On retiring from a 22-year career in banking, I was researching possibilities for a second career when I came upon a newspaper article about a professional organizer — a new term for me in 2006. The article made reference to the National Association of Professional Organizers, or NAPO. The name intrigued me, so I went to their website to look around. It didn’t take me long to realize: “These are my people!” I’ve been organizing practically since I was a child. It has been second nature to me ever since I can remember. Deep down I knew that I had found not just a second career — I had found my calling.

From my perspective, I could see professional organizing as the natural evolution not only of my educational background (I have a B.A. in Interior Design and an M.A. in Library and Information Science), but also of the many interesting and motivating years I spent in the corporate world. Some of my proudest achievements involved taking substantial numbers of miscellaneous documents from endless boxes of papers and pulling them together into neat, user-friendly packages. The satisfaction was not so much in creating something new, but rather in making order out of disorder.

This “order out of disorder” approach is what guides me in serving my clients. Rarely does a client hire an organizer to create something from nothing.  It’s usually to create something functional from too much. That’s why I start with a conversation with my clients about what their vision is for the way they want to live and what part their possessions play in that vision. This helps me to understand what is important to them and how the process of organizing can be tailored to a client’s needs and desires.

Often during the course of our conversation I find that what clients really are trying to tell me is that they want harmony, comfort and balance in their environments, and that they want to be surrounded by the things that they love.  I honor that. I also understand that change often takes time, so I don’t try to make my clients feel guilty if they’re not ready to make immediate changes in their lives in all areas all at once. Each client is unique, and I take great care to assure that I am in tune with a client’s level of comfort during the process of organizing. I‘m there to help a client make decisions, but I’m not there to make decisions for a client.

I believe that an orderly and harmonious space helps to shape the quality of our lives and prepares us to take full advantage of opportunities that come our way. The atmosphere of an organized space feels lighter and more energized, and it becomes easier to focus. Possessions should enhance a space, not drag it down. They should make you feel content and happy, not chaotic and miserable.

Helping a client organize a personal space often requires patience and understanding. Much of what we may be organizing might be highly personal and confidential.  That information goes no further than our organizing session, and I follow the NAPO Code of Ethics.

I am very fortunate to have had many helpful people in my life. I, in turn, take great pleasure and delight in helping my clients reorganize their home or office for good and fall in love again with their space. Please allow me to help you create a more Positive Space in your life.

                                                                    —Susan Klein
Positive Space Professional Organizers

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