“The Hero’s Journey”

Last week while driving to my mammogram appointment (post about that story on my Instagram), I was listening to an episode of Brene Brown’s podcast that a friend had recommended (it was either

Martha Holland Mason or Jeni Kiehl Harmon, both have the best recommendations!).
The episode is called “Day 2”, and it aired on September 2nd on her “Unlocking Us” podcast (it does not seem to have an episode number).
Brene was talking about Day 2 in the context of 3 day seminars or intensives that she would do.
She talked about day 1 being everyone’s favorite. The “sparkle of possibility”, the excitement of what lies ahead. And then day 3 seems to bring relief and happiness as the participants could see the finish line. However day 2, no matter what they did, no matter how they tried to switch it up or modify, day 2 was always really, really hard. It was the day they really had to do the work, and usually were feeling a lot less energetic and a little worn down.
Then she talked to a friend in the movie industry. They discussed the same thing and referred to it as Act 2. It was everyone’s least favorite. It was the hardest part to form the characters through, and just in general was more difficult and less enjoyable than the rest of the process.
So I was thinking about this in the context of our real estate careers (you knew I was going to bring it around, didn’t you?). Day 1 is like when you are new or newer to the business. So much excitement and energy. Anything is possible. This is actually what I have loved so much about being with my brokerage with a high percentage of new or newer agents. So much energy, excitement and fresh ideas.
Then you have “Day 3” … agents who are on their way out, and they can see it. Feel it. Taste it. Retirement is around the corner. They’ve been there, done that, and happy to move on to the next phase of their life.
That leaves us with Day 2. The part that lasts the longest. You’ve got some experience under your belt. You’ve (hopefully) had some success. But it’s hard. You’re tired. You can’t see how you are going to get from here to the “finish” (if you ever will).
Here’s what is interesting. In the episode, Brene talked a lot about “The Hero’s Journey”, and why day 2 is the hardest. Her finding is that this middle part of anything is in part so difficult because you have exhausted every solution or every way to continue to grow or get business or manage your business in a way that is COMFORTABLE to you. You have to try new things. Do new things. Learn new things. Stretch beyond your comfort level to move through this part. When you don’t, you stumble backwards again and again.
Does this sound familiar? You’ve gotten to a great point in your business, but maybe you are overwhelmed. You need to do something new. Leverage help. Perhaps build a team or at least learn to refer out, but it’s all uncomfortable.
I’ve been there. The first time it happened to me, I quit. I was so tired. I would sit at my computer late at night trying to get caught up, running around with clients and on appointments all day, and fantasize about an office job. One where I could show up at a certain time, go home at a certain time, and had a paycheck coming in consistently. What I really needed to do at that time was build my own team, but I didn’t know how. It seemed too hard. I knew more about what I didn’t want it to look like than what I did and so I was stuck there in my “comfort level”, which was becoming more uncomfortable by the day.
So when a managing broker opportunity presented itself to me, I took it. Practically lunged at it. It was the perfect solution, or so I though (it wasn’t). I learned a lot. Lets call this Day 2.5. In time what I needed to do (it was still the same thing, I just needed the right person to do it with) became so clear, so evident that I was practically pushed into it. It was the best thing that has ever happened to me and my career. (Vicky Noufal ❤️).
That was 5 years ago yesterday, and my Platinum Group Real Estate Team at Pearson Smith Realty is truly what I always needed all along. I feel like I am solidly starting day 3 (you know these are metaphorical, right? And each of these “days” last for years …) and it’s good. In large part because I’ve learned the value of getting uncomfortable.
What “day” are you on in your real estate business?
(Photo from our 2019 retreat. Missing a few of us in this pic, and missing being together even more!)

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