While working with a client a couple of weeks ago, I noticed that she was repeatedly saying that she would never be able to do this organizing work without me. Now, I had heard this before, but this time I had some new information that made me stop to think what this really meant for her.

A couple of months ago I was introduced to a program called “The Winner’s Image” produced by Bob Proctor. In the program Bob equates our self-image to the auto pilot feature of an airplane. The auto pilot is set to a certain course and corrects should the plane veer off course. Now, think about self-image for a moment. Your behavior patterns are a direct reflection of what you believe about yourself. If you believe that you are a successful person and bring in lots of money each month, then you probably do just that. However, if you don’t truly believe that you are that successful, wealthy person, what happens when you do experience some success? You have a fabulous month bringing in more money that you ever have. Then self-doubt sets in and your self-image auto pilot begins to bring you back to your old course.

Getting and staying organized is no different from the success example. Hearing my client saying that she would never be able to do this without me and thinking back to other clients who I’d heard say the same thing, made me realize that their self-image is dictating the situation. No, they won’t be able to do this without me, if that’s what they truly believe. Their self-image is telling them that they can’t be organized or stay organized because they haven’t been able to do it before. Or because so many people have told them how messy and disorganized they are and they believe that about themselves. If you don’t truly believe that you can get and stay organized, you will not get and stay organized. If we move a little outside of our belief about ourselves, the self-image autopilot will bring us back to its original course.

So, how do we conquer this? Change your self-image. This is no easy task, but is guaranteed to get those behavior changes to stick. Create the fantasy or vision of what you want your life to be like. Are there people you can model? Write your new vision out in detail. One of the most important questions to ask in the self-image changing process is “Am I Willing.” Are you really willing to do what is necessary to make the changes you are seeking? Really think about this. If you really aren’t willing to make the changes necessary to be successful at getting and staying organized, maybe it really isn’t as important to you as you once thought it was. Once you have written out your new self-image it’s important to focus on the changes you must make and reviewing your goal regularly. As I said, this is no small or easy task, but one that is well worth the effort.

As you consider your goal to be more organized and productive, pay attention to the things you are telling yourself. Is your self-image dictating that you can’t be organized? If so, consider a self-image overhaul! It will be one of the best investments you ever make.

Author's Bio: 

Ellen Martin in the founder of A New Leaf, LLC, a company dedicated to helping people to clear clutter from their physical and mental environments so that they can live the lives they truly desire. If you liked today's issue, you'll love Ellen's powerful organizing training programs and products designed to help you streamline your office, home and life. You can learn more about Ellen and her programs at www.OrganizationalExperts.com.