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Some Thanksgiving Thoughts

Nov 17, 2011

Posted by

Charles Dahlheimer

Recognized as one of the industrys leading visionaries, Dahlheimer is publisher of The Real Estate Professional magazine and The Real Estate Executive Summary.  He co-authored Real Es Read more

How easy it is to get caught up in all the negativity and unrest—whether iin the international news or just the nagging problems we encounter trying to hold our business together—there are lots of things that can drag our attitude down.

In an e-mail this morning, one of my dear friends in the real estate business reminded me that in our all too busy world, filled with instant texting and tweets, it is easy to get caught up in the sad and negative news in the world.  She quoted the wise words of Dr. Milton Erickson, “Life will bring you pain all by itself.  Your responsibility is to create joy.”   

So with Thanksgiving just around the corner, what an ideal time to pause for just a few moments and think about all the good things that we often tend not to notice as the day’s pressures weigh upon us.

The world is not going to hell in a handbasket.  Wars, strife, civil unrest have existed throughout recorded history.  We just notice them more now in our age of instant information.  And the hungry beast of the 24-hour news networks tends to magnify the problem, as news directors are constantly battling to fill the time. 

Great things are happening worldwide…and right here at home.  Democratic ideals and the principles of freedom are toppling totalitarian states.  True, there will be conflict along the way, and in some cases, equally evil regimes may evolve.  But that’s only in some cases.

At home, we have are coming to grips with financial issues.  That creates some hardship, no doubt.  But the end result could be a fiscally responsible government and populace.  And that’s great news for future generations.  America has withstood some difficult times, but the general mood seems to be on the upswing, and people are finally beginning to focus on what is really important.

There have been many scandals over the past several years.  But the fact is, there have always been.  The good news is that we are becoming sensitive and caring enough to notice them—and to take action.  Bad behavior, regardless of social or economic status,  will no longer be tolerated.

Charitable foundations have moved in to pick up much of the slack when government funding dried up.  And that trend will continue.  The private sector is responding—and will do better with this as the economy improves.

The turmoil in the housing industry has actually emphasized the importance of the Realtor in the transaction.  But the importance of that Realtor’s knowledge and skills has also been highlighted.  If you’re one of the “experts,” you know how gratifying it is to be able to help solve homeowners’ problems.  If you’re new to the business, there is so much education available at your fingertips.  Whether it’s selecting certain areas in which to specialize (e.g. luxury homes, singles, first time buyers, seniors) or fine-tuning basic listing and selling skills (representing buyers, representing sellers, negotiating, etc.), there are many designation and certification programs available, whether you want to learn with your peers in a classroom setting or to catch some online instruction on the Internet..

But, back to our day to day living:  My friend reminded me that if we have a job, a roof over our head and food on our table, we should be thankful for that.  There are many who do not.

This year more than ever we need to be aware of those less fortunate, and do what we can to help them. “An attitude of gratitude and a generous heart can definitely help make Thanksgiving a happier time for everyone,” she concluded. We might decide to try this ourselves. Maybe that will help us feel better about the world and ourselves during this holiday season.