DGS 250: Importance of Relaxation as a Property Manager

As a property management entrepreneur, you know how stressful day-to-day work and life can get. Over the years, we’ve noticed that property managers often neglect their own health until they burn out…

In today’s episode, property management growth experts Jason and Sarah Hull chat about the importance of taking breaks and relaxing periodically as a property management business owner.

You’ll Learn

[01:36] You’re stressed out! Now what?

[07:44] If you’re burnt out, you aren’t effective

[15:32] Why you need to take a vacation ASAP

[17:37] Take a break… or else


“Just because you’re working more or working harder does not mean you’re productive or you’re effective.”

“The thing that will give you more productivity is to stop and take a break.”

“Cars have both the gas and the brake. You need to realize that in your business, there’s a time for gas and there’s a time for the brake.”

“If a vacation seems crazy to you, schedule one.”


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[00:00:00] Sarah: If a vacation seems crazy to you, schedule one. That’s exactly when you need one. When you go, “I just don’t think there’s any chance that I could be taken away from the business. Like everything is on me and there’s no possible way that I can do it.”

[00:00:15] That is exactly when you need to do it.

[00:00:18] Do it. Book it. You have to. Otherwise this is your life forever. 

[00:00:23] Jason: Welcome DoorGrow property managers to the DoorGrow Show. If you are a property management entrepreneur that wants to add doors, make a difference, increase revenue, help others, impact lives, and you are interested in growing in business and life, and you are open to doing things a bit differently, then you are a DoorGrow property manager. DoorGrow property managers love the opportunities, daily variety, unique challenges, and freedom that property management brings. Many in real estate think you’re crazy for doing it. You think they’re crazy for not because you realize that property management is the ultimate high trust gateway to real estate deals, relationships, and residual income.

[00:01:04] At DoorGrow, we are on a mission to transform property management business owners and their businesses. We want to transform the industry, eliminate the BS, build awareness, change perception, and expand the market and help the best property management entrepreneurs win. We’re your hosts, property management growth experts, Jason and Sarah Hull, the owners of DoorGrow.

[00:01:25] And now let’s get into the show. All right. So today’s topic Is what? 

[00:01:30] Sarah: Relaxation. 

[00:01:31] Jason: Relaxation.

[00:01:33] Sarah: Yay. You know that thing that you guys never do? 

[00:01:36] Jason: So, property management can be a little bit stressful. I’ve talked to thousands of property managers and this is a common theme. It can be a bit stressful.

[00:01:44] And I can’t tell you how many I’ve talked to that said they haven’t taken a vacation in like years. They’re not taking breaks. They’re not taking time for themselves, like things like this. And so I think it’s important to recognize that just because you’re working more or working harder does not mean you’re productive or you’re effective.

[00:02:05] And so it’s important to make sure that you are taking breaks. So I think I shared on an episode recently at a client that I was coaching. And we had him do a time study, which is one of our tools we use to help clients figure out stuff. And he realized it was taking him like an hour to do things after three o’clock that took him 10 minutes to do in the morning.

[00:02:26] And so that’s a clue to take. a break that we need to take breaks. Yesterday I was working on some tasks and I was getting a lot of stuff done, but then I eventually hit a wall where I was trying to work on something and it just like, was really hard. Like it was just felt really difficult for my brain to work on it at that moment.

[00:02:43] And I realized, “Oh, it’s like in the afternoon I haven’t eaten lunch yet and I probably should take a break.” And so rather than forcing it and pushing forward, which I used to do in the past and do less productive work. I went and took a break. So, all right, what else should we say about taking breaks? 

[00:03:01] Sarah: All right. So I know that it seems like the opposite thing that you should do when you’re very busy And you’ve got a lot on your plate and you’ve got 10, 000 tasks to handle and you just have to push through and keep going and get it all done. And that if you stop, it will get harder because then you’ll fall behind and then you’ll have more to do and then it’ll take longer and then you’ll be going until midnight or later.

[00:03:26] And. It’s really crazy, but it is backwards because if you are just pushing through and you’re trying to just get it done and dig your heels in and keep going, even when you’re tired, even when your body is telling you like, “Hey, I’m tired and I need a break.” Then you’re still able to keep going, but you’re just not efficient and you’re being less productive.

[00:03:50] So the thing that would give you more productivity is not to just push through and say, “I’m just going to keep going until I get it all done.” The thing that will give you more productivity is to stop and take a break. I know it sounds wild, but it’s true. So you need to figure out what can you do in that moment to then get some space, remove yourself from the situation and actually get into a state where your brain and your body can start to relax.

