When people ask me how long I’ve been “selling real estate” my answer is always:
I don’t sell real estate.From the time I started my business as a residential real estate agent, I never viewed my role as that of a “salesperson.” In my opinion, the business I am really in is coaching. I coach my clients through major life transitions, most often when they need to move.
Every move is, in itself, a major life transition. And often, the move is a byproduct of some other life change: marriage, children, divorce, death, career change, or just a need to shake things up.
Why Change is So Hard
We tend to resist change, even when we bring it on ourselves. Our need for variety is counterbalanced by our need for certainty and stability.
Change in any area can feel disorienting, but no change moreso than changing your home.
You home is where you put down your roots. It’s where you lay the physical foundation for your life. Moving from your home is a literal uprooting.
Fundamental to my role with my clients is to help them navigate these changes in a way that leaves them feeling supported and grounded, even as they go through this literal uprooting of their lives.
Agent of Change
“Agent of Change” is a term that gets overused a lot in the coaching and transformational industries, but it fits what I do. Clients come to me when they’re at the threshold of change. Typically that change involves a need to move, but not always.
Sometimes it is clear to me that a client needs to make a different change first: in their career, job, relationship, family dynamic, or even mindset, thoughts, and habits. A few years ago I expanded my practice to also work with clients who desire to make non-move changes.
Change is change. We rarely make a move in isolation. What I do with any client is the same process whether they are buying or selling a home, or changing jobs, leaving a relationship, or making any other big decisions.
The Cycle of Creation and Destruction
It’s fair to say that in the world of residential real estate agents, I am an outlier in how I view my role. Many people tell me that they never heard a real estate agent define the business in this way.
They think being a real estate agent is about selling property. As I explain to them, practically speaking, if a client doesn’t feel ready to make a move, there’s no home for me to sell.
What does “ready” mean in the context of change?
In the most simple terms, it means being willing to let go of what you have and where you are.
Let go to grow, as the saying goes.
Letting go and releasing attachments fit into the cycle of creation and destruction, which I write about often.
Destruction is part of creation. This is obvious in the creative process. How does it fit into the real estate process?
Letting Go = Letting Go of Expectations
In the real estate process, buyers and sellers must let go of many things. Not just the obvious like a home or money, but the deeper things.
Ultimately, all letting go is ultimately about letting go of expectations.
In the real estate process, those expectations include what the price or value should be, the timeline to closing, and even the expectation that someone who lists her apartment wants to sell it or that someone who makes an offer on the apartment really wants to buy it.
These are the sticky parts of the process. Finding the home or letting go of your home or money is the easy part.
Learn to let go of what doesn’t serve you, and in that, you will find freedom.