Alice Walker is the new President of the Greater Nashville Association of REALTORS and was yesterday sworn into office along with the Board of Directors (of which I am a member) at the final Membership Meeting for 2010 of the association.
As is customary, the outgoing President Lucy Smith offered a very gracious and moving speech with much gratitude for those REALTORS who have been so generous in Spirit during this year of tough market conditions, local disaster (the May Nashville Flood), and the association’s continued support of Habitat for humanity (14th home built this year).
Clearly, Lucy had her work cut out for her during her term in office and handled these challenges with grace and unfaltering resolve to do whatever it would take to help people in need.
When it came time for Alice Walker to deliver her “acceptance speech”, those in attendance had no clue what was about to happen.
We live in a time and work in an industry (Real Estate Sales) which is riddled with FEAR. It might even be arguable that “FEAR MONGERING” of the media is the general order of business to the degree that we sometimes wonder if the validity of Home Ownership is under attack . . . even to the extent that the National Association of REALTORS’ primary marketing campaign is entitled “Home Ownership Matters”.
This next year 2011 opens with many reasons to be fearful. Even as I write this blog post, there are legislators attempting to Limit or eliminate the “MID” Mortgage Interest Deduction . . . at a time when the markets are near the bottom . . . Unemployment is high . . . and clarity of the “rules” of Mortgage Financing is so murky that there are ZERO investors (not even the government) who feel good enough about the securitization of Mortgage Backed Securities to invest in them . . . thereby significantly restricting the flow of money.
We have many reasons to be fearful. Over a Million Real Estate Sales Professionals are defending their livelihood and the validity of home ownership for the 75 million (or so) home owners in this country.
As luck would have it, this is Alice Walker’s year to lead our association.
How will she do?
If her speech is any indication, Alice will lead this association masterfully such that the collective membership of 4000ish REALTORS in Middle Tennessee will thrive and serve the public with no fear.
The right people DO show up at the right times . . . Alice is the right person for NOW for GNAR . . . PERIOD!
Why am I so sure of this?
Alice’s speech was not about “change” or adapting or lamenting our position or regretting the past or point fingers of blame . . . It was not an inflated passel of empty promises and hope . . .
What this speech was about was all about pulling the skeleton out of the closet – the dead moose out from under the table – naming the elephant in the room . . . FEAR!
FEAR is the force we must reckon with in order to do our best in the coming year.
“I am fear. I am the menace that lurks in the path of life, never visible to the eye but sharply felt in the heart. I am the father of despair, the brother of procrastination, the enemy of progress, the tool of tyranny. Born of ignorance and nursed on misguided thought, I have darkened more hopes, stifled more ambitions, shattered more ideals and prevented more accomplishments than history could ever record.
“Like the changing chameleon, I assume many disguises. I masquerade as caution. I am sometimes known as doubt or worry. But whatever I’m called, am still fear, the obstacle of achievement.
“I know no master but one. It’s name is understanding. I have no power but what the human mind gives me, and I vanish completely when the light of understanding reveals the facts as they really are, for I am really nothing.
“You see, if you have the courage to acknowledge your fears, you will be taking the first step toward controlling them instead of them controlling you. And if you take the next step toward understanding, you will be able to move past them to compassion,… perhaps even to love.”
How are you facing the coming year?
From fear . . . or understanding?
I’m just sayin’
Thank you Alice!