A compass on a hand

How to be successful in life

We all want to be successful in life. And we all want to secret to being successful. And that means different things to everyone. For some, a successful life means a clear career path and enough money to be comfortable.

For others, it's all about meeting that one person who makes life worthwhile. We all have our own picture of what a perfect life means.

Of course, with so many different goals and visions, creating your own successful life will be different from everyone else. We are all on our own journey. This means the key to having a successful life is hard to define. It's cheesy, but we are all on our own journey.

However, having helped many people transform their lives and become successful and happy in their own way, I've noticed some things which are the same in everyone's journey. There are four key elements or principles which I've noticed bring success.

It's not exactly a formula for success, but it's as close to that as possible.

These four elements combine to help you reach your own success, no matter what that is. Having observed these four things time and time again. I've created a Vision GPS. This is literally your roadmap to success. There are many routes you could take; some will get you halfway there, some are detours. To get the life you want, all you need is my Vision GPS.

The Vision GPS

  • V— Vision
  • G— Goals
  • P— Planning
  • S— Systems


This is the big one—the most important piece of the puzzle.

It's your Pinterest board and your daydreams. It's what your life looks like when you close your eyes and dream. Your vision is what you imagine a successful life to be. Of course, it will be different for every person, but this is the part of the process where you can dream big. Want a six-figure income? It's possible. Want to overhaul your love life? Yes, you can. Maybe you want to start a successful side hustle that will replace your full-time job one day? Let's do it!

Your vision should be your driving force. With a clear vision, it becomes easier to follow up on the rest of the GPS. As well as being what you are aiming for, it should also be your motivation, the reason you keep going. Your vision is your “why”. It gives you the mental strength to push when things get tough and get through the bad days. You need a vision of a successful life in order to succeed.

Vision can be a scary word. From a very young age, we are taught to be realistic. We used to have dreams of being a superhero or a fireman or a ballerina, and eventually, we give up on those dreams. We stop dreaming big, and we grow up. We hear the word NO so many times, and we no longer bother trying and dreaming.

This is your permission to dream big again.


The next part of the Vision GPS is your goals. Like I said, having a vision or a dream can be scary and overwhelming. Many people don't know where to start or are too afraid to begin. Breaking down your dreams into actionable goals is the first practical step to success.

Goals can be a mixture of long-term and short-term aims that will take you close to your dream life. Having clear goals to achieve is motivational and inspiring and crucial to helping you stay true to your goal.

Suppose your vision is to change career paths. In that case, your goals could include: enrolling in a course to gain new skills, giving your CV an overhaul, attending an event in your new sector, and eventually, applying for jobs or internships.

Your goals should be measurable, practical, and, importantly, achievable.


I also refer to this as the planning process. If you've got a vision and you've got goals, you still need to plan the practicalities of each day. Making changes is overwhelming, and you need to take it day by day while still making sure that you are keeping your aim true.

This process is more than just coming up with a plan. It's about being flexible, learning new skills that will enable you to achieve your goals, and having a Plan B and a Plan C. Like the GPS in your car when one route is blocked, and your GPS suggests a new route and another.

The key to a successful life is able to adapt to new situations and react as things change. I've never met anyone who was successful in life who didn't plan and strategise their actions. You need to think about more than just what your dreams and goals are. You need to think about how to achieve your goals and dreams. This means being flexible and having more than one path in front of you.

Things don't always go to plan. But successful people know that being open to changes in plans is important. If you want to have life success, you need to make the planning process seriously. Like a long road trip, you need to plan fuel stops, traffic detours, food breaks, and you’ve probably got breakdown insurance. So plan your life like a road trip. Make plans, change plans, be open to new plans. You'll never reach your goals if you haven't made plans.


Think of this as your daily routine and habits. It's all very well having a goal and knowing what you need to do to reach it, but if you don't create systems that allow you to do these things, you won't get any nearer your goal. These systems can vary depending on what your goals and plans are.

Think about it. If your vision is to have a successful side hustle that makes money every month and you have some short-term goals and a plan, but your time management skills are poor, and you don't set time aside to work on your plans, then your plans will only ever be plans, not actions.

The systems you create to facilities your actions aren't always easy. Create time in your day to work rather than watch Netflix. Create a system of accountability with yourself and a friend that supports you. These are the procedures that you can go through every day until they become habits. It takes at least 21 days to form a new habit. For some people, it might take 6 months. You need to actively choose to implement your plans and create space and time for them and repeat it every day until they become natural. After this point, you need to make sure you continue with the systems you choose to help turn your visions and goals and plans, into your new reality.

Why the Vision GPS works

Car navigation displaying a route

Sandra Tan / Unsplash

The concept of a life GPS is as straightforward as the GPS in your car. Sometimes, you take a wrong turning, or there's a traffic jam, and you need to take a detour, but your GPS recalculates your route. It is open to change. It never deviates from the final destination, but it can change the journey.

