You’ve heard it before: When it comes to accomplishing a big change, whether it’s making a career shift or releasing excess weight, your odds of success are much greater if someone else has your back. The primary reason most experts give is accountability. Makes sense. But what if there’s something else at play?

After all, no amount of browbeating from your spouse or friend is really going to get you that new job or force you off the couch. Actually, your cheerleading squad wouldn’t even know to get on your tail if you hadn’t in some way communicated what more you were up to in life. I suspect an important shift happens the moment you do two things:
1.) Declare your intention to the world; and
2.) Make a promise to someone.

You see, there’s tremendous power in writing down and verbalizing your commitment; in essence, making it tangible. To “declare” something is to “speak forth” into being. And when you make a “promise,” you “send forth” your word, binding yourself in such a way that someone (even if it’s yourself) can expect fulfillment of your promise in the future.

Pretty compelling stuff. What will you declare today to change for the better? Who will you seek out to promise with your word?