There have been more than a few days over the years that I have wanted to give up this crazy rollercoaster ride of entrepreneurialism running a transaction coordinator company.
There was the time my website was under attack here at the Transaction Coordinator Academy – really, it was. For some reason, a computer bot was trying to login and they were making 100 or so attempts in just seconds. This much traffic to our little site was more than it could handle, and it would shut down. Of course like most of us with websites, we don’t know it’s down until someone tells us, like a client trying to log in or make a purchase, ugh! – or until we’re heading over to the site to do some work to it. Finally, with the help of my team, we managed to stop the attacks and, knock on wood, the site hasn’t crashed in a very long time.
Then there was the time a competitor thought a great way to drum up business for their Transaction Coordinator company was to reach out to my clients. How, you may ask? Well, she sent a private message to each person on Facebook who left a testimonial for my company. Her private message to them went something along the lines of – I see you’re familiar with what a transaction coordinator can do for your business – she went on to say that she was confident she could beat my prices and provide extras. Thankfully, I have some pretty awesome clients who quickly let me know of this and also let her know they were not interested.
Oh, and another was receiving a call from my banker to let me know my account was mysteriously overdrawn by $4,000 (I wrote about that here).
I have had employees quit in the middle of the day leaving a mess. I have had phone systems crash and us not be able to make or receive calls for days. I have had a team member’s husband call me on a Monday morning to tell me one of our beloved transaction coordinators had a heart attack and was in the hospital. Hurricanes, tragic auto accidents on the way to closing, and even lenders who ceased operations in the 2008 housing meltdown the day of closing when three buyers were set to sign and move into new condos.
I could go on and on, but I won’t – because each day something horrible happened, each day I was challenged and tested to a point I wasn’t sure I could handle, something awesome also happened. Random checks I had long since thought I’d never be able to collect on magically showed up in the mail. Clients left kind words on my voice mail to tell me how happy they were with the services my team provides and gave us bonuses. A new client signs up, from out of nowhere and without anything more than a quick conversation about the fees and sends over several new contracts. A knock at the door and a dozen long stem roses are delivered by an agent thanking me for helping her get 3 transactions to the closing table all on the same Friday.
It is easy to get bogged down with all the negativity in life, I think it’s even easier to do so with our businesses. After all there is a lot of folks trying to tell us how easy it is if we just buy their 5-Step Formula, BARF!! So, if it’s not all roses and fat bank accounts while sipping a fruity drink at the beach we must be doing something wrong, right? I say, heck no! Being in business is tough, there is no doubt about it, but it is also ever so rewarding. Most of us sadly focus on what we need to fix, far less than we focus on all the amazing things we have done. So, to plan ahead for one of those days where you think you just can’t do this anymore, I encourage you to make a brag book. This is not something to share with anyone, just a journal or even a document on your computer where you can write down celebrations. I bet you have a few right now in your head, you have forgotten about that have happened just this week. Your brag book is a place where you can record your wins, and the challenges you have overcome, where you can celebrate small milestones and huge accomplishments. It’s not where your grammar or punctuation need to be perfect, it just needs to be legible.
Then, the next time you have one of those super shitty days, you know the ones – before quitting, open up your brag book. Start reading all the things you have written – all the things you’ve done, the challenges you’ve overcome, the wins and celebrations. I bet you an expensive cup of fancy coffee from Starbucks you will immediately be in a different place emotionally and energetically. Will it make the super shitty situation go away, probably not, but it will give you the superpower you need to get through this, like all the other things you have gotten through before.
Go ahead, make that book, brag to yourself as often as possible and let me know how it goes.