Take these steps to balance your focus between yourself and your family and reaching your end-of-year business goals.
Woman wearing Santa hat and sleeping on desk

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Some cities and towns already are softening the night sky with trees dressed in twinkling lights. Entryways soon will be adorned with garlands and wreaths. The world around you is providing the comfort of a cozy night drinking hot chocolate by the fireplace. So, why now—during the most wonderful time of the year—do you feel more stress than peace and joy?

For many, the holidays are a break from the day-to-day grind. But for real estate professionals, it's often a time when their schedule gets busier than ever. Many agents have to work even harder through the holiday season to ensure the parties and get-togethers don't intrude on their business-building activities to keep their pipeline full. The truth is, as a real estate pro, you make money only when you work.

So, if you're feeling a sense of obligation to continue working through the holidays—and worried that work will distract you when you need to be present with family—there are ways you can better structure your time.

  1. Get yourself ready for the year ahead. Take some time to reflect on your business in 2022 and prepare for next year by completing your business plan. A business plan promotes productivity, enabling you to set goals and put them into action while also holding yourself accountable to business-building activities throughout the year. This creates consistency, even during busier times.  
  2. Use social events as networking opportunities. You'll be attending a lot of holiday parties where you can reconnect with your sphere. Find a way to remind those around you that you're preparing your business for the next year and welcome referrals. This is also your chance to introduce what you do to those who don't know you. Don't be shy to promote yourself as an agent when you're socializing. Find a way that works for you and stick with it through the holiday events you plan to attend.  
  3. Make sure to account for time off. Use your business plan to structure time off. Establish clear-cut boundaries so you can enjoy some downtime. An important piece of keeping your business strong during the holidays is honoring what you need to do to continue running it in a healthy way. Sometimes, it's more efficient to take a break and come back to work fully focused rather than push through the busyness. 
  4. Prepare backup. There are going to be times during the holiday season when a client needs your guidance. If you're on vacation or going off the grid to focus on quality time with loved ones, have a system so your clients still get attention. Partner with another agent who can step in and answer questions for your clients while you're away. Having a support system in place for yourself and your clients is in the best interests of all parties anyway.  
  5. Try new marketing strategies. Since your business may look different during the holidays, go outside of your comfort zone to generate leads. Have fun trying a new marketing campaign or using a new, advanced method of connecting with your clients. For example, showcase a modern holiday recipe on social media and in your newsletters or mailers. Incorporate some of your favorite things about the season in your marketing to connect in a new way to past, current or prospective clients. Sometimes, marketing your business is as simple as highlighting yourself and the things that make you, well, you.  
  6. Continue a self-care routine. Running a real estate business has a ton of moving parts during a normal time of year, so adding in the pressures of the holidays can make stress spike. It's important to keep healthy habits during these times. It may seem easier to cut back on your daily 20-minute walk to fit in more work. However, sticking to your normal exercise routine gives you a break to care for yourself and decompress. Even if you shorten your self-care activities to accommodate other events, just don't cut them out completely.

Maintaining as normal a routine as possible during the holidays will give you the sense of being in tune with your business goals while being present in your personal life. An important component of being a real estate agent is agility—shifting focus at different times of the year and preparing ahead of time will help you build and maintain a thriving business.