phone 2By Maya Bailey

Do you have to be hard on yourself in order to succeed?

When I coach real estate agents in creating their six-figure incomes, I often hear this misconception: “I need to be hard on myself in order to succeed.”

When I ask about the origin of this belief, I often hear stories of being conditioned by well-meaning teachers and parents in a controlling and rigid way. Since we learn to treat ourselves the way we were treated, my clients are just carrying on the legacy because they don’t know how else to motivate themselves in order to succeed.

Unfortunately, their strategy actually works against them. Studies have shown that when we are hard on ourselves and beat ourselves up, we actually lower our energy. This leads to decreased motivation and eventually burnout.

So what is the answer? If you’re not going to be hard on yourself, how do you motivate yourself to succeed?

Fortunately there is a positive solution. Research indicates that if we choose a positive and encouraging way to get ourselves focused and on track, it can be a very efficient motivation technique.

So here are some tips on how to change your motivational strategy:

1. Awareness – Start becoming aware of the words you say to yourself every day in order to get up to speed. Do they have a positive or negative tone?

Do they build you up or tear you down?

2. Observe – Observe your energy when you hear these words. Does your energy increase or decrease? If you have an inner tyrant, do you also have an inner rebel?

3. Intervene – When you become aware of how often you are being hard on yourself, it’s time to intervene. The best way to break into your own thoughts is to use the “Stop Technique.”

Here’s how it goes:

* Say the word “stop” when negative voices arise in you.

* Then take a deep breath to interrupt the pattern.

* Finally, put in a positive new thought.

What kind of positive new thoughts should you install?

I recommend thoughts of positive self talk, such as:

* I now motivate myself in a loving and encouraging way.

* I inspire myself with enthusiasm and energy.

* I treat myself with kindness and respect.

Create your own phrases of self-talk. They can be as simple as saying to yourself, “Good job” or “You are on the right track.”

When you start treating yourself with more respect, you will notice your energy level increase. Use that increased energy to prioritize your day and implement what you planned.

maya webRemember, you don’t need to work harder; you just need to work smarter.

Dr. Maya Bailey integrates her 20 years of experience as a psychologist with 15 years of expertise in marketing. Her powerful transformational work creates a Success Formula for Real Estate Professionals ready to create a Multiple 6 Figure Income. To get your free report, “7 Simple Strategies to More Clients in 90 Days” and to apply for an initial complimentary consultation, go to



  1. I just attended Brian Buffini’s Mastermind Conference in San Diego and the opening speaker was Shawn Achor, the author of The Happiness Advantage. In my opinion, his speech was one of the best I’ve ever heard, both in delivery and content. His basic message is that happiness is a choice and further, that increases in happiness and optimism have the greatest impact on long term success in business. Achor has a TED talk. You might want to check out both that and his book.

    Rick Hoogendoorn
    Royal LePage Coast Capital Realty
    Victoria BC

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