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RISMEDIA, April 10, 2009-Most people live their lives like they watch the television. The remote control is in their hands and they have the power to change the channel to any show they can possibly imagine. But they don’t. There is opportunity to experience anything they can dream. But they don’t do anything. They are content to simply watch whatever is on, rather than choose what they really want.

The most important beginning principle for creating greatness in your life is to recognize and then utilize the principle of personal power and personal accountability.

Every person comes with the built-in ability to choose their actions and reactions for any given set of circumstances. How we use this ability will ultimately determine all of the outcomes we will experience in our lives. Those who attain the greatest successes in life do so, not because their circumstances have been dramatically different from others, but because their choices have been. It is our personal choices and accountability that have the most significant impact on the kind of lives we will lead.

Many people do not realize that even the so-called “little moments” can have great impact, and it may be easy to justify not giving our attention to them because the consequences may not be immediately apparent. However, an ancient proverb shares this great truth in a different way; “The greatest walls are build with the smallest bricks.” Our lives are the same, and we must begin with the little things.

Now, how will you know which little things really deserve your attention?

There is an easy solution for us in prioritizing all things.

Before beginning to sort out “life things” we need to have a system in place. It’s like building a puzzle. In order for the little pieces to be productive and have value we need to understand what the big picture looks like. Our big picture is essentially defining what we want our life to look like, who we want to be and the legacy we want to leave behind. Many people do not invest the time to answer these important questions. However, if you can do this one step at a time, you will find that all your questions will instantly become clear, and you’ll be on your path to success.

But what is success?

The definition is different for every individual, and only you can define your view of success. Understand that success is a journey and not a destination. It can never be a spot of permanent completion. Success is akin to continual growth. Success is a matter of finding appropriate balance while you are in motion rather than finding a comfortable resting place to stagnate.

Lasting success is found in the balance of four independent elements. Notice that each of these success pillars begins with “your feelings about…” Success is very much attached to your feelings, and gratitude is a significant part of feeling successful.

Your feelings about wealth – Success in this area is not based on a specific number on a bank statement. In fact, it has very little to do with money. But it has everything to do with how you feel about what you have. Do you have enough to meet your obligations? To live the life you choose? To be free to pursue the things which are meaningful to you? There are many people who are extremely rich, but not wealthy. How do you feel about your currently level of abundance or wealth?

Your feelings about your health -Success has very little to do with quantity of a given thing or an outside measurement. Instead, it has everything to do with the feelings relating to a certain thing. There are many who suffer from disease, disability and challenge who feel very successful in this area. Your feelings about your own health are the important consideration for this issue.

Your feelings about your relationships – David O. McKay, a religious leader, said it best when he stated that, “No success can compensate for failure in the home.” Everything starts in the home, but relationships also include everyone you interact with. Once I had the opportunity to climb the tallest mountain peaks in China known as the Huangshan Mountains. After hours of climbing, our group finally reached the tops of the beautiful mountains. The sun was just rising and we were so high up we could literally see the curvature of the earth; it was exciting. I turned to one of my associates who had made the climb with us. I excitedly expressed how beautiful and exciting this scene was, but his face turned to a look of confusion. “Wo bu dong,” he said as he looked at me. That’s the Chinese words for “I don’t understand.” In that moment, our language barrier prevented us from sharing this marvelous experience with each other. The same is true in our lives. The fullness of success is only enjoyed when we have the ability to share it with another.

Your feelings about your self-achievement, dreams and spirituality – What are your inner most yearnings? What is your connection to things of the spirit? How do feel about these things? Are your needs being met in this area? In some ways this area is slightly more important than the others. It’s really more of a foundation than a pillar. Until you have these elements being met in your life you cannot inspire or lift another to their greatness. Without this, you are a lot like a lifeguard who can’t swim. When you know who you are and you’re confident you are headed in the right direction, magical things happen for you and those around you.

Take a moment right now and stop what it is you are doing … invest this time in you. Take a careful look at these four areas in your life and consider how satisfied you feel about them. How do you feel about your wealth, health, relationships and self-achievement, dreams and spirituality? What would the situation look like if it were ideal for you?

You may not know all the steps to get where you want to go, but as you look at the significant little steps, the big ones will appear.

Decide that what you will play on your television of life will be the programs you want to watch. You don’t have to sit through someone else’s dream. You have the power to turn your life into what you want it to be. It can be a spectacular adventure, romance, thriller or comedy; anything you dream. What can you do right now to create the life you want?

Remember it is up to you.

Douglas Vermeeren is the creator and producer of the film, “The Opus,” which focuses on taking a vision, turning it into a plan and putting it to performance. He is also an international speaker and author on goal setting and human performance. As the author of “Accelerated Achievement” and “Amazing Success,” Doug has developed a concrete method for goal setting and maximizing potential through more than 400 interviews with top achievers.

For more information, visit or