By Brent Metzger

For many of us, a home is our most valuable asset. This can make buying or selling a home feel like an overwhelming prospect. As a result, we may procrastinate, which can in turn result in regrettable missed real estate opportunities.

Buying or selling a home is a process, not a single task. You can kick procrastination to the curb and take action by breaking things down into small steps and tackling first things first.

To illustrate, I’ll paraphrase a story by the late Dr. Stephen Covey, businessman, speaker and author of bestselling books including "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People," "First Things First" and "Principle-Centered Leadership":

One day, while speaking to a group of business students, a business leader pulled out a one-gallon, wide-mouthed mason jar and set it on the table in front of the class. He then produced numerous fist-sized rocks and carefully placed them into the jar.

When no more rocks would fit inside, he asked, "Is this jar full?" Everyone in the class said, "Yes." The businessman smiled and replied, "Really?"

Next he reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of aquarium gravel. He then dumped some gravel in and shook the jar causing pieces of gravel to work themselves down into the spaces between the big rocks.

He asked the group once more, "Is the jar full?" By this time the class was catching on. "Probably not," one of them answered. "Good!" he replied.

He then produced a bucket of fine sand and began sifting it into all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once more he asked the question, "Is this jar full?"

"No!" the class shouted. Once again he said, "Good!" Then he pulled out a pitcher of water and began to slowly pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim.

Then he looked up at the class and asked, "What is the point of this illustration?"

One eager student raised his hand and said, "The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard, you can always fit some more things into it!"

"No," the speaker replied, "that’s not the point. The truth this illustration teaches us is: If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all."

Buying or selling a home, our most valuable asset, can feel like an overwhelming prospect. But buying or selling your most valuable asset is just a big rock. You can get it done if you prioritize first things first.

If you look at home buying or selling as a process rather than a singular event, you can break free from procrastination and avoid the heartbreak of regrettable missed real estate opportunities by putting this “big rock” in first.

This parable is simply another way of illustrating the famous saying based on a Chinese proverb: "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

If you’re contemplating buying or selling a home, why not take the first step today? Contact a qualified Realtor® who will help you with all the other steps in the process.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.