We will all take business losses this year. If you haven’t already, you know they are inevitably coming. Losses come in all sizes and can happen unexpectedly.
As a real estate agent, we are all entrepreneurs. Maybe you are leading a team, which means you are also a business owner. Without a set paycheck coming to us every two weeks, we need to buy our own insurance and set up a retirement savings account. These risks are offset by doing what we love, creating the life of our dreams, and knowing we can make as much money as we set our minds to. But it also means we will fail miserably throughout the journey, without a safety net to catch us during times of challenge.
Loss as an Agent
We all know what types of losses I am talking about: losing a prominent listing, having someone leave the team, going on a listing appointment against four other agents and coming in as the seller’s fourth choice. These are the moments that happen regularly, but no one really talks about. These are the moments that can ruin your day, week, or month - if you let them.
These are all natural feelings that come along with taking a significant loss. We all have big goals, with grand visions of our futures. When something doesn’t go according to our plan, it’s easy to be overcome with stress and critical thoughts.
How did I get here? How did I allow this to happen? You begin to break down every detail that led you to this moment. But if it is 9:30 on a Tuesday morning, you have a fully scheduled day ahead of you. There is no doubt you will feel some instant emotions from what just happened. But how can you take those emotions, put them into another place, and move forward to dominate your day?
We have to use perspective.
Because we are so passionate about what we do every day, it’s easy to lose perspective and get caught in the details leading up to the loss.
A hack I use is comparing my business year to a football season.
When I am dealt a loss, I ask myself: Where would this rank in a football season?
So if I lose a deal, for instance, a $1 million listing, but my goal is $100 million for the year, it becomes easy to put that into perspective. If my end of year goal is my Super Bowl, then what is $1 million on the road to that championship?
Is it a playoff game or a semi-finals game? If I get this one deal does my $100 million goal happen? No, of course not. So, it’s not a playoff game.
Is it a regular season game? When you break it down in football terms - and this is literally how I think about it in the moment - is that even one of 16 regular season games? Probably not.
So now, you have to evaluate, is this loss a pre-season loss, is this before the season even starts, or is this a bad practice?
When I consider that comparison, a calmness takes over my body. I realize how little of a problem this loss is. Anyone can recover from a bad practice.
Using Perspective to Move on with Your Day
Getting past the loss is about taking in the information and putting it into perspective. The sports analogy works for me, but you can create a relatable situation that works for you. Create your analogy now, so that you can use it as a tool as soon as you learn about a loss.
Knowing how big your end goal is will help you see how little and insignificant one little speed bump along the way is. Put these things into perspective and use an analogy and that will instantly help you calm those nerves, calm those fears, and get rid of that instant anxiety that you get when something doesn’t go your way.
Be able to take these L’s in the face, because that’s what we do, and move on with the day like nothing ever happened. When you start focusing on what’s ahead of you, the WINS will start to pile up.
What are your hacks for handling a loss? Share in the comments!