Emptying our Psychological Closet

By Carole Levy

To create change and novelty in our life, we first need to empty our psychological closet.


We don’t need to get rid of everything, but mixed in with our life experiences — events, conclusions, accomplishments, failures, dreams — are habits that clutter and confuse us. To create space for the emotions and experiences we really want, sorting through our psychological closet is invaluable. That means exploring perhaps decades of unproductive automatic reactions and “ego-triggers” that short-circuit our capacity to be great leaders.

For example, when I think others are judging me, I can get sarcastic. That was the way I survived growing up with my siblings and dealing with friends at school. DO I REALLY STILL NEED IT TODAY?


No. It clutters my psychological closet and overshadows my goal of being connected to my colleagues or my husband.

The best place I know to organize my closet is Learning as Leadership’s Personal Mastery workshop, in Sausalito.


Here, I’ve gotten to take stock of my life and organize my thoughts, emotions and behaviors. I’ve gotten to make choices about what I want to keep and have flourish, and what I want to let go of, in order to be an outstanding contributor and reach my highest goals.

What do you need to let go of? What new feelings, experiences or dreams would you like to create space for in your psychological closet? I’d love to hear your thoughts.


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