The Civil War Inside Us

The Civil War has been used as a metaphor to describe the internal conflicts each of us wrestles with. Being pulled by conflicting desires and thoughts is nothing new for the human condition. Today many reverse mortgage originators battle to balance frustration and pessimism working in today’s challenging market with their deeply-held desire to continue to serve older homeowners. If you find yourself pulled between these two competing emotions read on.

Turn fear into an advantage

Nearly twenty years ago I found myself confronting one of my worst fears; being unable to provide for my family. I had taken the leap of faith in leaving a comfortable and safe salaried job to go into commissioned sales. Even worse, I had chosen one of the most challenging fields rife with rejection and uncertainty- the financial services industry. As our savings dwindled and my financial D-Day fast approached I made the conscious decision to embrace my fears. What did I do? I embarked on reading several books to improve my sales skills, set benchmarks for my daily sales activities, and met with other successful agents to get their honest feedback and advice. The result? My career took off six weeks later. Use fear to your advantage to push you to improve your skill set, broaden your network of influence

Know your limitations

Knowing where we are lacking is the key to self-improvement. Are you well-versed in the various ways you can structure a reverse mortgage and when it is best used? How comfortable are you in meeting with financial professionals and explaining how the HECM works and its potential application in retirement income planning? Are you struggling to be a confident and skilled public speaker?

Our shortcomings provide us the opportunity to expand our professional value and personal confidence or to team up. Find the resources necessary to overcome these limitations and diligently work to address each of them. Some limitations can be outsourced. If you work with a sales team learn to leverage each member’s unique skills to compensate where others may not excel. Years ago when I was doing seminar presentations I would divide our appointments based on the personality type of the homeowner. My colleague excelled with some types of borrowers that I wasn’t quite as effective with.

Surround yourself with believers

What you read, watch and listen to will affect you and more importantly your outlook. Add to that list, those you talk shop with. Focus on seeking out reasoned, realistic, yet sanguine perspectives. Think of your mental input as a diet; the more balanced it is the better the result.

The civil war in our mind has no end, but each of us can be better equipped to win more battles. What strategies will you put into practice?


Tim chambers January 15, 2019 at 8:53 am

Now that the tax liens are not noted on the credit report would NMLS still find them for people applying for their mlo license?

Tom O’Donoghue January 15, 2019 at 12:34 pm

Great stuff Shannon!

Jeff Gray January 18, 2019 at 7:59 am

Absolutely the best (and most timely) strategy possible Shannon. Peace in the midst chaos.
You nailed it.


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