"Make A Promise Day" — May 4th

May The Fourth Be With You!

Yorktown, NY, Becomes First Jurisdiction to Proclaim May 4th “Make A Promise Day”

Media Contact:  Matthew Cossolotto

Phone: 914-245-9721



Yorktown, NY, Becomes First Jurisdiction to Proclaim May 4th “Make A Promise Day”

Matthew Cossolotto, Yorktown resident and creator of “Make a Promise Day” (May 4th — May The Fourth Be With You!), applauds Yorktown Town Board for adopting this resolution and expresses hope that other jurisdictions will follow Yorktown’s lead.

Feb 16, 2011 — Yorktown resident, author, and guest speaker Matthew Cossolotto, creator of “Make A Promise Day,” today applauded the Yorktown Town Board for adopting a resolution designating May 4, 2011 and every year thereafter to be “Make A Promise Day.”

“This is a very big step forward,” Cossolotto said. “Yorktown is the first jurisdiction to adopt a ‘Make A Promise Day’ resolution. But I hope and expect this is only the beginning. I want to thank the Yorktown Board for supporting this very positive and inspiring initiative. Now I’d like to see Westchester County adopt a similar resolution, along with New York State and other communities and states around the country. But the power of making a promise need not be restricted to the U.S. I hope other countries will adopt similar resolutions. My attitude is: Today Yorktown, tomorrow the world! So I encourage supporters of ‘Make A Promise Day’ to ask their local, state, and national authorities to adopt a similar ‘Make A Promise Day’ resolution.”

Following is the full text of the resolution, which was adopted unanimously by the Yorktown Town Board on February 15, 2011.


Whereas, Make a Promise Day is the only unofficial “holiday” dedicated to personal empowerment, goal achievement and integrity enhancement;

Whereas, Make A Promise Day encourages individuals to turn important goals into heartfelt promises thereby increasing the probability of reaching those goals;

Whereas, celebrating Make A Promise Day will have the effect of enhancing accountability, personal responsibility and integrity;

Whereas, the Town Board recognizes the value of highlighting the power of making and keeping promises on the part of local students, teachers, community organizations, businesses and political leaders;

Now therefore be it resolved, that the Town Board of Yorktown hereby designates and proclaims May 4th of 2011 and each year thereafter to be “Make A Promise Day” and encourages local organizations and individual members of the community to celebrate “Make A Promise Day” in a manner they deem to be suitable and appropriate.

By way of background, Cossolotto made a promise to his mother on her deathbed that he would finish writing a book he had been discussing with her, get it published, and dedicate it to her memory. The resulting book, complete with Cossolotto’s dedication to his mother, is HabitForce! How to Kick the Habits of FAILURE and Adopt the Habits of SUCCESS. Signed copies of HabitForce! can be ordered via Cossolotto’s website: http://www.ThePodiumPro.com.

Cossolotto’s dedication to his mother in HabitForce! reads:

In loving memory of my mother,

Virginia Hope (Ludascher) Butler

I did it, Mom! Finally. I can honestly say that this book would never have been completed had I not made that promise to you at home in Gasquet, California, a few weeks before you passed away. This vividly demonstrates the power of making a promise, especially to your mother!

Cossolotto’s forthcoming book – I Promise! The Two Magic Words That Could Change Your Life and Transform The World – features a foreword by Jack Canfield, co-creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. In his foreword to Cossolotto’s book Canfield writes:

When Matthew first told me about the heartfelt promise he made to his mother and that he was launching a special day called “Make A Promise Day” on May 4th, I was hooked. You could say he had me at “I promise.”…

Contributing the foreword to this book and being associated with Matthew’s inspiring “Make-A-Promise” project is totally aligned with my life’s purpose. I applaud Matthew for collecting and celebrating these uplifting stories about promises made and promises kept.

John Assaraf, best-selling author of Having It All, wrote this about Cossolotto’s “Make A Promise” project: “I agree completely with that there is something uniquely powerful about making a promise that goes beyond traditional goal-setting.”

Here are a few prominent examples of the power of making a promise:

Nancy Brinker, author of Promise Me and founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, promised her sister and breast cancer victim Suzy that she would help find a cure.

Bill Clinton made a promise to Chelsea that he would watch his diet and take care of his health.

Oprah Winfrey made a promise to Nelson Mandela that she would build a school for girls in South Africa.

NBC’s Al Roker made a promise to his dying father that he would deal with his weight issues.

As a guest speaker, Cossolotto offers several Personal Empowerment Programs (PEPTalks) to a variety of audiences including schools and colleges, corporations, government agencies, and nonprofits. Here are the titles of his top three PEPTalks:

The Power of Making a Promise: Make A Promise. Keep Your Word. Change Your Life. Transform The World.