Furthermore, your GPS gets into the details. It doesn't just tell you to come off at junction 2. It tells you to use the right-hand lane to come off at junction 2, so you can turn right at the roundabout. It's always one step ahead, but it doesn't skip a step, and it doesn't rush. It can even take into account things like fuel stops. It will adjust your arrival time based on your driving and can suggest faster or shorter routes. Some GPS can even tell you to slow down near speed cameras.

To reach your final vision of a successful life, you need your own life GPS. My Vision GPS is the guide that you need to be successful. These aren't steps. This isn't a formula. Each of the elements of the Vision GPS is important.

If you have visions and goals but no plans and no systems, your dream will only ever be a dream. If you have goals and plans but no vision, one day, you'll wake up and wonder what it was all for. Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to how to get success in life.

Just as there are many routes to take you from point A to point B. You might run into a few speed bumps and take a few detours, but with a GPS to guide you, you will get there, and you can achieve success. If you want to know how to be a successful person, you need your own Vision GPS.

What is the definition of success in life?

Defining success is problematic because it looks different for everyone. For some, success equals happiness in whatever form that comes. For others, success is financial security. Becoming successful in life is as much about the journey as the destinations. You might have a final vision of what a successful life looks like for you. But if it's going to take five years to achieve and those five years are miserable, you have to ask yourself if it is worth it. Perhaps it is, perhaps it isn't.

You also need to consider that a successful life means learning how to set life goals. Once a goal is achieved, you'll need a new goal. The process is never-ending. That's why I like to think of my GPS as a system instead of a formula. A formula implies you will reach an end and then stop. With a GPS, you can change the destination as many times as you like, but the GPS will still work.

As a life coach, I can help you set up your own Vision GPS. We will work out what success means to you, set your vision, and define your own success and happiness.

Let's build your own Vision GPS

Reach out and let me help you define your successful life.

Using the GPS to have success in life

Vision vs goals

Many people make the mistake of thinking a vision and a goal are the same. They aren't. And truly successful people know this. It's why the Vision GPS has room for both. Your vision is your overall aim. It's what you picture your life to be when you think about success. To achieve this, you need to have goals—lots of them. Breaking down your vision into practical, actionable steps, each of which brings your closer to your dream life, is the only way to ensure you are actually working towards making your life better.

Change your mindset: Set long-term and short-term goals. You don't jump to the top of a staircase; you take each step at a time.

Plans vs planning

I've met so many people who started out with a plan and tried to stick to it, no matter what. They start with such good intentions, develop a plan, and use it as a rule book. Do this, then that, and then that.

Unfortunately, as many of us know, life rarely goes to plan. This means people who focus too much on their plan rarely succeed. Planning should be a process. You will need to adapt and change, and you need to factor that into your plans. Planning is a process. It is ongoing and needs to be flexible.

Planning regularly allows you to adjust and stay on track.

As President Eisenhower once said;

In preparing for battle, I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.

Positioning for success means being flexible in your approach. Successful people are those who can adapt to new situations, change plans to reflect new realities, and will do whatever it takes to succeed, even if that means deviating from the original plan.

Routine vs systems

People talk a lot about developing a good routine. And making sure your daily habits and activities are positive is important. But even the most successful people can slip into bad habits and let their routines become stale.

This is why you need to flip the script and focus on developing systems that allow you to move forward. As you reach new goals, old routines will no longer be effective. It's easy to slip into a routine that will end up holding you back. Successful people focus on systems that allow them to take adapt and change their daily habits as needed. Routines can become distractions when you do the same things over and over again and expect different results. Focusing instead on creating systems to improve your life continually.

Half-assed commitment

Part of the reason I use the GPS analogy is that these aren't steps you can take to reach success. You don't do one thing, then the next and eventually reach an end goal. V-GPS is a guidance system. You need to effectively combine all four elements of the Vision GPS to succeed. It also shows you that you won't succeed if you aren't dedicated, patient, and willing to work hard. This isn't a formula you can half follow and get the same results. One of the main reasons people fail to reach their goals is because they assume that if they follow along, they'll get there. They don't try. You have to try.

My Vision GPS only works if you put in the effort. It's a guidance system to support you, keep you on track, and make sure you're doing the right things. But you have to put in the work and the effort. If you do that and let the Vision GPS guide you, I promise you'll see results you never thought were possible.

Getting started

Taking the first step to change your life can be scary. What if you fail? What if it goes wrong? That's what the vision GPS is there for. Everyone needs guidance, and everyone needs support, particularly when you are just getting started.

If you need a push, don't know where to start, or want to discuss the Vision GPS in more detail, get in touch, and I'll help you get started. How to be successful in life isn't hard.

As a life coach, I can help you refine your vision, set life goals, and I'll hold you accountable. With me helping you, your dreams won't just be dreams. I can give you top tips for success and show you how to get anything you want in life. Changing your life and being successful is hard work. It takes time and dedication, but you can succeed with the right support and the right guide.

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