Wearing the Realtor Hat

It’s 11:29 pm and I am just starting my blog post, after a very full day. Sixty minutes ago, as I sat in my office, finishing up real estate related work, I didn’t know what I was going to write about. I had been away from home, and any possible creative projects, since 8:15 am. 

And yet, I have learned in my journey to stay open, receptive, unattached. I asked, What shall I write about? 

As I sent docs for electronic signatures and started on a comparative market analysis for another client, I glanced at Absolem the caterpillar, perched nearby. He asked me the important question, Who are you?

Wearing the Realtor Hat

I think about that question while I finish my work. 

Today I wore several hats. I was Yaya and Mom, spending a short time with one of my children and two of my grandchildren late this afternoon. I was Sister and Daughter and Cousin, having dinner with family tonight and enjoying the additional company of my out of town cousin Greg, and his wife Shellie. I was Friend and Writer and Artist. 

Primarily, I wore the Realtor hat today. Suddenly an idea popped into my head, making me laugh. I actually own a realtor hat, with a KW, for Keller Williams, embroidered on it. It was time for a little late night impromptu photo shoot and a very brief recap…love the pun…of a day in the life of a realtor. 

Wearing the Realtor Hat
Although it was a long one, this was one of those magical days in real estate that I love. I had a double sided closing, meaning I represented the buyers and the seller in a transaction. Sure, I got paid today.

However, I had the opportunity to be compassion, grasping an older client’s hand tightly and telling him that the home he held dear and had shared with his wife, will be well loved and cared for by its new owners. 

I had the joy of handing the key to the buyers who journeyed far in search of their new home, allowing me to help them find it. Can we be friends? the wife asks me as the closing is completed, not wanting the time we’ve spent together to be over. Yes, I answer sincerely, I would love that. 

Wearing the Realtor Hat

In between closings and emailing documents and comparative market analyses, I spent the day doing what realtors do…

…taking down signs and a lockbox, talking to other realtors, saying hello to a new agent, who…ha ha…turned out to be in my own Keller Williams office, getting feedback, scanning in documents, scanning in more documents, meeting with the realtor on the other side of an in process transaction to discuss an inspection, dropping off reports with clients, looking up info, texting clients, calling clients, responding to messages, offering reassurance, guidance, congratulations, empathy…

Wearing the Realtor Hat
It sounds like a lot of busy work…and it was. And it was so much more. I was walking my clients home today. From the first few hesitant steps of inquiry to ushering them across the threshold into a new home, it was all part of the journey.  

In keeping with my desire for this year, I was making life a little more tender, in many small and not so small ways. It all matters. It is all important to someone. It’s all part of life. And I got to walk alongside, while experiencing others coming alongside me. 

Who are you? asked Absolem. Today, living and offering fully out of who I am, I could answer…I am a Realtor. 

Wearing the Realtor Hat

Surrender 71: Laws and Codes and Comfort Animals…What?

The State of Missouri requires realtors to take 12 hours of continuing education every two years. I accept that. As one who seeks to continually grow and learn, I appreciate that I’m in an industry that sets high standards for the same. 


I completed my 12 hours today. And here’s the thing about continuing ed…we have to be present for every moment of those hours to receive credit. What makes the difference between long, boring days and interesting, fun days is the instructor. I’m going to get the credit, whether I’m fighting to stay awake or laughing and engaged. I much prefer doing the latter! 

I’m grateful that Keller Williams Realty in Joplin prefers that we enjoy the process of gaining knowledge while meeting our requirements. The office provided free continuing ed for all KW agents. And four of our affiliates…First American Title, Gateway Mortgage, Nook-N-Kranny and Flatbranch Mortgage…supplied amazing breakfasts and lunches for both days. AND, Keller brought in an amazing instructor. 

Paul Dizmang, of Dizmang Properties and School of Real Estate, Springfield, MO, spent two days covering such topics as Federal Fair Housing, The Code of Ethics, and Agency Laws. Those are important subjects for realtors to understand. And they can be very dry and dull as well. What I appreciated about Paul was how presented the material. 


