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ISS Blog

Feeling the Chill

Anyone who follows this blog knows I was in New Orleans all last week for a self-storage show as well as another conference. Before I left for N.O., temperatures here in Phoenix were approaching 100 degrees, and I was running my air conditioning. Today, I'm wearing a flannel shirt, and my typing is labored because my hands are cold and stiff. Last night, I actually turned down an invitation to ride up to Buddy Stubbs Harley Davidson to see .38 Special (part of Arizona Bike Week festivities) because it was too damn cold.


The chill in the air matches the chill in my soul these days. It's spring, a time when the earth awakens and people get generally giddy, but I'm just not feeling it this year. I admit it I'm experiencing a bit of ennui.


But like any writer turned businessperson, I figure there's a way to share this and turn it into something fruitful. So I start thinking ... I know how this relates to my personal life, but how does it tie into my professional world, to self-storage and our ISS readers? I ask you: Don't you ever feel ennuia feeling of weariness and dissatisfactionin regard to your self-storage operation? I knew you would understand!


It happens to all of us from time to time ... We get "glass half empty" syndrome. OK, so what do you do about it? You're trying to run your self-storage facility (or development company or management company or whatever the case may be). Day in and day out, you deal with customers and their traumas, troubles, complaints. For a site manager this also means battling delinquent tenants, crime, negative press, leaky roofs, cracked pavement and abandoned goods. You have to canvas the neighborhood for commercial accounts and stay on top of marketing, even when you don't feel inspired to do so. You got to keep them units rented, keep the property fresh and clean, juggle all the details. It's a lot to do.


I mostly spend time in this blog talking about this or that self-storage happening, trying to provide relevant info readers will find useful or interesting. This is one of those days when hot news seems secondary to the big news: Life is happening, people. Right now. Even as you're showing that unit, filling out that paperwork, running that report. Outside, something green is poking up from beneath the detritus. It's true in the world, and it can be true in your life and in your business too.


So look for something green today. It might be anything: A customer who smiles and says "Thank you." A phone call from someone you haven't heard from in a while. Maybe a task you dread will take less time than normal, or a co-worker will take care of something without being asked, just to be nice. Maybe you'll hear a quote that strikes home or a new song you like.


Whatever it is, take a moment to recognize it and remember to look for more, every day. It helps keep the ennui at bay.


Me? I'm going to drink a cup of hot coffee and re-read one of my favorite poems. Maybe that'll warm me up.

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