It’s Monday again … they just seem to keep on coming. Instead of dreading Monday’s and the never ending barrage of problems which occurred over the weekend at your properties, start something new this week – start fresh. I’ll help you get going with a simple question.
Have you ever stopped to think about the things you are really passionate about?
I have and more so recently. I’m not sure if it’s my own personal way of drowning out all the negative in the world today (so I don’t fall down the nearest rabbit hole), or maybe it’s my way of keeping the passion alive for what I do. No matter what anyone else tells you, property management is a very stressful and emotionally taxing business. It’s also a very challenging, dynamic and rewarding business. Keeping up with all the changes in laws, regulations, building codes, and not to mention the changes in how we do business, such as virtual and self guided tours, social distancing (hard to remember when you’re trying to close the “sale” on that lease), etc…brain overload is an understatement these days. So how do you keep the passion alive at work?
Make a quick list of things in your personal life you are passionate about. My list includes cooking/baking, gardening, reading, and learning new things. Each one of my passions requires a certain amount of dedication and discipline in order for me to see results, progress, and a final completed work of art (yes, I think the cakes I make and the gardens I plant are a form of art). I put my heart and soul in everything I do and no job is too hard to tackle and complete. While I may get tired, frustrated, and on occasion annoyed because something didn’t turn out the way I thought it should, I don’t give up and I try again.
So, how do you apply your passion for other things to your job? Well, it may be different for everyone, but a few observations I’ve made over the years about people in the property management business may help you get the ball rolling in the right direction.
Most people, in my humble opinion, working in the property management industry are goal oriented and results driven people. They rarely sit still, never go to an actual lunch (you can tell what I’ve had for lunch by looking at papers on my desk), and they tackle most tasks with the energy of a Tasmanian Devil. They have a list of things to do and they don’t stop until it’s done.
However, we all have those days when we just can’t seem to get moving – things get so overwhelming you don’t know where to start so you keep reorganizing your to-do list as if that’s going to help get things done. Or, in other cases your to-do list has been put on the back burner because fifty million problems or crisis’ which have come out of nowhere and blindsided you. They’ve eaten up not only your attention, but all your energy and passion as well. Now what? How do you pull yourself up by your bootstraps and ignite the passion again?
Simple, take one of the things you are passionate about from your list and tackle just one thing on your work to-do list in the same fashion. For example, gardening is one of my passions. I love to not only get out there and plant flowers but also I love to put in new flower beds. It gives me a sense of accomplishment and it’s pretty to look at. Actually, gardening is my one big stress relief go to activities. My orthopedic surgeon would agree since he had to rebuild my shoulder a few years ago (apparently I was under entirely too much stress), now there’s not much left to destroy, although last week I think I did a very good job at undoing all the work he did. Oh well – I worked at the gardening with passion and the pace of a Tasmanian Devil.
I didn’t quit even though the heat index was over 100 degrees; I didn’t quit when my arms and shoulders hurt, or I couldn’t get that one hole dug deep enough. Nope – after all, I have plants to plant before they wilt and die (or the deer get them), I have a yard that needs to be maintained, and most importantly, flowers make everyone happy and they help relieve my stress…so I’ve planted a lot of them. My neighbors love what I’ve done and I have a great sense of accomplishment! Bottom line – just tackle things head on and don’t stop until it’s done.
Let’s say you have vacant units to walk but it’s hot. I mean, really? The vendors have turned them, your maintenance team says they are perfect so why should you go do your inspections? Well, one reason is to find that slow drip in the tub that no one else noticed, which you did and saved the unit from flooding (yes, this happened…the water in the tub was 1/4 inch from the top and from flooding the whole unit). Ta da! You accomplished something HUGE and saved a ton of money on having to replace things. What about the toilet that is running and no one reported it? Do you know one running toilet can add $150 per month to a water bill? But, you tackled the tedious job of walking units and saved some more money! You were determined, you ignited your passion, and the results paid off!
Here are some great quotes I found to help reignite your spark.
“Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you”. Oprah Winfrey
“Nothing is as important as passion. No matter what you want to do with your life, be passionate”. Jon Bon Jovi
Granted, it can be hard sometimes to keep the passion alive and I know that from personal experience. You’ve just got to be determined, resolute, and passionate about what you do. You need to understand too, that sometimes your passion may take you elsewhere and that’s OK as well.
I have a friend in property management who has been in this industry for over 20 years. She is one of the hardest working people I know, never says “no” to any challenge and in fact tackles them like a pro-football linebacker would tackle a quarterback. She’s all heart and puts everything she has into everything, even the smallest of tasks. What has come to impress me more than anything is her resolve to be passionate about what she does even though she may not like where she’s doing it. In my opinion, she’s the example we all need to follow. Never give up, never let up, and never let anything take away your passion.
Just remember, as long as you keep the passion going even though you may fall down from time to time, the rewards and sense of accomplishment make all the uphill battles worth the extra effort.
Put the passion back in your week by starting each Monday with fresh new ideas and an unmovable resolve to get the job done. You can do it – you were born to succeed!
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