As of November 1, 2022 I am no longer a real estate broker. My real estate sites temporarily lead here. At least temporarily, those sites will be for sale: WhidbeyRealtor.com WhidbeyRealtor.net MyWhidbeyRealtor.com MyWhidbeyRealtor.net . This post describes why and how I made the change.
Well this is certainly going to open up my availability. I decided to relinquish my real estate license. Not an easy decision, but my body has been giving me increasingly stronger hints that I need to take better care of my health. The good news is that I get to rest and recuperate while continuing to work on my creative side with writing and photography.
A thought that came to mind on a walk:
Life is too short to work at a job that makes life shorter.
A movie quote that came to mind shortly after that; (from You’ve Got Mail – https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0128853/quotes/qt0549899)
Birdie Conrad: You are daring to imagine that you could have a different life. Oh, I know it doesn’t feel like that. You feel like a big fat failure now. But you’re not. You are marching into the unknown armed with…
Birdie Conrad: Nothing. Have a sandwich.
I want to thank the people who supported my effort. That took a lot of patience. I suspect some of you bit your tongue as you watched me struggle with the world of sales. Your forbearance is appreciated.
An obvious irony: A person who is a fan of frugality might not be the best fit for selling vacation houses.
Ah, but the future. The previous post reflected some of what was on my mind, recently. (Almost A Week Off) I listed enough writing and photography prospects to keep me busy. Here’s a summary.
- Helping the work I’ve done fund the life I want to lead. – As of October 2022 I have 17 books and at least a dozen photo essays to devote time and energy to selling.
- Completing the back story book for Firewatcher and the Exodus/Genesis series. – Firewatcher is my #apocaloptimic #SciFi novel about a bunch of Luddites escaping one set of problems on Earth to find a different set of problems. I purposely wrote it to allow sequels, and to invite other writers to write some of them. As with any coherent sci-fi universe, there are rules to follow. So, I guess I should finish writing them.
- Write the first sequel to Firewatcher. – I have a starting point and scenes in mind. I wonder what happens.
- Photography – Finish my ten year photo essay of Whidbey Island by finishing Twelve Months at Fort Ebey, and then produce an exhibit of all ten years’ work.
- Screenplay – Several friends who’ve written screenplays have actively encouraged me to turn one of my ancestor’s notes into a screenplay. It is a good story. Step one, learn how to write a screenplay. Step two, do the rest.
Besides, I’ve heard of jobs that I am being considered for. OK. I’m willing to have those conversations.
Regardless of the rest, I am prioritizing rest, rest and relaxation, rest and recuperation.
Working too hard is too unhealthy. Working too hard and not getting paid makes that worse. I don’t know if I’ll be able to make much as an artist, but it could happen. I also buy lottery tickets.
My relaxation will include hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, dancing, bicycling – but first I must recuperate. I won’t list every aspect of me that needs to recuperate. The list is long, dull to most, and too personal in parts. But I will mention a knee that wasn’t getting exercised enough. Head and neck muscles that are taut enough to frustrate various health care providers who try to move my head. And weight that was creeping up even before the pandemic. Health builds on health. I’ve sacrificed health on the altar of a work ethic that didn’t provide the purported compensation. Compliments are nice, but they don’t pay bills.
I could not have made this decision a few years ago. Social Security enables it. Before those payments began to arrive any gap in workload meant a shortfall in income. Now, even with those payments I can only start to reclaim me. I can take myself off that sacrificial altar.
The prospect of not working that hard launches anxieties. The prospect of prioritizing myself, my self, should be the norm, not something foreign and potentially frightening. That’s the world I live in, though. That realization alone is an unsettling realization.
But, I’m taking that step. The folks who encouraged me, taught me, supported me to become a real estate broker are appreciated. I could not have done it without them. Without that job I would’ve had to sell my house, be barely solvent, and not know where or how I was going to live. They provided a great gift, especially because none of my attempts at getting a job were successful. At least being ‘over qualified’ is not an issue in real estate. But, now it is time to take a step away from being a real estate broker and step more fully into things that can compensate me at a much lower cost.
I’m taking steps but I am also keeping in mind that plans are known for changing. The world is weird, so none of us know what else may change. Stay tuned.
PS And I look forward to not having to continually add the Required Disclosure:
Disclosure: I’m a broker at Dalton Realty, Inc. http://whidbeyrealtor.com/. (or the versions for Coldwell Banker, too.)
Looking forward to removing that distraction from our conversations.
Sounds wonderful Tom.