[00:04:19] Jason: Sometimes breaks are not enough. A quick break’s just not enough. You’re right. So especially if you’ve been in burnout for a while. 

[00:04:25] Yeah. 

[00:04:26] Sarah: We’ve been working really hard. I talked about this on the scale call last week. There are seasons in your business where you will be because maybe you are bringing on a whole bunch of new units. Maybe you’re hiring a new person. Maybe you’re implementing a new system or changing softwares or working with a new coach. And there are definitely times for that. But you also have to realize that there are times for breaks and rest and relaxation.

[00:04:52] Cars have both the gas and the brake. You need to realize that in your business, there’s a time for gas and there’s a time for the brake. So you must have both. 

[00:05:04] Jason: Yeah. So we’ve been working really hard lately and I think we’re both getting to a place of burnout. We were outfitting an an Airbnb that we’re going to use for some client events and stuff as well.

[00:05:14] And we’ve just been working on the business. We’re onboarding new sales people in the company too. And it’s just, it’s a lot, right. And so we just a week’s vacation basically. We did a cool training. If you missed it last week, it was really cool. So we did do some work but we took a break and I think it was well needed, especially after that marathon move that we did moving all that furniture into that rental.

[00:05:38] Sarah: So I was pretty burned out physically, and I was nearing burnout. I was just, my stress level was through the roof. I was telling Jason, “I am on the verge of a breakdown, could happen like any little thing” and little things, little stupid things that I would normally not care about as much were setting me off like big explosions over a little stupid things.

[00:06:03] Jason: Every married guy can resonate. We know when you women get like that. 

[00:06:07] Sarah: Well men get like that too, though, in a different way, I think sometimes when the little things that they’re an annoyance, they’re a slight frustration, but it’s not the end of the world. But when your body reacts to that little stupid frustration as if it is the end of the world, that’s a really good cue like you need a break. So we took one. And we pushed ourselves probably to the limit and just about every capacity as business owners often do, we’re like “go, hurry up, get it all done, make it happen. So we set up we set up an Airbnb in 26 hours. Everything. We cleaned it and we had no furniture.

[00:06:48] We moved everything in, we assembled it, we decorated it. We got decor, silverware, dishes. There’s five beds in there. 

[00:06:55] Jason: Five beds. 

[00:06:56] Sarah: And everything. And not just like beds… 

[00:06:58] Jason: purple mattresses and stuff ready. 

[00:07:00] Sarah: Yeah. It’s ready to be rented out right now. And we did all of that. 

[00:07:04] Jason: And it’s two story. 

[00:07:05] Sarah: In 26 hours.

[00:07:06] Jason: All the rooms, all the bedrooms are upstairs except one. It was a good time. Hudson, my son, and I were the heavy lifters. 

[00:07:12] Sarah: Yes. I wasn’t going to break a nail. These are like, it’s 75 to get a new set! I’m not… you do that. So we did all of this. And then we actually had this trip booked for a while.

[00:07:24] It was booked last year. But the timing just worked out really well. Yeah. So we got done Sunday evening. late Sunday evening. And then Monday morning we flew out to a property, very rural in Arkansas, in Bentonville, Arkansas. It’s actually Decatur, but there’s like three properties in the city of Decatur, I think.

[00:07:44] And then that week, it wasn’t that we didn’t work at all because we did, but I only worked for maybe a few hours a day and it was selective work and it was focused work. So instead of doing everything that I would normally have done, I had to then prioritize. And say, okay, “if I have two hours to do everything because I’m only going to work for two hours today or three hours today, then what are the things that I must get done today in that time?”

[00:08:15] And those were the things that I focused on and anything that wasn’t that I either didn’t do it or I delegated it to the team. Because the thing that we also don’t realize is sometimes things can wait and that’s okay. We’re in this era now of everything is instant. It’s, “I want it right now. I want this now. I want an answer now. I want to talk to somebody now. I want Amazon right now. Like, I want everything instantly.” And that has trained us to instantly respond to everything and then to be in this mindset where, “Oh, somebody needs me and then I must drop everything. I must handle it right now.” It is okay to wait.

[00:08:55] Jason: It’s okay to say no. It’s okay to say, “Hey, no, I’m not doing that today, or that’s going to be done next week.” Depending on the situation, you don’t always have to be reactive. you should be in control in your business, right? Where you’re not reacting to everything. So. 

