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Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Set your Boundaries and here's the key phrase: that you yourself can keep first, so others will respect them. They do not work if you won't first honor them yourself. So keep them realistic for your lifestyle & work-style.

Schedule your Month, week and days in advance, prioritizing your goals, work & family priorities. Let the little daily-distractions have to fight for room in your already planned schedule of the priority stuff. Again, you first, have to honor what you schedule. Goals can be categorized into Business-Financial-Family-Spiritual-Personal Mental Health & Personal Physical Health. 

Whenever possible delegate & hire "it" done. My time is worth $300/per hour, so I'm not going to spend any $15.00/hr time on tasks when I can hire that done. Realtors seem to like "busy work" and miss out on productive work; I was guilty of that for years. But these books cured me...


  1. Dr. Henry Cloud's BOUNDARIES
  2. Darren Hardy's The Compound Effect
  3. David Allen's Getting Things Done
  4. Michael Gerber's The E-MYTH Revisited
  5. Brian Tracy's GOALS!
Aug 06, 2015 11:10 PM
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

I don't have this one figured out yet.

Aug 06, 2015 10:10 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Truly one of the hardest things to do is find balance when you are in business for yourself. I wish I had the secret to do so. I'd bottle it up and sell it and never worry about finding balance again!

Aug 06, 2015 09:48 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Hi Michael, I dont have a problem with getting sucked into work, balance may be a bit over rated.  I like to incorporate all of the parts of my life together. 

Nothing wrong with bringing the family into the business, it has worked for thousands of  years on farms, separating business from rec and family time is just a modern concept that sometimes works and often does not.


Aug 06, 2015 09:45 PM
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Good morning Michael.  A very good question.  I set aside time where I turn off the phone, internet and all communication except for the family.  It works

Aug 06, 2015 09:09 PM
The Woodland Team of Texas
The Woodland Companies - Austin, TX
Land Specialists

Counterbalance is more important than balance.

Oct 24, 2018 07:23 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Michael Thornton - well, this leads to Time Management skills.

As much as we want to help others, it is not always possible.

It's all about prioritizing - people first then business.

Aug 07, 2015 02:12 AM
Blake Randolph
Perry Hall, MD

The best thing to do would be to go to Staples (sometimes Walmart has them as well) and buy a day by day planner (the ones that go by hours, from  6 am to 8 pm) and you will need to time block each day, and stick to it. Just for example, my days look like the following:

6:30-7:30 - Gym

Then home to shower and eat breakfast by 8:15.

8:15-10:15 - Lead generation (this is when my phone will be on silent and I will not look at it until 10:16. Lead generation is THE most valuable and important part of our success)

10:15-11:15 Lead generation follow ups (for inquiries recieved from lead gen)

11:15-12:15 Client follow up - By this poin in the day, clients are up and adam and on with their days. This is a great time to send a text/make a call so you can keep them up to date on what is going on with their transactions

12:15-12:45 Lunch

12:45 - 1:45 - Paperwork. This is when I will write up contracts, return emails, sort through things I don't need in emails and make sure all documents are uploaded.

1:45-3:00 - Business Reading/Personal Growth - Constantly learning is the most crucial aspect of every business. 

3:00-3:30 -  Hand written letters, for thank yous, anniversaries, birthdays, referall business, whatever needs to be written. Atleast 5 per day.

3:30-4:30 -  Personal errands time. If there are any. If not I like to review budget plans, and know what my next moves will be for 3 to 6 months or a year down the road.

After 4:30 is my time to make appointments to show clients homes or meet for consultations. I make these on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights.... Thursday night is date night/time I make for friends and family. I also take client appointments Saturday day, but Sunday days are free. 

This is just the schedule that works for my needs and lifestyles but everyone is different. I don't have children so my schedule is a little bit more flexible but for some from 3-4 may be picking up the kids from school or at night you may have to take them to soccer practice...and thats okay. Think of yourself like a doctor/lawyer. Clients don't tell the doctor when to meet them, doc says okay I have this this and this available and the clients pick one. Same thing for you. You have to run your business, not let your business run you.

Aug 07, 2015 01:30 AM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Michael Thornton You have to draw the line and stick to it.

Aug 06, 2015 11:49 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393


Aug 06, 2015 11:26 PM
Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

I force myself into small blocks of "me" time since I have a tendency to work around the clock.  It's much easier to block off one to three hours to enjoy than try for an entire day only to catch myself checking my smart phone  

Aug 06, 2015 10:28 PM
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
Fathom Realty Washington LLC - Tacoma, WA
South Puget Sound Washington Agent/Broker!

I find passion drives one to over concentrate thus overload occurs to the detriment of both you and your business. Get a hobby or take an allotted time each day to devote just to family. It will help believe me!

Aug 06, 2015 09:34 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

It is easy as you say and am guilty of doing that in the past. Now my personal life and family come first. Business takes a 3rd place.

Dec 25, 2016 02:29 AM
Mike Rock
Complete Design - Granite Bay, CA
Granite Bay Luxury New Construction...For Less

see bobs answer . :)   i think if u really love what you do, it isnt so bad regardless

Aug 07, 2015 02:01 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

When one has found a formula, it must be worked. But, the formula has demands too. It wants to work you. Does one make hay while the sun shines or does all work and no play make Jack a dull boy? I mix it up all day long

Aug 07, 2015 07:17 AM
Stefan Winter
Real Estate in IL & NV | Owner of Real Estate Web Tech | Daily Vlogger - Las Vegas, NV
Owner - Winter Group & Real Estate Web Tech

Pick one day a week you ignore everything work except for emergencies. That one day gets me back on track for another 6 of work.

Aug 07, 2015 04:22 AM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

This goes along with the question Paul S. Henderson, Realtor, Tacoma Washington asked this morning.  Entrepreneurs are particularly susceptible to this problem because our brains never truly turn off. We are always thinking.   As, I said in the other question, being in the moment is important.  When you are working, focus on that.  When you are with family & friends, truly be with them!  

Aug 06, 2015 11:37 PM