Don’t let holiday fun detract from your personal success
There is always something on the horizon. Whether it’s Memorial Day weekend, an upcoming vacation or end-of-year celebrations, it seems our schedules are always packed with distractions. Don’t get me wrong. Holidays and celebrations are wonderful! They break up the monotony of the day-to-day grind and giving us something to look forward to as we daydream about that much-needed escape.
Here’s the problem: There. Is. Always. Something. On. The. Horizon. Excited anticipation can quickly and easily spiral into an excuse to coast through the rest of the year. Memorial Day ushers in summer, which quickly brings about the Fourth of July, longer days, shorter Fridays and barbecue invites that extend through Labor Day. Then Labor Day passes and you’re back to business…right? Wrong for many people.
You have to get your kids ready for the new school year. Then there are PTA meetings, sports sign-ups and bake sales. Next thing you know, it’s Halloween, but not to worry! You still have three whole weeks until Thanksgiving. That thought is quickly followed by “Oh my God. I only have three weeks before I host Thanksgiving! I’ve got to get going on this!”
Do you see where I’m going? Blink and it’ll be January 2, 2018. While I would never discourage someone from reveling in holiday cheer, enjoying time off, and spending quality hours with friends and family, I want you to be cautious of how easy it is to slide through time. This is particularly true of the second half of the year.
Plan ahead, play later
Like many industries, the mortgage industry also experiences a last-quarter cyclical slump, thanks to the general public’s penchant for holiday celebrations. Am I making sense now? Summer distraction + cyclical slump = goals unmet, income unearned and opportunities unrealized. This is not the way to ring in 2018. Trust me, the week leading up to Labor Day will be met with feelings of resentment and guilt, not fond memories of summer’s end, if you squander the time, resources and abilities you can put to work today.
As Aesop points out, the ant is diligent, the grasshopper is reckless
Now is the time to prepare for the winter cold storm. Now is the time to line up meetings, reconnect with contacts, and brainstorm about creative, alternative ways to obtain new clients and team members. We all remember what happened to the grasshopper when the seasons changed. He thought the ants were paranoid when they went about stockpiling food in autumn, but that fun fiddle did him little good in the winter when he was cold, hungry and tired. It’s a timeless lesson, as most of Aesop’s Fables are, but it’s one that holds significant credence in our industry.
Do not wait for the holidays to reach out, book appointments, garner new business or hit your year-end goals. Many people will not be available then, and those who would otherwise have been open to taking meetings are likely to already have a full schedule by the time winter comes a’knockin