Paul combines his vast knowledge of real estate with humor and stories to create a lively, engaging teaching style. His classes are interactive. The 100 agents present worked in groups to fill out quizzes, figure out the answers to actual case studies and do a fill in the blank sheet using a word list. Paul encouraged us to shout out the answers as we checked our work and to ask questions if we needed clarity. The result of this fun instructor’s efforts was that we learned. And the time flew by. 


A hot topic the last two days was comfort animals. I am familiar with service animals. But comfort animals, used to improve the physical, social, emotional and cognitive condition of patients, are a new concept to me. Most comfort animals are dogs and cats, however they can be other animals as well. 

This is important information because it affects landlords and housing. Comfort animals are allowed to be with their owners, regardless of whether pets are allowed in the properties, or not. This is huge, with many implications. I’m grateful Paul made us aware of these changes that are taking place in the industry. I have new information to share with my investor and property management clients. 


I’m glad to have my continuing education completed so early in the year. I am deeply grateful that I work for a company that brings us such high quality instruction. And I am thankful that I spent 12 hours during the last two days with Paul Dizmang, learning, laughing, and growing. 

Near the end of the afternoon, he shared that his intention as a teacher was that we leave the classes differently than we arrived, changed in big or small ways by what we had learned. His intention was realized. 

Such a noble desire is the sign of an excellent teacher. And that’s Paul. 


Journey 63: Keller Williams dotloop Class

dot loop class logo

While many in Joplin huddled indoors today, out of the cold north wind and the freezing rain and snow, 100+ agents and the staff of Keller Williams Realty gathered together at the OGAR Board Office. It wasn’t just a tactic for keeping warm! We chipped ice off our cars and braved slick roads to stretch our thinking, to learn new things, to take our business practices up a notch and to embrace time saving technology.

The Joplin Keller Williams office decided late last year to go paperless. Anyone who has practiced real estate knows what a huge commitment that is. A standard contract is seven pages long. Add in addendums, supporting documents, disclosures and closing documents and we are talking about a substantial amount of paper for each transaction. Then, the need for duplication triples or quadruples those numbers.

dot loop class with Carolyn

Picture by Carolyn Thompson

One of the things I love most about the Keller Williams franchise is that they are always cutting edge, always at the forefront of the newest technological advances. A year and a half ago, as part of our package at KW, each agent was given a powerful online tool to use called dotloop. Any form and document can be downloaded into this program or blank forms accessed online within dotloop and filled out there. A loop is created, for example 1122 Gracious Living Street, Joplin, and everything about that property, from listing docs to offers and contracts to closing documents goes into that loop. Once a loop is started, it can be shared with the key people in the transactions: buyers, sellers, agents, brokers, and anyone else associated with those people. With a few clicks, documents can be sent electronically to all parties and signatures are gathered online and looped back to the agent. Dotloop not only saves paper and trees, it is saving immense amounts of time.

I’ve been using dotloop for quite a while, and when the announcement was made that the office was going paperless, I began to run all my documents, buyers and sellers through the program. I appreciated how easy it was to use, and greatly enjoyed the time I got back that I used to spend in the car, driving to meet clients to get their signatures. When today’s class was announced, and it was stressed that EVERY agent needed to attend, rain or shine, snow or sleet, I agreed to attend. However, I thought I was pretty up to date with dotloop and knew my way around the program fairly well.

dot loop class Carolyn Thompson 2

KW Tech Trainer Carolyn Thompson

I am so very glad I was there today! KW agent and tech trainer, Carolyn Thompson, from the neighboring state of Oklahoma, drove in last night ahead of the winter weather, intent on making realtors’ lives easier with dotloop. She was phenomenal, easy to listen to and understand, and very knowledgeable about using dotloop. I didn’t just learn a couple of new things….I learned a LOT of new things. I’ve been using dotloop, but I’ve been doing some of it the more difficult way. Carolyn had great hand outs so we could follow along as she created a loop and walked us through the many benefits of being paperless. I took notes and can’t wait to put into practice all that I learned today. The Joplin KW office staff, amazing souls that they are, even made each agent a laminated flip chart to use for ease of remembering and continued learning.

