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The problem with motivation… | By: Multiple Speaker(s)

The problem with motivation…
By Vena Jones-Cox

Real estate entrepreneurs are BIG on motivation. We go to events to get pumped up. We listen to CDs by Brian Tracy and Zig Ziglar and a host of others. We write down affirmations and read them to ourselves every day.

Motivation definitely feels good—which is why so much real estate “education” contains a giant dose of motivation. When you get convinced that you can make millions in real estate, it’s a small step to deciding to spend $1,000 to learn how to do it.

The problem is, motivation is temporary, and doesn’t actually accomplish anything in and of itself. Getting motivated is like doing the dishes—they don’t stay done, and you have to do them again the next day. Motivation doesn’t buy properties, or get private money, or finish rehabs. In fact, I sometimes think that motivation becomes an end unto itself—we’re so obsessed with the feel-good state of motivation that we can spend all of our time trying to get and stay there, never actually doing the thing we’re trying to motivate ourselves to do.

So how do we “make” ourselves do the hard, or boring, or scary things that MUST be done to start (or grow) a real estate business? I’m going to say something that will seem very against-the-grain in our “if you visualize it, it will come” culture:


Yep, it takes sheer will power to call back that seller and tell him you can pay him half what he wants for his house. And to answer the phone for the umpteenth time, knowing that the person calling to rent your house will probably have the same 3 stupid questions (“How many bedrooms are in your 2 bedroom?”) and is probably another one who needs to move this weekend because he’s being set out on Monday. And to spend an hour creating a system for something you can actually do in 5 minutes, so that later on you can assign that thing to someone else and save an hour a week by never doing it again.

It’s from the discipline of doing what you don’t want to do, day in and day out, that you get the REAL rewards of real estate investing—like time to do stuff you actually enjoy, and the high of making the deal, and the self-respect of building something that no one else has ever built before: YOUR business.
Most of us are very disciplined in some aspect of our life: we’re religious about working out, or about keeping the house clean, or about walking the dog or attending every school function or about our jobs. We do what needs to be done, come rain, sleet, exhaustion, uncertainty, and, sometime, actual physical pain.

Sometimes, this discipline comes easily because we’re doing something we love. Sometimes, it’s a real effort, but we do it anyway because we understand how important it is.
So where are you going to get your discipline to build your real estate business? Probably from the wisdom that what you must do every day isn’t really an end unto itself—it’s for the larger goal of financial and personal freedom that let you do what you really love during the rest of your day.

Like most endeavors, investing in real estate is 80% grind, 10% horrible suckweasel discomfort, and 10% awesome. But keep in mind that the point of your business is NOT your business—it’s what your business allows you to do with the rest of your life.

Reprinted with permission of Vena Jones-Cox. To get more free articles and tips, subscribe at  (Akron Canton Real Estate Investors Association, Inc.) does not give legal, tax, economic, or investment advice. ACREIA disclaims all liability for the action or inaction taken or not taken as a result of communications from or to its members, officers, directors, employees and contractors. Each person should consult their own counsel, accountant and other advisors as to legal, tax, economic, investment, and related matters concerning Real Estate and other investments.   

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