Such a great blog. I wanted to share with others to see.
When Carol Williams announced she and Anna Krutchten were hosting an August Challenge to ActiveRain bloggers titled, “Embracing Life’s Lessons,” I was at first, a little stumped as to where to put my focus. However, after giving it some thought, I realized one of the more important lessons I’ve learned, has been the power of surrender. I practice it in my personal life, and I have practiced it in business.
Learning the power of surrender is more than simply choosing your battles, and the hill you wish to die on. It’s about what can be gained by stepping back, and allowing for adventurous serendipity, when OTHERS are allowed to make choices and decisions, instead of it always being just YOU!
In my family, I’m known for a saying I have. I wouldn’t be surprised if when I pass on to the Great Beyond, someone sticks it on my tombstone. It is, “I’m on vacation!” Often, when the family makes plans for a gathering, or event, they’ll ask what I would like to do. My response is almost always, “You decide, I’m on vacation.” This response, and the planning by others, has found me having delightful times, with an element of surprise. There have been amazing trips, events and even places within my own community, I wouldn’t have known existed, had it not been for my surrendering, and allowing others to show me.
More importantly, I have a grandson, who experienced a significant battle with Schizophrenia for a few years, especially in his early 20s. During one visit, he confided he was refusing to take his medication. He explained the medicine took his energy away, and he could barely function. He also felt refusal allowed him some element of control over his life. I asked him if I could share a bit of wisdom. “Yes, Nana,” he replied. And, I shared, “There is a power in surrender.” Even the weary soldier on the battlefield, whether he has won or lost, will often look forward to surrender, as a way to finally be given rest. I’m happy to say my grandson took my advice. Once he had taken his medication for a few weeks, he found the side-effects which had been so negative, began to disappear as his body began to adjust. And, because of surrender, he is now a functioning human being, who is absolutely delightful to be around.
Before my retirement, during the 40 years I was a Realtor, it was important to maintain an element of control, to make certain aspects of transactions were kept on tract, and moved smoothly. It can sometimes be a difficult task, when auxiliary professions and individuals are so critical to keeping things on schedule, and allow for a successful escrow close. It is especially important to know when you can make a difference, and when you cannot. For example, in one very memorable transaction, my client was a Gold Star widow, who had lost her husband during the Vietnam War. I had known her many years. She was selling her home, and was moving to a small community where she had many friends. An investor buyer came in with a lowball offer. They named all sorts of reasons for the low offer, that in reality didn’t exist. They were also very friendly with their lender. I explained to my seller that we could wait for other offers. However, she felt a bit pressured because she had a commitment to the place she was moving into. She signed the papers, and the house went to pending status.
Several days later, things became even more uncomfortable. The appraiser arrived. The minute he stepped through the door, he immediately started spouting off negative things about the house. (1) He mentioned it was built on the zero lot line. Yes, I knew that. All the comparative sales in that neighborhood were on the zero lot line, and that is what our evaluation had been based on. Plus, my seller’s home had undergone extensive upgrades in recent years. Most of the sold homes, in the comparative sales, had not. (2) When the appraiser stepped into the backyard, which had a beautiful Japanese garden complete with a Koi pond, he said, “That pond does not add value.” I responded, I never said it did. When the appraiser left, I had a really bad feeling. Within hours, he had sent the resulting appraisal to the buyer agent. I got the phone call, it was another $20,000. low from our agreed upon price. We asked for the lender to review and reconsider. They would not. I was convinced the investor buyer, the lender, and this appraiser, worked in concert to run sales in this manner. I suggested to my seller, once again, that we return the home to the market, and find another buyer. However, my seller was even more gifted in the power of surrender than I. She wished to continue on with the sale. She wasn’t as disturbed by the low ball offer, and the low appraisal, as I was. She saw she would receive enough from the sale to accomplish what she wished to do. She wanted to be with her friends in a close-knit condo community, where folks traveled together. I surrendered to my client’s wishes, and we closed the deal!