If you are a real estate investor for any length of time, rest assured that you will make mistakes. It’s not the mistakes themselves, but how you handle the mistakes that will ultimately have a profound effect on your business. If you dwell on these mistakes they will leave you frozen with fear, and you will never be able to move forward. If you want to be successful over the long term, you simply must get over the fear of messing up.
The Learning Process
Successful real estate investors know that mistakes are just part of the learning process. They learn from each mistake and move on. In fact, most successful investors will tell you stories about the mistakes they have made as quickly as they will brag about their successes.
My local REIA group used to have one meeting every year where folks got up on stage and tried to win an award for the “Best Deal” and the “Worst Deal” of year. The membership voted for the “contestants” with a show of applause. Sometimes it was hard to actually pick the best deal. There were always some killer deals presented.
But, when it came to the worst deal, we really had fun with these stories. Seasoned investors got up in front of the membership and told their story and why their deal should win the “Worst Deal” award for that year. It was always hilarious to hear these guys try to out-do the person before them. This meeting was one of the most anticipated and best attended meetings of the entire year. It was a time when these “mistakes” were showcased as learning experiences for all of the members. That willingness to share both the mistakes and the successes are what I love most about these types of groups.
Moving on After Mistakes
The first thing you need to do is admit that you made a mistake and try to find a solution. What can you do to fix this? Isn’t that what we really do after all; solve problems?
The next thing is to quit beating yourself up over this mistake, the ones in the past and all of the ones that are to come. Making mistakes is just part of the learning process. Forgive yourself and get back in the game.
Ask yourself is there a procedure or a system to prevent this particular mistake from happening again. If it was some sort of omission, maybe it should be incorporated into a checklist of some sort. Always be looking at your systems and implement improvements whenever a mistake occurs.
One thing is for sure; these mistakes can be like anchors that weigh you down and prevent your business from moving forward, or they can simply be learning experiences that make you a better investor. It’s your choice.