Dotloop’s tagline is “peoplework, not paperwork”. Keller Williams is all about people as well. This rapidly growing international company is always focused on its agents, seeing us as people first, with lives and families, and then agents. They continually search for and implement programs, tools and models that help us to be the very best people that we can be. They know the rest will follow. In fact, one of my favorite sayings from the KW Bold program is “My business grows to the extent that I do.” Best of all, they have given me the opportunity to prove that truth. Now, I can also feel great about saving trees, being resourceful, and reclaiming precious time, both for me and my clients.  And that’s a definite win-win!

dot loop class keep calm


Journey 30: Walking My Clients Home

walking each other home beach

I love the quote by Ram Dass that says, “We’re all just walking each other home.” For me that perfectly captures the idea of journeying together through life, sharing in the travels, keeping each other company as we all head toward Home. Capital H. Sometimes I get to walk with someone for a long time. Some, I’ve been walking Home for a lifetime. Sometimes it is a short journey, a brief encounter that nonetheless makes an impact on me and on the traveling companion, and I always hope to encounter that sojourner again further down the road.

And sometimes, because of my current profession, I get to literally walk people home, a new home they have found after we’ve searched together for a while. It might be a first home, a larger home, a smaller home, a country home. Just as often, the walk I take with someone is away from a home as my client finds himself or herself at a crossroads, or experiencing a life changing event. Those journeys as just as crucial and oft times, those are the walks where I hold a hand or offer a shoulder to cry on.

Today, I got to walk alongside several clients, as they completed their walks toward new homes, or began a new journey, leaving a cherished home behind, or in the case of one couple, I accompanied them as they walked away from the home where they raised their family….and then toward the next home that is part of a new adventure. I spent a good portion of my day at title companies, and while there, I had the privilege of watching life unfold in amazing and varied ways. The closing is the time of greatest joy for me as a realtor. I know people think it must be because that’s when I receive a paycheck. The money is nice, and a necessity, but the joy comes from being present while a client gets a brand new key, and another leaves with a check that funds the way to the next part of their journey. There can be a little bit of anxiety or stress present at the closing table, and today was no exception. However, for the most part, people are happy, excited, relieved. I am the quiet observer of their genuine emotions and the smoother of paths if an unexpected bump arises.

I was very mindful today that there is a host of people who walk with me on this journey, with my clients’ best interests in mind. To the lenders who diligently push through mountains of paperwork to provide the funds at closing, to my allies at Keller Williams who oversee the closing process, (especially Melissa, Valerie and Whitney), to the cheerful and self-less closers, receptionists and behind the scenes staff at the title companies…today First American Title and Abbey Title…and to the other hard working realtors (Joni and Stephanie) on the other side of the transactions, I offer my deepest gratitude for all you do to make my job easier. I so appreciate that when there are challenges, you all keep going, so my clients and I can keep going. When there are delays, you smile and put us at ease, so that my clients and I know it will all be okay. You cheer us on, by playing your roles so well.

And to my clients today, I thank you for allowing me the honor of walking this far with you, for sharing your lives with me, and your fears, your dreams, your hopes for the future. I loved watching the laughing young couple with their 5 month old daughter buy their first family home. Their excitement was contagious. I hurt with the couple selling their dream home as their lives chart a course they never dreamed of two years ago. And yet, there is a fresh start now, for both of them. And the ability to fund new dreams, new lives. And I sat quietly with the couple who allowed their home to become new for a family just starting out, packing up 20 years of belongings and memories, laughter and tears. Immediately after that chapter closed, we walked to the door of the house that perfectly fits their needs now. We celebrated the exciting direction their lives are taking.

