If you’re playing at the top end of the real estate game, you know the pressure to perform can be relentless. Regardless of how successful you may be, the stress can wear you down over time. Yes, if you’re a Vulcan 7 client you’re luckier than most because you can work with superior tools to make your job easier. But you still need to make the calls, still need to deal with demanding clients, still need to face rejection on a daily basis.
Vulcan 7 is proud to be on the forefront of helping top agents be more successful through our advanced lead generation and CRM software. With today’s post, we’re going to shift to the “inner tools” you need to master in order to take your game to even higher levels.
Nearly 10% of Americans now incorporate some sort of meditation practice into their daily lives. Countless studies have been conducted, linking meditation to, among other benefits:
- Pain reduction
- Lower blood pressure
- Reduced levels of anxiety and depression
- Improved cognitive functioning
A 2012 study indicated that adults who meditate regularly increase their brain’s ability to process information faster; especially important for those of you who believe you have mastered the art of multi-tasking. It’s simple to start a meditation practice. Just take 15 minutes (mornings are often best) and sit upright in a hard back chair (no sofas!). Close your eyes and simply follow the rhythm of your breath. At first, your “monkey mind” will wander. Just recognize it, then bring your attention back to your breath. Stick to this for at least 30 days (which is how long it takes a habit to take hold). It will eventually get easier and you’ll be able to meditate for longer periods of time.
A “cousin” of meditation, deep breathing is something you can do just about anywhere. Deep breathing exercises have been shown to decrease your metabolism, slow the heart rate, lower blood pressure and increase levels of nitrous oxide in your blood system. Deep breathing also gives you a sense of peace and well-being. There are many different types of breathwork you can explore. YouTube has hundreds of videos and you might want to experiment with the different approaches to breath work. You can also consult with a breathwork practitioner in your area. What’s great about deep breathing is, you can do it anywhere, particularly in the car between appointments.
Take time throughout the day (especially in the car between appointments or during a break from working the phones) to “check in” with yourself. Mentally scan your body, starting from the top of your head and working down to your toes. Note where there is tightness, especially in areas around the neck and shoulder where we hold the most stress. When you’re in the car, notice your hands on the steering wheel. When you’re in your office, just sit and feel yourself in the chair or standing at your desk. Turn off the radio and put your phone on vibrate so nothing interrupts this moment of self-awareness. Five minutes of conscious presence several times a day can be transformative.
Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies. A good yuck releases endorphins, promoting an overall sense of well-being. If you’re at home at night, turn off the cable news channels, flip on Netflix or Hulu and find a sitcom or comedy film. You can also find lots of great stand-up routines on YouTube. Or (and this may sound stupid, but it works) you can just force yourself to laugh, just to laugh! The physical act of laughing delivers all of the physiological benefits listed above. Of course, if you are going to laugh out loud by yourself, it might be best to do it in a place where there aren’t many people.
LISTEN TO MUSIC
Listening to your favorite tunes releases dopamine, which can translate to enhanced emotional states of excitement and joy. Music lowers stress and improves overall health and can also aid in helping you to sleep better. Research also links music listening to reductions in anxiety and depression. And for those of you who spend much of your day in the car, researchers have discovered that listening to much can positively impact your mood while driving.
Gratitude is much more than saying “thank you” to the barista after grabbing your vanilla latte. Research shows that people who practice gratitude have more and richer relationships, improved physical health, enhanced psychological health, increased empathy and reduced levels of aggression. Truly grateful people sleep better and have higher self esteem. It’s easy to begin practicing gratitude on a regular basis. Simply keep a small notebook on your nightstand and before you go to sleep right down five things that happened that day for which you are grateful. (“I’m really grateful I got to read this blog on Vulcan 7”).
We’re all driven to succeed, some more than others. But “driving” can only get you so far. You have to step off, take a breath and look inside to find that extra energy that will separate you from the rest of the pack. These six mindfulness tips are a good place to begin.