[00:09:10] Sarah: So I’ll share what I shared on that Scale call is I challenged everybody to give themselves Megan Cuthin talks about this.

[00:09:18] And so if Megan ever sees this. Megan, we love you. So Megan is our friend. She’s out in Nashville, Tennessee. She’s great. And she coaches on operations. And one of the things that she had talked about is she was noticing that every so often she would just get exhausted and then she was no longer effective.

[00:09:35] And she was just like, she had no more gusto to her. She didn’t want to do things. And that’s because she was hitting a burnout cycle. So she was realizing her burnout cycle was happening pretty often, like every other week. And then what she needed to do when she was like that is just take a break.

[00:09:53] So what she started doing is just building these little like mini breaks in. So what she does is she just chooses a day. And she blocks that day out so that she doesn’t do anything that day. She has no calls. She has no appointments. She doesn’t wake up at a certain time. She just treats it like a vacation day when she’s at home. So she’ll wake up whenever her body feels like waking up. If she wants to just read a book or watch TV or go take a nap or meditate or take a walk or go bowling or do whatever that day she does that. And then when she feels pretty well rested. relaxed and pretty well rested.

[00:10:35] Usually what happens then when we start to feel that way is then our brain starts going “Oh, I should take care of that. And Oh, what if I did that? And Oh…” and we start to get pulled back in to the idea of work and then work seems now exciting again versus, “Oh, I have to do that, but I really just don’t want to do it.”

[00:10:55] There’s a big difference between going, “Oh, you know what? I could probably just do that. Oh, you know what? I had this great idea. We should do that.” Then you feel excited and energized about it. That’s your cue now to go back to work. And it might happen. It might take a day. It might take a few days if you’re, especially if you haven’t done this in a while, it might take a few days.

[00:11:12] It only might take a few hours. So you might be on like this burnout day for like three hours and that’s it. So that’s it. My challenge to everybody on the scale call last week was to schedule yourself a day like this, where you don’t do all of the things that you would normally do and allow yourself that time to relax.

[00:11:31] And then my other challenge was to do this regularly. Also, don’t just do it once and be like, “Oh, I’m good now.” You’re not, you have to continuously do this thing. And we had a client actually Josh, he closes his office every single week now on Friday early. And he’s His whole team goes home early.

[00:11:48] Can you imagine that? So they have about like a four and a half day work week now instead of a five day. And the whole team gets everything done. They appreciate having that extra time in that extra afternoon. And instead of going “Oh, well I like, I can’t not work on Friday afternoon because then all of this stuff won’t get done.”

[00:12:08] They get it done. So they’re getting the same amount of work done, but in a shorter amount of time because they’re properly motivated and they get extra time now to relax. So essentially they’re getting a longer weekend. So I would challenge you to do the same thing, pick a day. And if you’re like, “there is no chance I could do that right now!” That’s fine.

[00:12:27] Do three weeks from now. Pick a day and close your office early. The nice thing is you don’t actually have to do it. You just have to tell your brain that you’re going to do it. So say, “I’m going to close at one o’clock today.” And then what you’ll subconsciously do is start filtering all of the work and all of the things that must get done.

[00:12:43] In that time frame, because you’re going to close at 1 o’clock, and you’ll get them done, and then, even if you don’t close at 1 o’clock, you don’t have to, but you just tell yourself that you will, if you then don’t close at 1 o’clock, and you say, well, now I have an extra 4 hours in my day, what can you do with those extra 4 hours that your brain wasn’t actually planning on having?

[00:13:03] Jason: Yeah. 

[00:13:03] Sarah: So you can trick your brain, but you really, you have to do a little bit extra to like trick your brain. Because if you go, “Oh yeah, but I’m not actually closing at one o’clock. I’m going to be here until five anyway.” Then your brain will give you until five o’clock to get all of your crap done.

[00:13:16] But if you’re like, “I am closing at one o’clock, I am stopping at one o’clock and that’s it.” No exceptions. Then all of a sudden you work in the capacity that you have, you get all of your stuff done, and now you have some extra time in your day. And you might then decide to reinvest that time back into the business and go, “Oh, you know what? I think I’ll go take a quick lunch. Maybe I’ll go take a quick break. Maybe I’ll take an hour break. Maybe I’ll take a two hour lunch.” I don’t know. And then if you want to come back, you can always come back. It’s your business. You can do whatever you want, but you have to actually trick your brain into, hey, “I need to get everything done by one o’clock or 12 o’clock or two o’clock or whatever time, pick a time, close early and get everything done by then.”