The Joy of Speaking: Turn Stage Fright Into Stage Delight and Speak Your Way to the Peak

Success Is An Inside Job: Avoid FAILURE Traps, Get on the SUCCESS Track, and Reach Your Peak Personal Potential

About Matthew Cossolotto: A former aide to House Speaker Jim Wright and Congressman (now CIA Director) Leon Panetta, Matthew Cossolotto (aka The Podium Pro) served as a CEO-level speechwriter and communications executive at MCI, Pepsi-Cola International, and GTE. The author of several books including The Almanac of European Politics, All The World’s A Podium, and HabitForce!, Matthew offers a range of executive communication services and guest speaking programs. Please visit www.ThePodiumPro.com, www.MakeAPromiseDay.wordpress.com, and www.MakeAPromiseDay.com.   Follow Matthew and Make A Promise Day on Twitter: www.twitter.com/makeapromiseday.

February 16, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Article Published About Turning New Year’s Resolutions Into Promises

Making Resolutions That Promise Results

What’s in a word? When it comes to those heartfelt New Year declarations, says one author, it could make all the difference. 

By Tom Bartley | December 30, 2010  


May all your troubles last

as long as your New Year’s resolutions! — Joey Adams

The time has come to turn our back on the final ticks of a spent year and embrace the shiny hope of a new one. We resolve—and earnestly mean—to do better in our 12-month opportunity for renewal. But those New Year’s resolutions, they tell us, simply go in one year and out the other.

So, how can we improve the odds that we’ll live up to them?

Simple, says author Matthew Cossolotto of Yorktown Heights. Don’t make resolutions. Make promises instead.

“The word promise is important,” he insists. Accorded the respect denied resolution and imbued with a backbone that resolution has yet to achieve, your promise represents a “heart-centered commitment” that creates an emotional attachment, especially when made to a loved one. “We grow up knowing that a promise is something special. A promise is something we’re predisposed to take seriously.”

Cossolotto sees little value in making a resolution. “People don’t take it seriously,” he says. “So what’s the point in doing it?”

To underscore his conviction that promises carry a power all their own, Cossolotto is seeking to have May 4 formally proclaimed, “Make a Promise Day.” So far, the onetime aide to congressmen like House Speaker Jim Wright and Rep. Leon Panetta, now director of the Central Intelligence Agency, has received a warm reception from his hometown Yorktown town board. And he’s just beginning. Declaring, “Today, Yorktown; tomorrow, the world,” Cossolotto plans further appeals to higher levels of government. Indeed, given his choice of date for “Make a Promise Day,” Cossolotto may have his sights set even higher than this globe. “May the 4th be with you,” he says.

Cossolotto’s book HabitForce! is a testament, he notes, to a promise’s power. When his mother, Virginia Hope Butler, was dying, he recalls, they were discussing HabitForce!, which at that time was just a manuscript in progress. For many writers, manuscript-in-progress can be shorthand for project-never-completed. But Cossolotto promised he would not only finish the writing but also dedicate the book to her and get it published. “Her face lit up,” he says, recalling his mother’s reaction, smiling through her pain. “‘You do that, Matthew,’ she said. ‘ You do that!’ And I’m proud to say I did. I think she’d be proud, too.” 

Today, Cossolotto is focused on his forthcoming book, The Power of Making a Promise, which he will discuss at the John C. Hart Public Library in Shrub Oak Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. He’s also scheduled to appear at the Mount Kisco Public Library Jan. 15 (11:00 AM) and the Mount Pleasant Public Library in Pleasantville Feb. 5 (10:30 AM).

To make good on your promises, whether of the New Year’s variety or any other, motivational speaker Cossolotto recommends a seven-step program:

1.     Commit emotionally, by making the promise to someone you care about. 

2.     Be specific. Promise to lose 10 pounds, not just “some weight.”

3.     Be selective. Limit promises to the handful of things for which you are willing to put your integrity on the line.

4.     Start small. Tackle a few things you can accomplish rather than risk breaking a promise.

5.     Write it down.

6.     Make it public. Publish your promise on a blog, Twitter or YouTube.

7.     Follow through. Make good on your promise, for yourself as much as for others.

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About Matthew Cossolotto

Creator of “Make A Promise Day” (May 4th), Matthew Cossolotto (aka “The Podium Pro”) is an author, guest speaker, CEO-level speechwriter, and speech coach.  A former aide to House Speaker Jim Wright and Congressman Leon Panetta, Matthew also served as a top speechwriter and communications executive at MCI, Pepsi-Cola International, and GTE. The author of The Almanac of European Politics, HabitForce!, and All The World’s A Podium, he’s working on a new book with a foreword by Jack Canfield (co-creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series) about the power of making a promise. Matthew brings his Personal Empowerment Programs — “PEPTalks”— to colleges, associations, and corporations.  Visit www.ThePodiumPro.com and www.MakeAPromiseDay.com.

January 4, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment