Kyle KillebrewDing. Buzz. Ring. Quack…Yep, even the sound of an animal can be a ringtone these days. But, this post isn’t about the ridiculous sounds of the 21st century communication devices. It’s about what they represent, DISTRACTIONS.  Those things that prevent us from giving our full attention to what we’re doing.

Every day, I’m bombarded with texts, emails, calls, updates, people knocking on my door asking me to do this, sign that, call them, or go there. All the while, I’m trying to focus on completing a specific task. Honestly, it’s hard getting anything done that takes full concentration and I used to blame it on all these daily (or minutely…if that’s a word) distractions. But then I realized, distractions weren’t the problem. I was.

Being constantly diverted to different tasks is the nature of the real estate business.  As REALTORS® we need to be “on the move,” “on our toes” multi-taskers who can see and accomplish the big picture, while also making sure the small details are “top of mind.”  Each of us drives, oils and maintains our own real estate machine…and distractions can lead our “eyes off the road.”

So what’s the point? The true obstacle to completing tasks and “staying the course” is the lack of self-discipline. Without self-discipline, we’ll only do the things we want to do and not the things we need to. We’ll tend to complete things that are easy or urgent and any long-term project is put on hold. Then, when we do have the time, considering any task that requires focus seems exhausting.

So, what to do? As Nike would say, “Just do it.” Don’t make excuses.  Think about the long-term. And psych yourself up!

Kyle Killebrew, a broker with The Real Estate Group, Springfield, is 2011 Chair of the Illinois Young Professionals Network (YPN).