This was my day, after hours of preparation: smiles, hugs, handshakes, pats on the back, handing over new keys, and silent entreaties of peace, encouragement, strength and joy for all. And  waves and waves of thankfulness for those who made it all happen, stayed late, prepared docs, checked files, sent emails, held a baby who would not sleep so mommy and daddy could sign docs. It’s been a full day, completing a full week. I am spent and oh so content.


Day 294: Business After Hours at Keller Williams


The Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce, which is an amazing five star organization, holds a networking event once a month at various member locations. The purpose is two fold: it gives JACC members an opportunity to chat with others about business and life and set up appointments to meet and further each other’s businesses and it allows a company to shine in the spotlight by hosting the event.

This evening Keller Williams Realty hosted the Business After Hours, opening its doors and firing up the grill to welcome the business community. I believe Keller Williams had an after hours years ago, when the company first opened a market center in Joplin. However, this was the first Business After Hours in its current location and my first time to participate here in the Keller Williams office.


It was a beautiful evening for this get together and the KW Social Committee did a wonderful job of preparing for and hosting the fun event. I know agents Debbie, Joni, Sandy and Barbara put in many hours of work before the first guests arrived at 5:30 today. Our Team Leader, Vicki, was busy running a vacuum cleaner when I arrived late this afternoon and our Director of First Impressions, Dylan, was tidying up and wiping down counters. Members of the Social Committee were finishing up food prep in the kitchen while out back, on the patio, drinks were chilling in tubs of ice and Tim was grilling brats. Throughout our gorgeous building, agents were making sure their offices were neat and the hallways clear. I love the people and culture of KW. This feels like a family and we operate as such in the office. We uphold the culture by supporting and encouraging each other in all aspects of our businesses and our lives.


The Business After Hours was a success. The food was plentiful and delicious and the drinks cold. A jazz band performed beneath a KW canopy. And the back patio and parking lot overflowed with business people chatting in groups, exchanging biz cards and setting up appointments and lunches. I loved seeing people I haven’t seen in a while and also greeting friends and fellow agents that I see frequently. Next week I’ll enjoy several lunches and meetings that I set up tonight. And I had the pleasure of introducing some people to each other and connecting people together. I appreciate that in Joplin, and at Keller Williams, it’s not about competing so much as it is working together to make everyone successful and profitable. I am very proud to be part of such an extraordinary community and part of such an innovative and progressive company. I am blessed!

BAH KW jazz band


Day 293: First Step to BOLD with Kara Moll

BOLD logo

While I am not new to Keller Williams’ BOLD class, having participated four times before, today’s First Step to BOLD was a first for a couple of reasons. This is the first time we’ve had a female BOLD coach and each BOLD class I’ve participated in the past four years has changed and freshened the material by about 30%. Today this proved true as well, with new material included that gave me plenty to ponder and incorporate into my life.

BOLD, which is an acronym for Business Objective: a Life by Design, is a transformative program created by Keller Williams CEO of Mega Achievement Productivity Systems, Dianna Kokoszka. BOLD conditions and trains agents with mindset exercises, language techniques and lead generation techniques. The class meets once a week, for seven weeks, covering seven steps. It focuses on mastery of basic real estate principles, with a strong directive to practice lead generation daily, yet what makes this program unique is the emphasis as well on quantum physics, mindset principles and energy work. BOLD isn’t just another real estate course. It teaches us to be the very best people we can be, and allow our businesses to track along with our personal growth.

The program uses inspiring quotes known as “BOLD Laws”. Some of my favorites include “What you focus on expands”, “BE DO HAVE” and “Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.” I have appreciated the BOLD Laws so much that I made my own deck of cards with the laws printed out on them and included quotes from other sources. I randomly draw a card each morning from my deck of affirmations and place it on my bathroom mirror for the day.

I was drawn to BOLD because of the emphasis on mindset. Dianna says that business is 90% mindset, so that is where the BOLD program begins with the First Step. Today, I had the privilege of receiving instruction and encouragement from Kara Moll, a BOLD Coach from the Chicago, IL area. She had a fun, engaging style of teaching and brought fresh perspective to the BOLD material. I wrote down several principles that stood out to me:

  • “You are always prepping for the next opportunity or robbing yourself of it, based on your current activities.” Dianna Kokoszka
  • I have lived, I have loved, I have made a difference. (I embrace this truth!)
  • I am only one belief away from changing my life. Life isn’t happening to me, I’m creating it. If I don’t like it, change it. My life is a result of my beliefs.

