Twixmas is the perfect time to claim email amnesty

Happy Twixmas, kids! First of all, let’s unpack this precious time between Christmas and New Year’s when real estate pros are left wondering, what the heck do I do with myself and all of this unclaimed time?!

Yes, you can (and definitely should) follow the lead of your friends who are on salary by kicking back a little, relaxing, regrouping and spending a little extra time with your littles and loved ones, but you also have to admit, those of us who live from commission check to commission check get a little antsy when we don’t have doors to open and contracts to write.

A lot of economists and industry forecasters are predicting a quick and early start to the spring selling season, and depending on your market, you might be starting to feel an underlying buzz starting to bubble up below the surface — an anticipatory vibe that will grow louder and louder as January approaches and all those folks who said, “I’m going to wait until next year” start to want to make moves.

If so (and even if you haven’t been doing this long enough to feel a market shift coming long before it does) I’d encourage you to do a few things now to prepare for what will likely be a hectic and fast-moving Q1.

1. Declare email amnesty. 

Yes, you heard that right. Starting the year with an empty inbox is one of the best things that you can do for yourself and your sanity. Just like you should be wrapping up your business and closing out your books before the last day of the year, you also need to wipe the slate clean so that you can jump in and move forward with fresh goals, new clients and an uncluttered mindset.

If you are a gmail person, this is as simple as selecting your ENTIRE inbox and hitting ARCHIVE. You’ll be amazed at how simple this one act is and you’ll see, those unread/waiting for response emails will come back around if they need to. If someone needs something from you, they will chase you up, and everything else can go. (Please note, I prefer to archive rather than delete, which gets everything out of my way, but is still findable and recoverable should a records or compliance situation arise.)

2. Close out your browers and restart your laptop 

You’ve likely reset and restarted your machine many times throughout the year, but if you’re like me you might also use your open brower tabs as a to-do list of sorts. In order to really reset, you need to X out of those lovely little lifesavers and placeholders that are staring at you every second that you are on your computer, and restart without re-opening those tabs.

Don’t worry, the same as with your email, the important stuff will resurface, and you’ll be able to tackle tasks and internet errands without the surrounding interruptions (I’m looking at you, Facebook and Amazon!)

3. Clean off your desktop (both digital and IRL) 

Are you a person that constantly screenshots, saves both images and documents to your desktop, and also has a tough time throwing away everything from old paid invoices to holiday cards? Twixmas is your time. Select all and delete. Take that recycle bin sitting next to your desk and rapid sort everything on your working surface into either recycling or a drawer where you keep things forever. Everything else can (and should) go in the trash in order to create space for the things that 2024 will bring — hopefully filled with prosperity and joy.

4. Schedule out your repeat events (and your days off) through 2024 

Whether you use a paper planner, a google calendar or some combo of both, the New Year is full of empty white squares of possibility – at least so far! Take some time to reserve those things that add in a positive way to your life. That might be your brokerage’s weekly meetings and classes, your time with an accountabilibuddy (if you don’t have one of these you need to find one ASAP!), your pilates schedule, your book club and all of the other meetings and appointments that keep you in great mental and physical health, as well as your planned days off!

Once you’ve completed the above steps, take a minute to realize how good it all feels – you’re organized, you’re ready and your business is prepared to thrive. Happy New Year!

Stacie Staub is the Co-Founder and CEO of West + Main Homes.