Getting organized is a common New Year’s resolution but it seems to get pushed to March, typically one of my busiest months. In January and February people are usually too busy doing squats and crunches or too grumpy from diets and “sober January” to clean out their closets. However, this January I was deluged with calls. Despite the economic woes the media is reporting, plenty of people are willing to pay for the organizational help they need. Although I love feeling needed, truth is a lot of people could conquer some of these tasks on their own.

There is a benefit, obviously, to hiring a professional to assist us in so many areas of life. Tutors, coaches, trainers and others can help us achieve our goals. But if your budget is a factor, you will need to consider when you have crossed the line from learning necessary skills to using the pro as an accountability partner.

If you have no idea where to start or how to use a program on the computer or the equipment at a gym, you will probably need a session or two with a trainer. Later on if you get stuck or your progress slows, you might need to hire them again for a tune-up or to up-level. But too often, many people are basically paying for a babysitter. Which can be nice if money is no object.

Once you know what needs to happen for you to get organized or learn French or get buns of steel, there are ways to have your personal trainer always with you. We all have childhood authorities yakking in our heads. Turn that critical parent or high school French teacher who threw chalk board erasers at you into a motivating coach. Get in touch with your authentic, highest self and constantly ask her for advice. If prayer is your thing, use it to ask your higher power for guidance on whatever task you are tackling.

A friend with similar goals can take the place of the paid professional once you have the skills you need. Friends, however, are not as dependable as someone you hire to keep you accountable, so it’s important to plan to power through even if their goals change and they stop showing up at the gym or decide they aren’t up for cleaning out their garage after all. It’s a bummer, but a lot of times we have to “just do it” solo. For me, putting on my favorite music can be enough to keep me company and has the benefit of a psychologically motivating beat.

Usually, we have more information than we will ever need about how to achieve our goals, we just have to tap into it and get into action. As Maryanne Williamson, one of my favorite speakers on spiritual matters, used to say in the 1990s, “If we practiced only 10% of what we already know we would be Enlightened Masters.” Almost anything else, as any Enlightened Master worth his salt will admit, can be found on YouTube and Google.