[00:13:55] And then all of a sudden, you will be a lot more efficient that way. And you’ll prioritize the things that need to be done because a lot of the things that you’re doing, They don’t actually need to be done. 

[00:14:06] Jason: So this concept is Parkinson’s law, right? Is the idea that the more time you get for something, the more time it’s going to take.

[00:14:14] And so things will just always fill up whatever container you make available. Related to that, because work expands to fill the time that’s available for its completion, things become harder. The more time you allow. And so sometimes by collapsing the amount of time available and having deadlines or having requirements.

[00:14:36] And this is one of, I think the brilliant pieces of our planning system, DoorGrow OS, by collapsing the time allotted in order to achieve something, people actually like work more efficiently and it’s less hard to accomplish and they get more innovative And they start like looking for all these other alternatives and options and whatever and they do what’s most effective.

[00:14:58] And so we’ve seen this with team members like they might spend way too much time on something if we just say this is when we need it’s like we need this by next week and They we could give them a month And they would take an entire month and spend a ton of time and more time doing it. And that doesn’t mean it’s more effective or that we’re getting a better result necessarily.

[00:15:17] So, same thing for you. Like set a cutoff. I’m done with work at this time. I’m going to take a break at this time. I’m going to take a vacation at this time. And then you will find that things become more and more effective. So Parkinson’s law. Cool. 

[00:15:32] Sarah: If a vacation seems crazy to you, schedule one.

[00:15:36] Yeah. That’s exactly when you need one. When you go, “I just don’t think there’s any chance that I could be taken away from the business. Like I can’t take away from my team or I am the team. I don’t even have a team yet. Like everything is on me and there’s no possible way that I can do it.”

[00:15:52] That is exactly when you need to do it. So just do it. 

[00:15:55] Jason: Yeah. 

[00:15:56] Sarah: Do it. Book it. You have to. Otherwise this is your life forever. This is what you want. Do you want to be stuck? Doing all of this stuff every day, all day, burned out, exhausted, tired, miserable? No, so you have to get out of that. And sometimes to get out of that, we have to physically remove ourself from the situation because I know you guys out there, you’ll go, “Oh yeah, I’ll take a break.”

[00:16:20] And then you’ll bring your cell phone with you and you’ll be doing stuff anyway. Actually take a break and remove yourself. 

[00:16:28] Jason: So at one of our DoorGrow Live events, we have brought in an expert trainer that trains pro athletes for the San Antonio Spurs and some other pro teams that are around Texas.

[00:16:41] And she talked about how is part of their training mechanism and what she coaches on and supports them in recovery is a big part of that piece. It’s a big piece of all of that. And if you don’t have recovery, then you’re going to have more injury. You’re not going to perform as well. And so she talked about how the recovery piece is usually this most neglected piece because they’re super driven.

[00:17:05] And a lot of entrepreneurs, you’re high D in a DISC assessment. Like you’re very driven. You want to like get things done. You’re motivated, but you may not be giving yourself the recovery you need to be effective.

[00:17:16] During the recovery stage, it’s built during those early morning hours where you’re sleeping. That’s where muscle’s built. You do the work and break the muscle and tear the muscle and whatever doing the workouts, but it’s built during recovery. And so if you’re not giving yourself what you need and setting aside the recovery time, you will inevitably burn out.

[00:17:35] So you have to find that balance. So. 

[00:17:36] Sarah: And You need to take a break before your body does it for you. 

[00:17:40] Jason: Right. 

[00:17:41] Sarah: Because that’s the other thing, if you’ve ever noticed that when you’re just tired and you’re exhausted and you’re stressed and you’re like, that’s usually when all of a sudden you straighten your back or you twist your ankle or you get this weird cold or bronchitis or whatever.

[00:17:57] It’s because you’re not listening to your body. Your body is giving you clues and telling you what it needs. “Hey, I need to eat Hey, I need to sleep. Hey, like I’m not relaxed. There’s way too much cortisol in here. What are we doing?” And if we just keep pushing through it will break down And something will happen either a sickness or an illness or an injury And then you have to take a break because it will force you to take a break.

[00:18:24] But then the problem with that guys is then we’re not taking a break that’s fun. We’re taking a break because we’re sick and injured. 

