Happy New Year!I think one of the greatest misconceptions about being a realtor is how emotionally draining it can be. With a thriving business comes many people who, at any given time, are either extremely happy, angry, anxious, concerned, confused, bothered, relieved, incredulous or frustrated. And those are just the mortgage brokers! But, truly, it is a tough field to navigate day in and day out without the benefit of a therapist’s degree. It’s crucial to take a break once in a while, turn off the cell phone if possible and step away from the madness that is residential real estate.

Every year around the holidays I try to take a few days off to recharge and this year was no different. My wife and I managed to leave the children and Los Angeles behind for three days and visit a resort/sanctuary just outside of San Diego called Rancho Valencia. It was exquisite. Brisk, frosty morning air gave way to a bit of sunshine in the later afternoon. There were yoga classes overlooking grassy fields after which waiters were standing by to offer glasses of green, healthy juice of pressed kale, apples and celery (which was tastier than it sounds). Lazy days were spent reading by the fire and catching up on missed TV shows. There were massages, mud treatments, even a plan to take a hot air balloon ride (that was thwarted due to a change in the weather).

Maybe because I spend an inordinate amount of time in other people’s houses, I can appreciate it when attention is paid to detail and design. The most pleasant aspect of staying at this resort was how every decision, no matter how minor it may have been, was made with an emphasis on beauty. The color of one wall in the dining room, the ceramic pots decorating one of the outdoor fireplaces, the mini glass jug of orange juice sitting in the wooden milk crate, the accents of Spanish tile in surprising places. Even the teabags were attractive. Someone was probably sitting in a corporate office somewhere years ago debating the benefits of offering loose tea wrapped in delicately purple ribbon tied, tiny scented sacs versus a big grab bag of Liptons.  You know what, faceless corporate head honcho? I’m glad the pretty tea idea won because I noticed and appreciated it.

So, now that we’ve experienced a few days of pure relaxation and absolute escapism, I feel recharged and ready to return to the often emotional roller coaster that is West side residential real estate. When my phone rings with what might be a problem or headache, I know I can handle it with the calm and patience of someone who has experienced and enjoyed kale juice after a yoga class.

Welcome, 2016… I am ready!