Go out and make your own economic recovery!
Housing is up, then it’s down. Markets have peaked, stocks have bottomed, prices have surged, energy supplies have slowed. Cash, credit, investors, Boomers, pent-up, paused, interest rates, taxes. Credits, cancelled, and looming cliffs.
At some point you just want to yell STOP!
Because none of it matters.
Let me prove it. I’ll use one of our favorite industries: real estate.
In 2012, nearly 5 million housing transactions occurred; that’s roughly average for the last 20 years. In 2012, thousands of brokers “had their best year” – not just since the downturn, but ever! At the micro level, I know one realtor personally who received seven listings due to a client’s Facebook posting: seven referrals came directly from one online word-of-mouth moment.
It’s not just housing, either. Somebody bought 27 million iPhones this year. U.S. car dealers sold 19% more cars than last year. Three new restaurants opened in my town; One pizza shop closed – it smartly relocated, actually, closer to a nearby college. And yes, yours truly took his microphone and camera across 151,000 miles to eight different countries and delivered 67 keynotes.
So, yes, there’s plenty of recovery in the global economy.
How did these companies do it? I suspect largely how I did it: I paid more attention to my business plan than I did to the news and naysayers. In fact, I cut a lot of naysayers out of my view, pruning everything from my web bookmarks to my social media connections. I also leveraged the recession as a springboard: Downward pressure on some sectors in the economy like travel, electronics and advertising enabled me to make investments that were previously out of reach.
By staying focused on my goals, I could pluck the silver linings out of the recession, and weave them into a cape with which to leap tall buildings.
I focused on opportunities. I put aside challenges I didn’t have the time, money or expertise to solve. Instead I put effort into things I could do right away: Call a client, write a blog, visit with a mentor. As I kept doing what I could do, rather than worry about what I couldn’t do, I dug up more sales, more projects, more opportunities to contribute.
And more growth.
It’s one of my favorite lessons for all of us: Make your own growth. Start by creating a list of everything you can’t do right now, and set it all aside. Now look at all the time, mental energy and excitement you’ll have released to seek and pursue new opportunities! Going forward, if something gets in your way – a competitor, a government policy, a recession – just find a way to go around it. Some people think that’s impossible, but 5 million housing sales, 21 million iPhones and 67 seminars say otherwise.
Because most of the roadblocks are in your head.
Every salesman without an appointment today didn’t make three contacts yesterday. That’s not the recession’s fault. Every house for-sale-by-owner proves that un-captured prospects remain in the market, even during the recession. Every attendee to a conference, training class or networking event reminds us that simplest part of building success is simply showing up.
Make creating your own success easy.
Consider turning off the news until the end of the year.Take a week in which you don’t listen, watch, read, discuss, tweet or text a single thing about the economy. During that week, monitor how much extra time and energy you have for other purposes. Reflect upon your state of mind. Use your newly released time and energy to do something creative: Sing, write a poem, sleep, go to lunch with a mentor, call a client, or take a walk.
By that time, it will be 2013.
And you’ll be in the right mental place, with all the time you need, to write your own success story all year long!