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Stress Busters for Realtors: Ways to Unwind in Today's Tough Market

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By : M Shane    99 or more times read
Since the housing boom burst, many realtors around the country are struggling to make ends meet. With houses slow to sell and buyers hesitant to enter the market or unable to acquire funding, realtors have been forced to reassess their ability to stay in the game. While creativity and determination certainly contribute to an agent's long-term success, so does the ability to cope with stress.

The first thing an overwhelmed agent needs to do is find an outlet for his tension. When job stress builds up, anxiety and depression can quickly follow. Both of these disorders can reduce motivation, clear-headedness and hope for the future. Moreover, excessive worry is communicated to the client, no matter how hard we try to hide it.

Exercise is often the last thing that a person with depression wants to do, but it's also one of the most effective ways to beat the blues and increase energy. Whether it be yoga, kickboxing, or belly dancing, participating in some type of fitness regime gives your stress somewhere to go. You can sweat it out, punch it out, or laugh it out.

Hitting the gym is also an excellent way to break up the day between work and home. Your family will appreciate the fact that you've gotten your workday headaches out of your system, and are now able to focus all your attention on them. Your clients will also feel the difference too, as you gain more energy and achieve better balance in your life.

If you've been paying a lot more attention to your job than to your physical health, then you should start slow. Begin with a 20-minute walk every day, just to get your blood pumping, and your limbs moving again. Walking is also a wonderful meditative practice, allowing your mind to wander. In fact, many people find that their best ideas come to them while walking or meditating.

In addition to moving your body, it's also terribly important to eat right. Busy agents often rely on take-out food because of its convenience. Unfortunately, eating out all the time improperly fuels the body. The lack of nutrients and the high sugar, high calorie content of most take-out meals makes it difficult for your body to work at its best. If you don't take care of your body, it won't be able to take care of you.

Especially during times of stress, we tend to take shallow breaths. We need to slow down and become aware of each breath that goes in and out. Place your hand on your stomach when you breathe to feel as the air fills you up and empties out. Go slowly, counting 1-2-3 as you go in, and again as you go out. Breathing mindfully can be done in your car between showings, at your desk while writing emails, or any other time you need to take a moment.

Anxiety involves worrying about the future or thinking about mistakes of the past, while checking in with your body requires you to be in the present moment. You can't control the future or change the past, so focus your energy on 'right now'. You can do this by simply focusing on your breath and by noticing any sensations happening in your body.

Are you feeling tense? If so, where? Breathe deeply into the tension, and just allow yourself to feel whatever your body's trying to tell you—without judgment. Don't try to fix your feelings, just sit with them for a moment or two. If you learn how to sit with anxiety, you'll be much less likely to turn to destructive forms of relaxation like alcohol, drugs, or overeating.

If you try these techniques and still feel overwhelmed, it may be time to seek outside help. A counselor or psychotherapist can provide you with a safe place to express your frustration, fears, and insecurities. They can also give you tools to help you deal with difficult times. An occasional trip to a massage therapist can also do wonders for your peace of mind.

Be patient and kind to yourself while you face the tough road ahead. Taking the time to treat your body and mind isn't indulgence—it's necessary for you to maintain a clear head when you're under pressure. Lean on loved ones and focus on feeling better in the present. Soon, the market will shift in your favor, and you'll be ready for it.

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