You’ve got 365 days to work with in 2023. Whatever your circumstances, writes Teresa Boardman, it all comes down to what you decide to do with them.

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No one knows what the new year will bring which is why we need to be prepared for anything. It doesn’t hurt to have a plan, but it is also important to stay flexible. The people who do well will be those who can be resilient and those who can deal with ambiguity as needed.

There are always opportunities but sometimes we get so focused on trying to make things work the way that they used to that we miss them.

The people I know who got laid off in the past few months are all people that I could not even imagine getting laid off. Some of them believed that they were impervious to layoffs, and this is a first for them.

Most of the people I know who have joined the ranks of the newly unemployed are over 55 and a few are over 60. They never imagined that they could be let go and for some, this is the first time.

Everyone who is working for someone else should keep in mind that anyone with a job can lose it through no fault of their own. The same applies to clients. We have already seen some real estate transactions canceled because the buyers lost their jobs.

It isn’t always possible to stay positive, but we need to try.

Through decades of experiencing career ups and downs, including layoffs myself, I have learned how to cope with almost any kind of setback. I don’t believe adversity makes us stronger or that everything happens for a reason.

I do believe in myself and my ability to find work.

Here are some tips for staying positive and making the most of 2023 no matter what it brings:

  1. No matter how slow business gets, stay on a regular schedule. Get started in the morning just like you would on a day filled with appointments.
  2. Stay away from anyone who is negative or who has given up. Stick with positive people.
  3. Treat each day like it is a golden opportunity and let go of what did or did not work out yesterday.
  4. Plan at least one full day off each week and schedule an activity that you enjoy. Use it as your reward for working hard. Some weeks there are no other rewards for hard work.
  5. Never — and I mean never — stop prospecting. Call past clients, send them emails, ask them how they are doing, write blog posts and stay active on LinkedIn. The same applies to people looking for work. Always be prospecting.
  6. Start each day with a to-do list and check it off as you go. Keep working and stay focused.
  7. Have lunch with a friend once a week. (Make it a friend who does not sell real estate, when possible.)
  8. Get plenty of exercise and enough sleep. Both help in combating stress and in keeping the energy level high and blood pressure low.
  9. Don’t dwell on the buyer who got away or the listings that another agent got. In sales, we usually hear “no” a few times before we hear the “yes.”
  10. Don’t buy anything expensive — especially anything that requires monthly payments. Avoid using credit cards. Review and reduce current payments.
  11. Be honest with family members about finances or money concerns.
  12. Let friends, neighbors and past clients know that you are looking for more business. It is like looking for a job. People need to know that you are still in business and that you have some excess capacity.
  13. Go to local networking events. Many are free, and they are opportunities to meet people, get out of the office and learn.
  14. Learn from your mistakes but don’t blame yourself for everything that goes wrong. We don’t have total control over everything at all times; we just like to think we do.
  15. Use any excess time wisely. Take a class or read a book to learn new skills or ideas.
  16. Take some time to update your professional bio wherever it appears online. You can always find ways to improve it.
  17. Set some sales goals for the rest of the year and start on next year’s business plan.
  18. Find something to laugh about every day and pass it along.
  19. Find a volunteer activity in the community, something you can do once or twice a week for a few hours. Maybe just help a neighbor.
  20. Don’t beat yourself up if you did not reach your sales goals for the month. Just ask yourself if you did your best. If the answer is no, start doing your best today. If you did your best, keep in mind that we don’t always reach our goals.

The one thing that always makes me happy, no matter what is going on in my life, is doing something for someone else.

All that we know for sure is that 2023 is going to be a year. It is up to each of us to decide what we are going to do with it.

Teresa Boardman is a Realtor and broker/owner of Boardman Realty in St. Paul, Minnesota. She is also the founder of StPaulRealEstateBlog.com.

Teresa Boardman
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