Williams stressed in Perth that she is enjoying her tennis more these days and the way she laughed and joked her way through mixed doubles matches with her partner Mardy Fish at the Hopman Cup suggests a new attitude.
"I started this last year," she said. "Last year I had no pressure on me and I just enjoyed myself and had fun in every match that I played. I like that feeling.
"I put so much pressure on myself because I am a perfectionist, but I realise not everything's going to be perfect in life, there are bumps you have to deal with.
"I wasn't dealing with it last year. I had a court case, eight hours of every day and it was very difficult." Williams, her sister Venus and their father, Richard, were accused of reneging on a deal to play an exhibition match.
She added: "It's hard to sit down for eight hours, sometimes even longer, for over a month. The fact that I didn't have to do that (this year) pretty much explains it (her relaxed attitude)."
When Williams won the title last year, the only top 10 player missing from Melbourne was Belgian Justine Henin, who captured the French and U.S. Open titles later in 2007.
Henin has beaten Williams in their three most recent meetings and will be the favourite for the title in Melbourne, starting on Jan. 14, but Williams said she had another motivation to win the tournament.
Victory at Melbourne Park would take her to nine grand-slam titles, level with Monica Seles, Williams's hero growing up.
"That would be awesome," Williams said.
"She was definitely a big factor. I love her and I think she's a great person. She was my favourite player.
"I'm feeling really match fit and ready. I am never where I want to be. I am getting there. I can't put a percentage on it right now, but I am getting there."