In the current climate of uncertainty, even though we can see light at the end of the tunnel, it’s easy to become despondent. When we work long hours, work by ourselves in our silos, and become isolated from friends and family, depression can set in. At the very least, you’ll find yourself with ‘the blues’. So what can you do to maintain your mental health as a sole trader?
Much like certain foods help to boost our immune system, the following will boost your immunity to mental health issues.
Eight top tips to maintain your mental health
- Use systems and processes to keep yourself organised
In our experience, poor mental health begins with anxiety. If you worry whether or not you’ve covered everything you need to for your clients, you’ll be anxious. Sometimes you won’t even understand why you’re feeling anxious. You’ll feel unsettled and if you don’t deal with the issue, you could go into a full-blown panic attack.
One way you can avoid that type of stress is to be organised. When you have systems and processes in place, you can follow procedures and know for certain that you’ve done all you need to do for your client.
- Ask for help
This might seem like a no-brainer but you’d be surprised how many buyers’ agents choose to ‘soldier on’ because they’re embarrassed about asking for help. Especially when you’re starting your business, you can’t be expected to know everything or solve every problem. So find a network of supporters who can help.
- Talk to like-minded experienced advocates
Our Mavens can call on me or other members of the Property Mavens community to share knowledge derived from decades of practical real estate experience, celebrate their wins and seek help with tricky issues they might not have encountered before. The key is to make sure you don’t isolate yourself in the belief that sharing means less for you. There’s plenty of work for everyone and the more we share, the better off we all are.
- Don’t over-stretch yourself
One way we all experience stress that can lead to deeper mental health issues is by taking on too much at once. Especially now, we need to be kinder to ourselves. So if you have other issues in your life taking up headspace – homeschooling, moving house, family illness – you might want to limit your clients to those you can manage easily.
- Remember your value
When we get stressed, we can experience ‘imposter syndrome’ and wonder why we became a buyer’s agent in the first place. If this hasn’t happened to you yet, be prepared. It happens to all of us at some time or another. When you start feeling inadequate, then take a pen and paper (not a tablet), grab your non-alcoholic beverage of choice, sit down and write a list of all the things you’re good at, and all your wins over the years. Most of us listen to the bad voice in our head that tells us about all the bad things. Ignore it, and look at your list.
- Do a good deed every day
Now, this isn’t a boy scout mantra. What I mean is that you should try to help someone every day, even if it’s just smiling at a person you pass on the way to the supermarket, or answering a call from a family member and listening to them vent. Good deeds don’t require shining armour and a horse; the smallest actions can have a huge impact on someone else’s day.
- Get enough sleep
Anxiety can lead to insomnia. If you find that your heart is racing as soon as your head hits the pillow, then you might consider taking a shower before bedtime, drinking a glass of warm milk, or practising some deep breathing exercises.
- Find something special in the everyday.
When you can, get off your seat and go for a walk. Take a good look at what’s around you – an Art Deco door, the first leaves on the wisteria. If you’re looking actively for something special, you aren’t worrying about work. It’s like a holiday for your brain that pushes the ‘reset’ button.
Want the support of a community of like-minded people?
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