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Letter from Steph

For many of the past years, I have flung the doors open to my life. I can envision a boomerang video I made back in 2018 of me at the Firehouse venue downtown, at a gate that was hip height where I am opening and closing it quickly and smiling before a sold-out event we hosted. I have literally and figuratively held the doors open for years. Hosted, entertained, sold tickets and sponsorships, welcomed, connected and introduced. It has been so much fun. I honestly still can't believe it has worked and so many of you have shown up. It has been a dream come true. 


But I have noticed something about doors: they open and shut. And for this quarter, I'm going to need to pull the doors shut for a break. 


The good news is I can open the door right back up, when I'm ready; but behind the door, in my inner circle, people need me. 


When I think about my friend with cancer (Lisa Sahlie, that I wrote about last month) and how my time with her could be limited, it's an easy decision of how I want to spend my time. At the moment (praise God) she's doing extremely well with her treatment. There is just simply no way I'd choose to miss time with her in order to plan a large-scale International Women's Day event in March, given the very limited “free time” I have at my disposal.

So this Q1, I won't be planning florals and speeches and balloon arches; Lord willing, I'll be talking about ports and stem cell transplants with her. And at work, with our team, our LPG team, we will be sending inside joke text messages to make her smile and helping her real estate clients, that she can't wait to get back to serving, as they continue to buy and sell homes. 


As an aside: it turns out our #workfamily thing is the real deal. I literally haven't been more proud of anything I have ever been part of than this group of people. Everybody wants to be with you at the top producer dinner in real estate, but the real question is who will hold your vomit bag in the hospital. It turns out, our team will do that for each other, despite the fact none of us have medical backgrounds. From fancy dinners to celebrating big sales, to dressing up for Halloween parties, to laughing until we cry at each other and also dealing with illnesses and the scariest parts of life, we're here for each other when it counts.


In 2024, time isn't a resource I am taking for granted. If I'm on the clock with my co-workers and friends (and it turns out we all are, we just don't know for how long), then I want to be as prudent as I have ever been with that time. 


Not that long ago, I wouldn't have been wise enough to know how to shut the public door on my life. 


And I do not mean to sound prideful when I say this, because the Lord knows I wish I had never had the experiences that helped me gain this ability, but I can handle an absurd amount of stress and pressure. And I do often. It is what helps me be a good leader and it is how I've managed to grow a business while having a child with such profound medical and special needs. 


BUT, far too often, this ability hides, even to those closest to me, the truth that I need a break. 


Making things look effortless can be a curse. Because if it looks effortless it is almost without question, not. Someone has worked very hard either at that moment or in the many years leading up to it putting in the work to make that happen. 


Is it time for you too, to shut the door? 


Protect your time? Your limited energy? 


For a quarter? A season? A Month? 

A year? Perhaps a long, long while….


Closing the door can be scary. What will people think? What might someone say? 


The people I'm worried about these days are in my inner circle and it turns out, when it comes to closing the door, they have a key for the office door, and at my house, they know the code, so they know how to find me anyway. 

Here's the thing: Your people always know how to find you. 


So don't worry about if you have to shut the door from time to time. They will understand. In fact, they will probably help you shut it. 

And at least for some of us…here's the invitation from them:


Shut the door. Turn off the porch light. Twist the lock. Take a deep, long breath. Kick off your shoes and walk yourself up the stairs and get some rest. You need it, you've done a really good job holding the door open for a long time now. 


All the people who need you…and it turns out the ones you need too, they are all on the inside anyway. 


They always were.

The most wonderful think about our community is while I won't be hosting events for Inspi this quarter, there are plenty of ways to connect with places where the doors are wide open.




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