, I'm going out shortly to shoot one of them at about 50 clay pigeons.

I should get my filing done, but instead, I'm going to put everything to be filed away on the filing table and hope I don't need any docs this week.

I should clean out the fireplace, but instead, I'm going to throw another log on the fire and enjoy it.

I should.. . . .

Dec 13, 2009 01:24 AM #26
Carol Hamilton
Prudential Ambassador - Omaha, NE
Prudential, Real Estate, Omaha, NE

Pat, great way to get the new year off to the proper start.  You are so much more likely to accomplish your goals when they are staring you in the face on a piece of paper!

Dec 13, 2009 08:29 AM #27
Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Clearwater, FL
Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor

Yes, it is again time for the new year's business plan..................I do need to get it done........really I do..................

Dec 14, 2009 08:42 AM #28
Dawn & Charlie Tetro
PalmerHouse Properties & associates - Johns Creek, GA
Real Service Real Results

I had to laugh when I read your post!   It seems we have similar struggles as do many of us agents!   Btw, for me, I need to not play jigsaw online! LOL!  In any case, I am going to get my shoulds under control this year and make them "I wills".  Good luck to you and I hope you have the most fantasic year ever!

Dec 28, 2009 02:06 AM #29
Rebecca Fisher
Winter Haven, FL

Are you hiding in my pocket? Bejeweled Blitz is my kryptonite, my guilty pleasure, my Ben and Jerry's. It only takes a minute, right?

I did my goals a few weeks ago-- spiritual, personal and professional. 3-4 of each and not so lofty that I'll want to put a bullet in my foot by Thanksgiving.

Jan 04, 2010 11:11 AM #30
Lynn Johnson
Coldwell Banker Home Connection - Owatonna, MN
Owatonna, MN Real Estate

Pat - I read recently on (not that I spend much time on there playing games), that having those to-dos hanging over your head can cause continual stress that can take up to 7 years off your life.  I guess it's time to let go (or just get things done right away) so we don't feel pressured by the "shoulds".  I use my task list to keep me on track as best that I can.  Best of luck in your continued success.

Feb 01, 2010 02:26 AM #31
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Patricia Kennedy

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