02/13/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

The New Year's Declaration

It's a new year, so what better time for a new tradition? Perhaps like millions of others or as in years past, you've created one (or more) new year's resolutions without thinking twice. I encourage you to think again.

I never much liked the idea of new year's resolutions because for the most part I don't think they work. They more often resort to hollow promises than well-thought-out goals. They're made out of tradition or habit rather than conscious intent.

So for 2009, a year ripe with change, newness, and transformational beginnings, I've settled on something more powerful than the time-worn New Year's Resolution: the New Year's Declaration.

What's the difference between "resolution" and "declaration"? Plenty. Resolution is defined as "determination, strong will". It involves constancy, doggedness, and firmness. A Declaration is "an assertion of belief or knowledge". It is an affirmation, a testimony, an oath and at its most powerful, a revelation.

Resolutions take will power to live up to, and without a strong will (or rock solid support system propping it up), they don't have a prayer. They require effort, struggle, and work. Given this, they are set up to fail; rife with more inroads to be broken or sabotaged than kept.

Declarations, on the other hand, come from a point of decision. Decision necessitates clarity and emanates from that center within each of us which burns with empowerment and resolve. Declarations are a way of saying "damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead". They are more concerned with a starting point than an end result. And isn't that what renewal - each new year's gift to us all - is all about?

Here's my declaration for 2009.

I declare:

I will take action toward my dreams and goals even though I might not feel like it

I will get started on tasks or projects even though conditions are not perfect

I will persist even though I could procrastinate

I will write, and write regularly, even though it might suck

I will not use physical illness or discomfort as a reason to stop living my dream even though I could

I will give my body the rest, nurturing, and healing it needs even though it might slow me down

I will not worry or obsess about time even though it marches on

I will not cocoon myself from new opportunities even though sitting home in my pyjamas is more comfortable

On the other hand, I will allow myself the power to say no to requests which are not in alignment with my desires even though I could easily say yes

I will do what I want rather than what other people think I should even though they might not agree

I will dance like no one's watching even though they will be

I will communicate from love and patience even though I'm conditioned to scream and shout

And finally, I will live fearlessly even in the face of fear

A tall order? Perhaps, and I'll definitely need reminding and rereading of the above on a regular basis. But I declare, I'm tired of living any way else.

What's your New Year's Declaration? What do you aspire and avow to do or be in 2009 "even though"?