Can You Afford to Take a Break?

Summer days may be giving you the temptation to squeeze in more half days, longer breaks, and lengthy vacations. But how about your work? Here's how to stay focused.

August 1, 2010

As the summer heats up, vacations become more frequent for clients, prospects, and you. It becomes easy to fall into a complacent attitude toward work.

But when you feel the pull of the beach or the golf course on a day you know you should work, here are a few ways to get back on track.

Review your goals for the year.

If you’ve noticed that you’ve been making days off too much of a habit lately, you might need to evaluate how in step you’ve been with your sales goals lately. Can you really afford to take the day off today? In other words, have you earned the right by your previous actions up until today through disciplined effort to take the day off?

Have you reached your goal for the year? Are you tracking toward your goal? Have you taken the number of listings you need for the year? Do you have the number of transactions pending and closed that you need?

When I am coaching a client, I'm most concerned about the number of listings compared to the goal, as well as the quality of the listing in terms of pricing and the pipeline of pendings the client has currently. If the client is a little behind in production but the pending pipeline is strong, as well as the pipeline of inventory, I’m confident they will catch up to their goal.

So ask yourself: Where are you at right now?

Consider how consistent you’ve been in your prospecting, lead followup, and lead generation calls in the last 30 days.

If you've been consistent in hitting the phones and making face-to-face appointments in the last 30 days, you won’t be slowed in your momentum or break your established habit with one day away.

However, if you’ve been erratic in these efforts, you might want to rethink that day off. One day off may only add to the problem that already exists: inconsistent effort and results.

You might think that one more day won’t hurt, but that’s exactly why you are where you are currently. The most important moment is now; the moment to change the outcome is now.

You can’t afford to add to the problem so, sorry, you can’t afford the day off.

Accept that a day off to recharge is sometimes needed.

We all need time off, and we all deserve time off. As real estate pros, we tend to make ourselves available to our clients and prospects 24-7. But we can burn out quickly if we don’t take time off regularly. Sometimes we need to let ourselves take that day off.

But make it count. When was the last time you took a whole day off where you shut off your cell phone and didn’t answer it? When were you not “on call” or interrupted when you were with your family?

Maybe today needs to be that day.

For most real estate professionals, we have too many of what I call “half days.” These are days where we are half in and half out of the game. We are half at work and half at home. I think we kid ourselves when we do this, and actually spend most of the time in the land of neither.

The secret to success is to be all in at all times. If you decide to be at work, be all there. If you decide to take the day off, be all there as well.

So if the beach is calling and you've earned it, go enjoy what you earned without guilt!

 Dirk Zeller is a speaker, author and CEO of Real Estate Champions. His company trains more than 350,000 real estate professionals each year through live events, online training, self-study programs and newsletters. He's written several articles and books, including Your First Year in Real Estate, Success as a Real Estate Agent for Dummies and Telephone Sales for Dummies. To learn more, visit