After ten months on the road, exploring possible places to move, I chose Richmond, Virginia.

Richmond? — The last person I met, before my last day of driving back, asked me, “Have you been to Richmond?”

I swear I had good reasons to choose it…but I’ll fill you in on those another day.

First, let’s talk about how hard it is to find a rental in 2022.

The first apartment I applied for got twenty applications in the first hour.

A condo got 350 contacts in less than a day on Zillow.

One night, I saw a new listing posted just before bedtime. I was the first person to tour it the next day.

I’d been looking for 12-month, unfurnished places, figuring it was time to move my stuff from storage in Chicago.

But this place was furnished, with a short-term, flexible lease…which would give me more time to confirm where I want to land around here.

I was so excited when the landlord said I could have it.

And I was so devastated when it shockingly fell apart.

I was supposed to sign my lease and get the keys on a Sunday.

Before heading over, I tried to send him my deposit and first-month’s rent via Zelle. I sent the deposit in one payment, no problem. But then, I couldn’t send the month’s rent because, I discovered, my bank limits Zelle payments to $1,000/day.

I texted the landlord to let him know that I’d sent a first installment and would work on getting him the rest ASAP.

He texted back: “Call me.”

  • Him: “How did you not know about the $1,000 limit?”
  • Me: “I’ve only used Zelle to pay people back for tickets.”
  • Him: “How have you paid for Airbnbs?”
  • Me: “In the Airbnb app.”
  • Him: “How…”
  • Me: (Simple explanation…)

Then, the conversation took a turn. –> He thinks I’ve been “flitting about” this past year. 🤯

I couldn’t stop the train wreck…

  • Me: “I understand it’s important for you to be cautious as a landlord. Can we please have a cup of tea?”
  • Him: “I don’t like tea.”

Friends told me I’d avoided a bad situation. I knew it was probably true.

But I couldn’t stop thinking of the apartment as a unicorn. That flexible lease. That screened-in porch. That neighborhood.

Most days, I believe that things (eventually) work out for the best.

I’ve lived enough years – and had enough hard things happen – to recognize that some of what I love most in my life wouldn’t be…if other things had worked out the way I desperately wanted them to.

When everything’s peachy, it’s easy to wholeheartedly believe everything works out.

The day after the apartment fell through, I believed it just enough to feel a little better.

When I felt a little better, I had some new ideas that pointed to new leads. — Isn’t it interesting how that works? 😉


“Love wins” for those who keep loving.

People who believe “I can do anything I put my mind to” CAN because they try.

“Slow and steady wins the race” for those who keep putting one foot in front of the other.

1) What do you believe to be true? (Easy on a good day.)

2) When life is hard, what would it be like to believe that with 1% of you?

3) What if believing it makes it true?

A couple of weeks have passed since the apartment fell through. I haven’t found another place.

At least once a day, I wish things had worked out differently with that landlord.

Then, I remember what I believe…and I suddenly have a new idea for where to look…or I refresh a site and look again…which makes it more likely that everything’s going to work out for the best. 🙌

Sheila Devi is an Executive Life Coach. She helps professionals in deadline-driven, high-stress careers (like law and accounting) to navigate personal and professional challenges so they:

  1. have more time to do their best work,
  2. can be the kind of leaders people want to work for, and
  3. have more satisfying relationships (such as marriage and parenting).

Interested in talking about how Sheila’s coaching can help you?

Email to set up a complimentary intro call.

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