People who struggle to grow, also struggle to let go.
Most of us go through our lives accumulating things…habits, friends, commitments and responsibilities.
The problem surfaces when we find ourselves resisting big growth or changes that could be great for us, simply because we view it as an accumulation of more things to do. Eventually, to accumulate more becomes impossible if we don’t also let go of things at the same time.
Reflecting on 2015, I did indeed let go of a lot of things! For purposes of this letter, I’ll focus on business. This past year, I let go of managing my own emails, scheduling appointments, incoming “reactive” phone calls, marketing, and even much of the day-to-day management of my Mortgage Advisors except in areas where my unique abilities are truly needed to help them.
Maybe more important than anything else, I recognized the difference between being in charge, and being in control. As the leader, I’m in charge of everything, yet I no longer need to be in control of everything. I find that the need to feel in control can be the biggest thing holding back most potentially great Mortgage Advisors and sales professionals in general.
For example, when I ask a Loan Officer (insert any business owner or sales professional here), what his or her goals are for the upcoming year, the initial answer is always bigger and brighter, with excitement in their voice. Then, I can almost count the seconds before they allow the self-doubt and mental obstacles to start creeping in. This becomes a self-sabotaging habit for people before I have even had the chance to say anything!
The reason being is that as soon as they voice a goal, or a future that is bigger and better than where they are today, they immediately begin also thinking of all of the additional tasks, teammates, systems, and efforts that will be required to achieve the goal. In other words, they view everything from the perspective of accumulation. In reality, if I have a goal to say, add five new Realtor partners in 2015, I may need to also let go of some existing relationships that may not be as fruitful. One cannot simply just keep adding pillars of business while also still committing the same time and attention to the previous pillars already in place.
So which comes first, letting go so I can grow (myself or my organization)? Or growing myself and my organization until I am finally forced to let go for fear of collapsing from exhaustion?
The answer really is up to you. I can share my experience though, since my mortgage business at Aspire Mortgage Group grew 200% in 2015, and we tripled the number of Advisors and team members contributing to our success. If I hadn’t let go of many of the things listed above, I would not have had the mental or physical capacity to envision and then achieve the tremendous growth we’ve enjoyed.
What did YOU let go of in 2015? And looking ahead, what WILL you let go of in 2016 to make room for amazing new things that will shape your Bigger, Better Future™?