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Maintaining work-life balance


The self-employed freedom of working as a real estate agent has plenty of perks. But with it comes the difficulty in defining work hours from your personal time. Often the lines blur and agents find themselves taking calls during dinner or running out to a client’s home for an emergency. If you’re finding it difficult to carve out sufficient “me time”, here are a few tips.

Getting help when you need it

When you’re first starting out in the industry and building your list of contacts and clients, it makes sense to be solely responsible for every aspect of your business. But if you’ve reached a point where you’re splitting hairs crunching numbers for your taxes or spending ages finding the best angles to photograph a property, it may be time to seek specialized, external assistance. It can be difficult to ask for help or justify hiring someone to do work that you could technically do. But when these specialized tasks take time away from doing something you enjoy more and are good at, like interacting with clients, it makes sense to seek out a professional accountant or photographer (and so on) to help out.

Set aside time off

Real estate agents can find themselves on-call 24/7, even on evenings and weekends. It’s important to give yourself enough “me time” to reflect, decompress and catch up with loved ones. If taking time off makes you feel anxious, plan these days well in advance and book them in your calendar so that you can complete all the tasks on your to-do list beforehand and give clients or vendors a heads up that you’ll be taking some time to yourself. Since you have the ability to create your own schedule, you can also be strategic in which days you select, for example, taking more time off during the slower selling season or a day of the week that is typically the slowest.

Create definitions between work and play

Consider setting up a separate email inbox and phone line for your business. This way you can create a boundary between work communications and those regarding your personal life. When you do finally get those precious days off, having separate inboxes and cell phones for business makes it easy to detach from work without disconnecting from family and friends.

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