Kara talked about defining moments in life, sharing stories from the lives of people like Zig Ziglar. I believe mine came several years ago, when I decided to face down my fears and embrace fully who I am and open my heart to living as my authentic self. There has been no turning back from that moment. There have been other crucial moments, times of growth and times of releasing the past and old pain, yet I can look back to the moment when I declared, “No more being afraid.” as the point of shift….and change.

Kara shared that she didn’t want us to leave the class today, as the same people who came in. I loved that and set my intention to make Kara’s objective a reality. I made notes, highlighted exercises to complete and explore further, and wrote questions for myself, to answer after a time of reflection. BOLD….Business Objective a Life by Design. The rest of that saying is…not by default. I am so grateful to Keller Williams, Dianna Kokoszka and the BOLD coaches, including Kara Moll, for encouraging me to live an extraordinary life!

BOLD Kara Moll

BOLD Coach Kara Moll

Day 237: Teach Ignite Rev Up Class


Keller Williams Realty offers its agents an awesome class a couple of times a year. It’s called Ignite: Skills to Spark a Great Career. Although it is geared toward getting newer agents off to a phenomenal start, it’s also a great refresher course for experienced agents too. I’ve attended the class at least twice, as a student. For my first today, I taught Power Session 1: Rev Up, with my friend and KW colleague, Lisa Fletcher.

Last week Lisa and I met at Panera and went over the materials for the three hour class. We divided up the manual, each of us taking the chapters that resonated with us.

Ignite is designed to get agents into their businesses and into production as quickly as possible. There are 18 Power Sessions taught over the course of four weeks. It’s a journey of discovery as agents gain knowledge and experience.

Session 1: Rev Up begins with mindset and limiting beliefs, and moves through such topics as setting goals, customer service, building a database and creating powerful habits. Lisa did a great job of teaching the class about successful goal setting and tracking, lead generating and setting up a schedule that enforces new habits. She has a bright and easy flowing teaching style that is enhanced by her sense of humor. Lisa also shared stories from her own amazing real estate business.

I enjoyed talking to the class about mindset and the myths that can hamper a great business. What we think determines what we believe and how we feel and act. Our beliefs influence our results. It is so critical, in business and in life, to pay attention to what’s going on in our heads. We can question and shift our thoughts, which shifts everything else.

I taught the sections on building a database and leveraging resources by building a team of business professionals who can provide valuable services to clients. We discussed the unique values we bring to our clients and began creating a Value Proposition. This is a brief statement that lets clients and potential clients know who we are and what we can do for them. We had fun discussing powerful words that were meaningful to each agent. Those words are the basis for the Value Proposition.

My favorite section to teach today was about the Big Why. The Big Why is what motivates, inspires and brings joy while on the business journey. When obstacles arise, the Big Why will help each of us stay focused and keep us moving forward. I shared my Big Why, which has changed over the years. Initially it was to pay for my children’s college tuition. The Scotland trip was a Big Why. Taking my grandson Dayan to Italy for his 18th birthday is my current motivation. I will not disappoint that young man! My huge overarching Big Why is Rivendell of the Ozarks and being able to offer others a beautiful, peaceful place to relax, reflect and refresh. The agents in the class today shared wonderful Big Whys, powerful reasons to keep going when doubts or difficulties appear.

Lisa finished up class by sharing tracking forms to use on this journey. She encouraged the agents to attend all the sessions, and learn from the wealth of information available and from the dedicated agents who so freely share from their experiences.

Lisa and I were pleased with the afternoon session. Gary Keller, cofounder and chairman of the board of Keller Williams Realty, says, “Keller Williams Realty is a training and coaching company that just happens to be in the business of real estate!” I am honored and privileged to be a part of this progressive company!

