As we embark on the first month of a brand new year, most of us have made them, New Years resolutions that we have every desire and intention to keep, but sometimes find it difficult to follow through. Many of us may want 2007 to be the year that we finally shed those extra pounds, exercise more, eat healthier and enjoy a less stressful and happier life. As we take down our trees and put away the decorations, it seems bare without the company of garlands, lights and wreathes, but before we fill in those empty spaces with more stuff, we can use this as an opportunity to continue cleaning out more spaces in our homes, recycling the old to usher in the new.

I know how good it feels as I did a gigantic purge back in July preparing my home for the market. The build up of clutter that was strewn from top to bottom, in every corner and closet was overwhelming to look at and I felt paralyzed as I didn’t have a clue where to begin. I took a deep breath, rolled up my sleeves and started tackling one room at a time… one pile at a time. With my favourite music on full blast, I scraped, scrubbed, washed and vacuumed every square inch of my house. As I made more and more progress, it became quite a cathartic experience and I happily contributed to the garbage collectors physical workout with heavy couches, boxes, and garbage bags filled with stuff that I lugged to the curb. Finally, my house was in the condition that I wished I had lived in for the past 17 years, and when I was done…it felt so good…amazingly good!

Some of my friends commented on how hard and stressful it must have been having to keep my house in “showing condition” for such a long time, but the hard work had already been done, maintaining and keeping on top of things was relatively easy.

I absolutely loved the feeling of waking up, leaving and coming home to a clean and clutter-free home, even my teenagers got on board keeping their nooks and crannies tidy.
I also became aware of how much lighter I felt, lending support to the Feng Shui experts who believe that we are energetically to every single item in our home.

I’m sure you can imagine what it would look like if we were to ignore and leave our living quarters unattended for some time by not doing the dishes, the laundry, picking up after ourselves or cleaning the floors and bathrooms!

Just as our energy is attached to all the stuff in our homes, our energy is also attached to every single experience we have ever had. Depending on how well we have kept up with our housework over the years, there may still be dust bunnies of disappointments, cobwebs of resentment and control or piles of guilt and hurt. Even if we’ve maintained a well kept outer yard, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t still a mess lurking behind the front door…of our heart.

I know how good it feels as I had opened the door to my inner house long before I listed my home for sale. I cleaned up the piles of unforgiveness, vacuumed out the anger, polished off the blame and scrubbed away the fear and just as we sometimes hire a cleaning service to help us do a more thorough cleaning of our homes, I chose to hire a coach to help me get to all the stuff I had swept under the rug.

I realize how daunting the task is to put on those rubber gloves and start tackling the mess, but as we purge the past and clear out the cobwebs of the closed closets in our hearts, we’ll feel lighter, healthier, less stressed, happier and more energetic…well on our way to following through on those New Year’s resolutions!

2007 could be the year….your year to do a big house cleaning!

You probably wouldn’t expect your children to take charge with broom and mop in hand and start cleaning your house from top to bottom or your students to come over and clean out your closets but in truth we do, as we sometimes make them responsible by being on the receiving end of the negativity, stresses and bad days that we bring into our classrooms and home from work.

If we could clean out just one little pile everyday, we would continue to uncover an even better, cleaner version of ourselves and as we look in the mirror throughout the year ahead , we would see this shining example reflected back to us as our children would have also been inspired to have a renewed connection to their own self-worth allowing them to behave with more kindness and respect as they too are no longer drawn to bullying or violence to avoid facing their own piles of pain or turn to alcohol or drugs to numb out the knick knacks of not good enoughs in order to feel good or happy.

I hope to continue to inspire you throughout 2007 to connect with more joy and laughter in your life by being a voice of awareness of the corners that may still need some attention as you continue clearing out your own path in the pursuit of happiness, picking up those brooms, mops, books, movies, seminars or coaches along the way…whatever tools you need to get the job done.

Let’s make 2007 the year all of our houses are spic and span so you don’t have to wait 17 years as I did to wake up every day to enjoy a clutter-free home.

Live, Laugh and Love well in 2007!

Author's Bio: 

Jo-Anne Cutler is committed to making a difference in the world as an awareness coach, author and speaker- giving a voice to millions of children who are in need. She discovered that, as a mother and role model, she had continued cycles of unhealthy behaviours that she was unknowingly teaching her own children. However, once she became aware of how her words and reactions impacted them and others in her life, she made a conscious choice to change. Awareness is the key to any change and Jo-Anne’s passion for helping children find their voice and for it to be heard ignited her vision - to empower and inspire you to be the parent, teacher and role model the children of this world need you to be. For any further information please visit To receive Jo-Anne’s free monthly newsletter please send request to and to contact Jo-Anne directly please call 905-569-8334 or e-mail her at