*The views presented are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the United States Department of Defense or the United States Navy.

What we choose to believe in life can either break us down or build us up. Many people know the reason for their existence, or their “why,” and want to make a difference. They just need the “how” to achieve a successful life. 

There are seven checklist items you must do to transform your life from famine to abundance—and be more successful in every aspect of life. These ideas will also help you transform your life and the lives and those around you.

Follow this concise list of seven checklist items for success and reach new heights!


Have goals for your life, short-term (daily to yearly goals) and long-term goals (1-10 year goals). Most importantly, have daily goals. Always remember that even the most skilled pilot flying the most sophisticated aircraft in the world will not be able to fly to his or her final destination without a flight plan and a clear destination. Even the best shot in the world cannot hit a target without aiming. Yet many of us conduct the most expensive vessel ever created—our life—without any goals. To call this insanity may be an understatement.


Pledge to take action on every intuition and idea you conceive in your mind about your goals during the day. Apply The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins to take instant action on every goal-related thought. Your sub- conscious mind is always working to bring ideas, opportunities, and people to your life to help with your goals. Act on these intuitions; they are the voice of your subconscious.


Have the courage to go the extra mile with everything that you do, each and every time. Never let yourself be outworked by anyone. Working hard is the greatest equalizer in life. Have the courage to remain enthusiastic and do everything with a smile on your face and genuine desires to help and serve those around you. Have the courage to be flexible and to adapt when the situation demands it. Have the courage to maintain your integrity at all costs. It takes years to develop a reputation for integrity, but it all can be lost in an instant.


Your time is your most valued possession, but it is usually wasted by the poor while cherished like a treasure by the rich. Always remember that human resources, starting with yourself, are the greatest resources in the industry. Be genuinely interested and enthusiastic about every- one you meet. Learn about them and be sure to remember the name of everyone you meet. Always value yourself and adopt the appearance and the gravitas of a Chief Executive Officer. Others will judge you by your actions, your appearance, your character, and your communica- tion. Dress in a way that someone would identify you among your peers as the CEO. Remember to fake it until you make it.


The most efficient way to invest in yourself is through hard work. Always invest in yourself in terms of learning about your profession. Seek to cre ate value in yourself and in everyone around you. Always consider hard work to be the deposit into your account of success. While criticisms may act as unauthorized withdrawals from your success account, they can be converted to assets if you learn from them. Don’t be cheated by them; instead, accept them objectively and learn to use them toward your growth.


Don’t wait until you make it before giving back. Your cup doesn’t have to be spilling over before you can start sharing the drink of hope for a more successful future to a thirsty soul in the desert of life. Seek to know what people around you want in life and help them get it. While it can be an uphill battle to become successful, always remember that just like a father wants the life of his children to be better than his own, so is the desire of your Creator. While you are on your quest to a more successful life (and even after realizing your goals), seek to invest in people. The truth is most people want to be successful, but the key is also to want to help others to be successful. The problem is most of them don’t know where to start and are sometimes focused too much on what they do not have (i.e., lack of experience, lack of money, physical limitations). Any successful person knows that in the quest for success it is not what you don’t have that will hold you back, but instead what you do have (i.e., your life, your passion, and your desires) will make you successful. It is counter intuitive to focus on what’s lacking when what you want is to become successful. Whatever you focus on will persist, grow, and continue to be the center of your focus and attention.


May your legacy be one of giving back and making a difference in the lives of people around you. Moving forward, you can lay the path to your legacy by applying the acts of kindness you have received along the way to your current situation. Move forward seek to perform more acts of kindness to others and give more in terms of the time you spend with them, the smiles you bestow on them, and the words of encouragement you speak unto them. Each one of us on this Earth is too precious and too rare to leave this world without making a positive impact in the life of those around us and the lives of those who will come after us.