Day 176: Dessert Bites at Wilder’s Steakhouse


Tonight’s first was supposed to be titled “Dinner at Wilder’s Steakhouse with Dianna”. Dianna Kokoszka, from the Austin Keller Williams headquarters, is an entrepreneur, author, speaker and trainer, and she has built the most powerful coaching and mastermind program in the real estate industry. She was scheduled to be the guest of the Joplin Keller Williams market center this evening, and join a group of top producing agents, myself included, for dinner at Wilder’s Steakhouse. She was, that is, until severe thunderstorms in Dallas, TX grounded her flight for most of the day.

We gathered at Wilder’s Steakhouse, located at 1216 S Main, in Joplin, anyway. Wilder’s is housed in a building that was built in 1908, and since 1929 has had the motto, “Famous for Good Things to Eat and Drink”. It’s a beautiful place to gather for a fine meal. My colleagues and I dined on filet mignon, scallops, mashed potatoes and fresh salads. My table mates Steve, Deb and Kyle were great dinner companions and we enjoyed talking about business, vacations, Joplin and life in general.

However, eating at Wilder’s Steakhouse was not a first for me. And as much as I enjoyed my companions, having a meal with them was not a first either. Although I think I could have argued for having a meal with Keller Williams agents AT Wilder’s Steakhouse as a first, I decided not to do that. I thought, instead, that I would stay open, and see what showed up, for today’s first. I was preparing to head home, after a delightful meal, and pleasant and engaging conversation with Steve, Deb and Kyle, when our server brought out dessert.

I had not intended to have dessert. However, when the server placed a chilled plate before me with three bites of three different desserts, I changed my mind. Arranged on my plate was a small square of lemon raspberry cake, and a tiny slice each of apple caramel pie and Hawaiian pie, a wonderful combo of chocolate and coconut on a flaky crust. Although I have eaten at Wilder’s before, I’ve never had dessert there and therefore had not had this sampler dessert that was not too much, not too little, but just right. My first had arrived!

And indeed, this was the perfect finish to the meal. While the Hawaiian pie and apple caramel pie were both very tasty, the lemon raspberry cake was amazing. Light, lemony, slightly tart, that bite was to be savored. At my table, we all agreed, it was delicious.

This year of firsts has taught me to go with the flow. When a first doesn’t work out or has to be postponed, it does absolutely no good to rant about it or resist what’s happening. I’ve found that as I open to other possibilities, another first, the one that was apparently meant for that day, arrives. Dear Dianna flew into the Joplin airport just as the meal finished up tonight. I’m so glad she was able to arrive safely. Perhaps I’ll be able to see her tomorrow. For this evening, though, Wilder’s Dessert Bites was the perfect first for today


Day 128: Keller Williams RED Day at Lafayette House



Each year, on the second Thursday of May, tens of thousands of Keller Williams agents across the US and Canada participate in RED Day. RED Day, which stands for Renew, Energize and Donate, is an initiative dedicated to celebrating Keller Williams Realty’s year-round commitment to improving our local communities.  Agents devote their time, in a wide range of projects, to renewing and energizing aspects of the neighborhoods in which they serve. 

RED Day initiatives run the gamut from rebuilding homes, refurbishing local parks, giving to local food shelters, hosting blood drives, beautifying beaches and so much more. Projects are chosen by each individual market center based on a need they see within its community.

Recognizing her leadership in guiding the culture of our company, RED Day is held in honor of Mo Anderson, Vice Chairman of the Board, Keller Williams Realty. This event is an entrenched part of Keller Williams Realty’s culture and displays the extraordinary effect a company can have when individuals come together to work as a team for the greater good of everyone.

I have participated in five RED Days since joining this amazing company, however, for my first today, I joined our Keller Williams Team in donating time, energy, products and money to Lafayette House in Joplin. Although I am very familiar with the wonderful services that this non-profit organization provides, this was my first time to visit there.