[00:18:31] Jason: Yeah. So we don’t get to really enjoy it. Yeah. 

[00:18:34] Sarah: So you’re not enjoying it now. You’re going, “Oh, I feel like crap.” Of course you do. So you should choose to take a break before your body chooses it for you. 

[00:18:43] Jason: So I think, one of the things I’m noticing is it’s really important for entrepreneurs to become attuned to their nervous system. They need to be familiar with how they’re feeling and just check in with themselves. And for entrepreneurs, we usually operate at a high stress level and not all stress is bad necessarily, right?

[00:18:59] The stress of working out actually gives you more runway and gives you more time, productive time. But we need to make sure that we’re paying attention to our nervous system because we’ll get preloaded and then we’ll get like really like heightened and really anxious. And then to the point where we’re exploding at that team members and like freaking out and like we’re really heightened and we might then some entrepreneurs will get to the point where they’re having panic attacks and they’re not sleeping at night and they’re having.

[00:19:25] Heart palpitations, right? And so we need to make sure we are honoring the body and our body will give us clues, nervous system. So go take a walk, take a breather, take a vacation, take a break, but start listening to your nervous system. What’s it telling you right now that you need right now? Maybe you need to take care of your body.

[00:19:41] So, all right. Anything else? 

[00:19:43] Sarah: I think if you need to take a break, then take a break and you can take a mini break. You can do that. So just get up and walk around the office. Even if you pace around the office. We have a couple of clients who do that. Like Yair every, I think it’s four o’clock every day, he plays the Rocky theme in his office. And then he does like pushups and like burpees and like jumping jacks and lunges and stuff. Now you don’t necessarily have to do all of that, but Schedule it throughout the day, put it right on your calendar, and then every so often get up and go walk around, even if it’s just walking around your office.

[00:20:23] Rest your eyes, close your eyes for a few minutes, look away from your screen. Don’t take a break from your screen by looking at your cell phone. That’s another screen. That’s not a break. Then your eyes are strained all day long. So actually look at something that’s not a screen, rest your eyes or close your eyes or do some eye squeezes.

[00:20:40] You can meditate, you can listen to some music, you can start to read a book. And even if it’s only for a few minutes throughout the day, that few minutes is going to help rejuvenate your body. So then you’re not just feeling like you’re constantly drained. And when you need a longer break, take a longer break, even though it might seem impossible.

[00:21:02] That’s exactly when you need to do it. 

[00:21:04] Jason: Okay, cool. So there’s a cool app that I used for a while called Rise Sleep and it shows your circadian rhythm and there’s usually a big spike in the morning where you ramp up and then it dips down in the afternoon and then you get a littler spike in the in the evening and where you get a another boost.

[00:21:24] But that lull in the afternoon, that dip can be pretty severe if we’re not taking care of our health. And you can be really fatigued. And so that’s a great time to maybe go for a walk or take a break or do something to wake yourself up or go do a workout or something like that. So, all right, well, hopefully this was a helpful and effective for you to honor your nervous system.

[00:21:44] Get some breaks in. towards burnout. We know that if you’re not burning yourself out, you’re going to be a lot more productive, a lot more effective, and we can help you grow your business a lot faster. And if you’d like to learn how to get your business growing faster, how to lower your stress levels and make the business a calm workplace, and get more effective and efficient team members, get better systems in place, this is what we do at DoorGrow. We’re able to help grow companies dramatically, and we would love to help and support you. So reach out to us and talk to our team and let’s get you going. So until next time to our mutual growth, bye everyone.

[00:22:17] you just listened to the #DoorGrowShow. We are building a community of the savviest property management entrepreneurs on the planet in the DoorGrowClub. Join your fellow DoorGrow Hackers at doorgrowclub.com. Listen, everyone is doing the same stuff. SEO, PPC, pay-per-lead content, social direct mail, and they still struggle to grow! 

[00:22:44] At DoorGrow, we solve your biggest challenge: getting deals and growing your business. Find out more at doorgrow.com. Find any show notes or links from today’s episode on our blog doorgrow.com, and to get notified of future events and news subscribe to our newsletter at doorgrow.com/subscribe. Until next time, take what you learn and start DoorGrow Hacking your business and your life.

Jason Hull

Jason's mission is "to inspire others to love true principles." This means he enjoys digging up gold nuggets of wisdom & sharing them with property managers to help them improve their business. He founded OpenPotion, DoorGrow, & GatherKudos.

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