A two person real estate team that I coach was having an off day mindset wise.  That is to say they weren’t happy with their year to date results and they weren’t happy with how the year looked like it would end up for them.

Now, to be clear, these guys have great skills.  They do, however, lack discipline, accountability and time management.

Anyway, I came to find out that the off day was more like an off quarter.  They have both been cutting back expenses personally and professionally (normal in this economy), all the while professing how broke they are and that it’s getting harder and harder to find buyers and sellers.

To go a bit further, when checking on their numbers, in October they worked less than half the days they said they would and made less than half the contacts they said they would.  Consequently, they took half the listings they said they would, and had no buyer sales and nothing go under contract.

Now, if you know me, I’m not a steadfast numbers guy when it comes to coaching salespeople.  I think the numbers are useful, however I find that people focus too much on the wrong numbers and also get a negative mindset when they don’t seem to measure up to their goals on a daily and weekly basis.  It’s like going on a diet and measuring yourself every hour of every day.  You’d drive yourself nuts, or you wouldn’t stay on the diet out of pure frustration.

All that being said, there is some significance to the numbers regarding that they worked half as much as they set out to and did half as much business as they wanted to.

In a nutshell, here’s why it happened.  Not the obvious part of working less equaling less results, I just pointed that part out.  What I’m talking about is the root cause of why they were working less.

For about 3-6 months these guys were thinking and saying that they’re going broke, are broke, need to avoid being broke, need to save money, cut expenses, etc.  All the while they’ve been thinking and saying how hard the market is, how there are no good seller’s who can sell, they can’t find buyers to pull the trigger, etc.

Now, if you believe in the Law of Attraction and the movie The Secret, then you already have your answer.  However, if you’re more of a prove it to me science person, then let me explain it further.

First, there’s the Reticular Activating System in your brain.  That’s the part of your brain that deals with arousal and focus (not limited to sexual arousal).  You notice the workings of the RAS when you look to buy a new car and suddenly notice all of those types of cars on the road that you never really noticed before.

The RAS has been geared up by your mind to find what you say is most important to it, by your words, thoughts and visualizations.  If you’re interested in a BMW, you’re going to find all sorts of BMW’s all over the place (on the road, in ads, etc) because your RAS is now geared up to focus on them.

Likewise, if you think and say things are bad, times are tough, etc., you’re gearing your RAS up to find more evidence of that.

The problem is that your mind is so powerful that it will do whatever it takes to find the stuff you “want” it to find.  So, when your thoughts are crappy about life and business, you find yourself less likely to show up to work (in their case half the time they said they would), less likely to be on time the days you do work, less likely to generate leads (again, they talked to less than half the people they said they would), or less likely to generate leads with any consistency or intensity, less likely to follow up those leads (What’s the point?  They won’t do anything anyway), less likely to feel like doing anything productive, etc., etc.

Your motivation is gone.  And instead of looking for motivated people to buy or sell your product or service, you’re now subconsciously looking for unmotivated people so that you can “gather evidence” of how crappy things are.

Then you start noticing thoughts and feelings of “what’s the use?”

Consequently, you’ll be more likely to take days off physically and mentally, more likely to cancel appointments because you don’t recognize their motivation (“nobody’s motivated right now”), more likely to find out you lost business to other salespeople, more likely to start gossiping with other salespeople in your office around the coffee maker – subconsciously trying to get them to commiserate with you on how bad things are, etc., etc.

So, to answer the question in the title, it’s pretty obvious that YES, your words and thoughts affect your deeds and results.

Monitor your thoughts and monitor your words.

Scott Friedman

scott@yourethedifference.com