In my recent blog about sustainability I talked about discipline being one of the cornerstones to consistently building and maintaining your business. Discipline is hard work. It takes having a plan and working it even when you don’t want to. It takes self-control and the ability to see the light at the end of the tunnel even when you’re surrounded by darkness. But what if you can’t? What if the sheer quantity of what you need to do overwhelms you?


That’s when laziness rears its ugly head. Laziness is often defined at the quality of being unwilling to work or use energy. But that’s not how it applies as a sabotage mechanism in the mortgage industry. Laziness in this context actually results because people have too much to do. They know what they should be doing but aren’t doing it. They feel like they can’t get anywhere. They don’t know where to start so they don’t. And the longer they wait to start, the harder it is.

They sabotage their business by distracting themselves with Facebook, LinkedIn, other social media, television, or unimportant tasks. They begin to make excuses. They have an “I’ll start again, tomorrow” attitude only tomorrow never comes. Oh sure, they’ll take care of the things that absolutely have to happen – the loan closings, the doc preparation, taking applications from referrals that drop in their lap. But doing the tasks that need to be done, the ones with long-term rewards, the ones that will sustain their business, get shut out by their distraction of choice.


If you feel like laziness may be one of your preferred methods of sabotage I would encourage you to ask yourself these questions: what are you trying to avoid, and what do you think you’re going to gain by avoiding it and distracting yourself? Then step back and look at all the time you spent watching television, surfing the web, texting, etc. and make a list of all the things you’ve created from those activities. My guess is you won’t be able to put anything on that list. There is no sustainable joy or progress that comes from those activities and there certainly isn’t any sustainable business or financial success that comes from them.

I’m not saying that you have to be working on your business 24/7. We all need to time to relax and regenerate. But I am suggesting that you need to build those activities into your plan after you have done your daily disciplines. The goal is to remove conflict and not beat yourself up for relaxing. Yes, you’ll say, but the reason I’m not currently doing my daily disciplines is because I’m overwhelmed by them.

Often the feeling of being overwhelmed stems from a plan that is too broad in scope. Perhaps your plan says that you’re going to contact 15 people in your database every week. That can seem like a lot if you’ve got closings and applications to process. But what if instead your plan said I’ll contact 3 people each day from my database. Three doesn’t sound like much. Three is maybe a twenty minute activity. Three is doable. So stop looking at the enormity of what needs to be done and instead break each goal or project down into small pieces. Start tackling each of those small pieces and make sure to celebrate your success when you’ve accomplished them. Before you know it, the big project will be complete too and laziness will no longer be an issue.