January is almost over, and so, too, may be your memories of making a New Year’s resolution to get organized. Rather than viewing your organizing aspirations as hopeless, you might consider whether you’re ready to change. If not, you’ll need to address your lack of readiness before you’ll be successful at getting and staying organized.

Why is readiness to change important? Although getting organized may seem like strictly a physical process, there is a lot of change that happens inside one’s brain when going through the process of getting organized. Not only are you changing habits, but you’re changing how you think about yourself. For example, I’ve had clients whose disorganization prevents them from creating strong relationships because they’re embarrassed to have company in their home. Some have held onto unsatisfying jobs because they couldn’t get organized enough to do a job search. Underneath the surface of these obstacles was their fear of change. After all, what if, after cleaning up her home and getting organized, my client still didn’t have any friends? What if the client with the unsatisfying job couldn’t get a different job even after he got organized? Suddenly, their lack of a fulfillment seems more like a character flaw than simply a matter of disorganization.

Is fear and not being ready to change holding you back from getting organized? If you want to move past this fear and uncertainty, you might want to reach out for help. Therapists, social workers, and counselors are all potential resources to help you shift your thinking. I’ve helped clients who haven’t needed the aforementioned therapeutic help align their goal of getting organized with their values and aspirations so that they can achieve organizational success on their terms. Some key steps in this process include:

•Determining and taking action steps to get organized
•Creating a support network of family members, friends and coworkers
•Identifying a process for accountability
•Determining rewards for achievement
•Accepting backsliding as normal
Now that you know how complex the process of change can be in relation to getting organized, be forgiving with yourself if you haven’t achieved your organizing resolution yet. You can either do something to move yourself closer to being ready to change, or accept yourself where you are and recognize that you’re just not ready yet.

No matter where you are on your journey, I wish you simplicity, harmony and freedom.

Author's Bio: 

Internationally known professional organizer, author, and speaker Sue Becker is the founder and owner of From Piles to Smiles®. She enjoys helping people from around the world live better lives by creating customized systems to overcome their overwhelming paperwork, clutter, and schedules. She specializes in helping people who are chronically disorganized - those for whom disorganization has been a lifelong struggle that negatively impacts every aspect of their life, especially people with AD/HD. Her hands-on help, as well as her presentations, have helped thousands of individuals create substantial change in their lives.

Sue is Illinois’ first Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization. She co-authored the book Conversations on Success, and has appeared as an organizational expert on NBC News and the national TV show, Starting Over. A CPA, Sue has an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management.