Founded in 1978, Lafayette House provides a safe environment for women and children whose lives have been touched by abuse and addiction. Working collaboratively, Lafayette House promotes self-sufficiency through education and encouragement while constantly striving to address the evolving needs of their clients and the community. They also offer alcohol and drug abuse treatment for women, provide behavioral health services for women, children and families and run a licensed child care facility that specializes in caring for children from violent and/or chemically dependent families. Their resale store, Second Chances, gives 100% of the store’s profits toward funding and programs for the women and children staying in the shelter. Clients of Lafayette House are able to get the items they need for their families from the shop, free of charge.

What a wonderful organization, making a huge difference in the lives of many people. Our team tackled several projects at Lafayette House, including an extensive kitchen and utility room makeover, donations of a variety of much needed items and landscaping, fence building and the installation of a swing set. I joined the landscaping group and we worked diligently and quickly to finish before the rain and thunderstorms hit Joplin this afternoon. My office also incorporates an additional event we call Cookout for a Cause, offering $5.00 lunches that include a grilled hamburger or hotdog, chips, cookie and a drink, to individuals and companies, with all proceeds going to our selected charity.  Lafayette House will receive all the money from the sale of these lunches.

Many, many hours go into RED Day, even before the actual day, with extremely dedicated people overseeing the event and the cookout. Local companies and affiliates donate food, materials, money, needed items and in some cases, their time to make RED Day a success. As Mark Ozman, an agent with the Indianapolis/Carmel Market Center said, “RED Day isn’t about cleaning up a park. It is a one-day expression of what happens 24/7 in the Keller Williams culture. It is seeing a need, discovering who can meet that need and then getting it done.”

I agree wholeheartedly, and I am so proud to be a part of a company that lives its culture and gives to its community!


Day 94: Keller Williams Wellness Day


One of the things I love about the real estate company that I work for is that from founder Gary Keller to my Team Leader, Vicki, Keller Williams cares about agents as people. They give us tools and training to be great agents, but more than that, they want us to be the best people we can be. Their values are: God, Family, then Business.  Everything they teach is built on that foundation.

Today, Keller Williams had its first Wellness Day, to promote a balanced and healthy lifestyle among its agents. Recognizing that being realtors and caring for clients, families and the community can be the priority, rather than caring for ourselves, Keller Williams set aside this day to focus on our health and wellness. My first today was to participate in this day of awareness about my health and to teach a session this morning as part of the Wellness Day.

Our local office did an awesome job with this event. Sandy Thomas coordinated the classes and activities. The day began with a run to a nearby park and back to the office. Then Shelby Allen from Freeman Hospital taught us about nutrition and clean eating. Listening to her share about the lack of nutrition in most American diets, I was glad I made a decision a month ago to change my eating habits! There are so many chemicals and preservatives in our foods. She warned us especially about products containing High Fructose Corn Syrup and Partially Hydrogenated Oil. She didn’t just share the negatives though, but ended by encouraging us to eat whole foods and gave us resources to prepare those foods in a healthy way.

I had the privilege of teaching a class on meditation next. A great group of people attended the class and after I shared about the health benefits of meditating I led them through a 20 minute relaxation meditation. This practice has been so important in my life and it is a joy to share it with others. After we de-stressed and released tension, Yvonne came in to guide us through stretches that emphasized opening the chest area and easing strain in the muscles of the neck and shoulders. We all felt so good after those two sessions!

Also included on the agenda today was a tour of a fitness facility that shares the building with us, 15 minute chair massages and a wonderfully healthy lunch. Israel did an excellent job grilling chicken, shrimp and veggies. The Wellness Day concluded with Zumba by personal trainer Jennifer Jameson, owner of Temple Fitness, and personal trainer Travis Renfro. That was fun as we learned new moves to upbeat music and got a workout in at the same time.

I love my company. Even more importantly, my company loves me and cares about my well being as a whole person. Thank you to Keller Williams Realty for desiring its agents to have a life worth living, and beyond making that a nice sentiment, for giving us ways to attain such a life.