26 May Managing Work/Life Balance as a Real Estate Professional
Achieving and maintaining work/life balance has become increasingly difficult for professionals in a number of industries, including real estate. Weekend work can be standard for some, while roles like Property Managers and Leasing Managers can feel like they need to be on call 24/7 to manage their portfolios.
For many in the profession, finding an even balance between work and home life might sound like a fantasy or a ‘nice to have’. But it is, in fact, crucial to maintaining long-term health, wellbeing and career longevity no matter what industry you’re in. Managing an equilibrium between your work and home life allows you to be your best with your family and loved ones, your clients and colleagues.
In this article, we’ll explore ways to improve work/life balance for real estate professionals and how to ensure a long, rewarding career.
Find a Job That Works For You
Many of us are trained from an early age to think of a steady, reliable job as the Holy Grail. But things have changed and it’s important for professionals to put themselves first when designing their perfect job.
So, how do you figure out what your dream job looks like? Working with a specialist real estate recruitment company can save you a lot of time upfront and possible heartache in the long run. They know all about your industry and the challenges you face on a day-to-day basis including the pressures of KPIs, hitting sales targets and burnout. They also have their finger on the pulse of industry trends, so can provide timely, honest advice about the best job for your current stage of life.
Experienced recruiters will take the time to get to know you, and find out what makes you tick both personally and professionally. By matching you with a role that’s suited to you, they are inevitably reducing the amount of stress you could face day-to-day and help you to prioritise aspects of your life including professional goals, family commitments and things you like to do in your spare time.
Here at Real Estate Career Developers, we see behind your job title and seek to understand the person that lies within. We want to help you figure out the best job for you right now, and can also help you plan your career into the future.
Schedule and Protect Your Personal Time
We cannot overstate the importance of taking regular breaks each day. It might sound obvious, but when you’re racing from appointment to appointment, or task to task, these things are easy to neglect. Whether you’re a Leasing Consultant, Property Manager, Business Development Manager or Receptionist, keeping some moments of your day off-limits from your job is essential for your physical and mental health.
To keep your mind and body refreshed, use your dedicated break times to get away from your regular environment. Go for a walk with colleagues, get some fresh air, eat your lunch outside or find a quiet place to read your book. Even if you’re working away from the office and visiting clients or properties, it’s important to ringfence some time for yourself.
Outside of work, consider setting up a healthy sleep schedule, following a balanced diet and spending quality time with family. It might also help to engage in broader interests and hobbies and socialise with friends outside the real estate profession, to give you a healthy mental distance from the daily grind.
As a final tip, make the most of your leave entitlements. Taking a mental health day or a holiday is a great way to give your mind and body a proper reset.
Keep Your Workload Under Control
With the current shortage of skilled real estate professionals, you’re likely to encounter situations where your workload risks becoming too large to sustainably manage. In these situations, learning to delegate and set boundaries will do wonders for you, although these are soft skills that require some practice.
While it is hard for many people to say ‘no’ at work, avoiding the word completely has its consequences. In fact, it’s an important part of any professional’s vocabulary. Don’t be afraid to tell colleagues when you can’t take something else on and delegate when it’s viable or necessary.
Be prepared to talk to your supervisor when KPIs and targets are getting unmanageable. The last thing you want to be doing is taking that stress home to your family, and worrying about your “to do” list when you’re off the clock.
Clear Your Mind and Refocus on the Present
Another key element of keeping a healthy work/life balance is to be mentally present, wherever you are. This means compartmentalisation – not taking work home with you and not allowing personal issues to distract you while at work. It’s easier said than done, but focusing on the present is the definition of balancing your work and life. As with any simple-yet-hard technique for improving wellbeing, it gets better with training.
Instead of dividing your attention, devote your mental energy fully to the task you have at hand – whether you’re speaking to a client, helping your children with homework or enjoying a movie night with a special someone.
One way to hone this skill is to try a form of meditation or mindfulness, even if just for a few minutes each day. Incorporating this practice into your day can significantly calm your mind and increase your patience.
Recognise the Symptoms That Can Lead to Burnout
Hopefully, if you’re reading this you’re not experiencing burnout yet. But it’s vital to recognise the warning signs, as these are interconnected with how you’re balancing work and life. Knowing the signs can help you make fast adjustments to your work/life balance to treat the problem early and spot any issues your colleagues might be having as well.
The core symptoms of burnout are:
- Feeling depleted of energy or constantly exhausted
- Noticing a growing mental distance from your job
- Feelings of negativism or cynicism towards your work
- Reduced professional efficacy
Other common symptoms include:
- Depression and low mood
- Irritability and anger
- Sleep disturbances
- Lack of motivation or passion
- Lack of concentration
- Memory loss or brain fog
- Withdrawal from others
- Physical symptoms such as aches, headaches, nausea and low libido
If you have several of these symptoms, it’s likely you’re experiencing some form of burnout and should take immediate steps to address and manage the issue, starting with some of the steps outlined above.
A good work/life balance might sound elusive, but taking a few determined steps in the right direction can improve both your work and personal life in countless ways. Think about the small actions you can take first and start building on them to get the results you want. If you find some issues are persisting, it’s worthwhile looking at the big picture – by reviewing your current job, creating a potential career plan and adjusting your goals.
Ready for a change of workplace scenery? If you’re thinking about finding a role that is better suited to your lifestyle and values, our team of real estate recruitment specialists can help you make your next change. Get in touch with us today.