5 Tips to Get You Through the Not-So-Good Days as an Investor

by | BiggerPockets.com

Most of the time, I have good days. But sometimes I have days that aren’t so good. Things don’t go as planned. There’s a setback or maybe a series of setbacks. I question if I’ve made the right choice or if I’m on the right track. I question myself.

These kinds of “bad” days happen to us entrepreneurs; they’re inevitable. But if you don’t handle them correctly, they can distract, delay and even cripple you.

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5 Tips to Get You Through the Not-So-Good Days

Tip #1: Remind Yourself of the “Why”

Before you set out on your new venture, you should have first answered the question, “Why do I want to do this or that?” Why do you want to get into wholesaling? Flipping? Apartment buildings? Why do you want to get out of your comfort zone and take on a bunch of risk?

Related: The One Question you Need to Answer FIRST to be Successful in Real Estate

What are your financial goals? What impact would the achievement of those goals have on your life? What would it allow you to do?

Perhaps $5,000 per month of passive income could allow you to quit your job or retire early. Maybe you can spend more time with your family or travel. Or maybe you could write that book or pursue your non-profit interests.

Your “why” might sound like something like this: “My goal is $5,000 per month in passive income from my apartment building portfolio. Once I achieve this goal in 3 years, I can quit my job. My children are the most important thing to me right now, and I want to be able to spend as much time as possible with them. There is no room for failure. I MUST and WILL accomplish this goal.”

It’s vital that you have a good answer to the “why” question. On this day, you will need to remind yourself why you embarked on this journey. Today you will need to draw strength from the answer to this question.

Tip #2: Be Grateful

I’ve learned that when things don’t go as planned and your frustration runs high, the best way to improve your attitude is to be grateful for what you have. Regardless of how bad your day is going, if you sit down with a pen and paper and start writing down a list of all your blessings in your life, you will be amazed at the length of the list.

This exercise will completely change the perspective on the problem or issue you’re experiencing and improve your outlook.

Tip #3: Lean On Your Support

In addition to answering the “why” question, hopefully you have at least one person who can support you. This could be your spouse, friend, or even a paid mentor or coach.

This person believes in you (sometimes more than you believe in yourself). When you’re having a bad day, your friend will encourage you. He may remind you of your goals and why they’re important to you.

They may also put your setback in perspective, especially if they’ve experienced something similar themselves.

Sometimes your major challenge is a little thing to your mentor. You might be worried that you’re about to lose money on a house flip if you lower the asking price to get it sold quickly. This loss might drain your savings or worse, require you to borrow money.

Without a mentor, this one loss might cause you to quit the house flipping business. On the other hand, a mentor, who may have experienced something similar in the past, could put your anxiety into a different perspective. He may argue that while unpleasant, it will not kill you, but instead might actually make you a better, stronger real estate investor.

Many successful entrepreneurs have experienced setbacks that actually propelled them to the next level of success.

Don’t let a setback put you out of business. Surround yourself with a mentor who can put your experience in the proper perspective.

Tip #4: Choose to Stay Positive

Instead of letting an experience paralyze you, choose to stay positive. I specifically say “choose” because you have a choice regarding how you perceive and react to circumstances. You can’t control a circumstance, but you CAN control how you react to it.

When something doesn’t go your way, instead of letting it get you down, say instead, “I won’t let this get me down. I choose to stay positive.”

I want to add that this is EXTREMELY difficult to do. I’ve been working on this for a couple of years now, and I am getting a little better at it. When I can simply accept “what is,” I can be at peace despite a difficult situation.

When my 7 year old throws a fit because he’s not getting what he wants, I tell him, “You have two options: You can throw a fit and get angry, or you can simply accept that which you can’t change and save us all a lot of grief.”

We have that same choice on a bad day.

Once I’m at peace, I can make better decisions and recover so that I can move forward.

Related: Working With Purpose: How I’ve Found Focus By Developing My “Why”

Tip #5: Continue Taking Action

Most importantly, don’t let a setback stop you from taking action. Continue pushing forward. Review your goals and the to-do list you created when things were going well. Renew your commitment to those goals.


Bad days are inevitable, especially for entrepreneurs. We continually operate at the edge of our comfort zones, and it’s difficult to control everything. While most of our days should be good (otherwise perhaps we shouldn’t be doing what we’re doing!), there will be times when things don’t go as we want. Remind yourself why you decided to do what you’re doing, be grateful for the good things in your life, lean on your support network and stay positive. Most importantly, don’t give up and continue taking action!

Talk about your last “bad” day. What happened? How do you stay the course even when things aren’t going your way?

I’d love to hear your stories!

About Author

Michael Blank

Michael Blank is a leading authority on apartment building investing in the United States. He’s passionate about helping others become financially free in 3-5 years by investing in apartment building deals with a special focus on raising money. Through his investment company, he controls over $30MM in performing multifamily assets all over the United States and has raised over $8MM. In addition to his own investing activities, he’s helped students purchase over 2,000 units valued at over $87MM. He’s the author of the best-selling book Financial Freedom With Real Estate Investing and the host of the popular Apartment Building Investing podcast Apartment Building Investing podcast.


  1. Darren Sager

    Excellent article Michael for all the reasons you stated. We should never forget the why. Never stop being grateful that we have the ability to do this. Lean on those who have the experience, either in person or here on BP. Keep focused and never stop doing whatever it takes (as long as its ethical) to achieve your goals. I’ve never heard of anyone who had achieved their goals ever say it wasn’t worth the price they paid.

  2. kris patel

    My TIC Tenant-in-Common investments in 2007-9 are all in trouble, will lose 2 out of 3. But investment in STNL Single tenant Net NNN lease is making it up in retirement. Mistake made, learned. Got into TIC because 1031X was easy, STNL lots of cost and headache.

    • Michael Blank

      Live and learn. People ask me if I regret getting into a particular bad investment. In hind-sight yes, but we try to do the best we can with the information we had at the time. Still we learn and try to do better the next time.

  3. Terrence Arth

    Michael, so the main question is, has your 7 year old ever listened to you and if so, what is the recipe so I can get it bottled and sell it so I can quit real estate the next time I have a bad day!!!!

    Very positive article, thank you.

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