Once upon a time, there was a boy who signed up for a race. He trained hard, and when he arrived to the race, he saw a starting line, but nothing else marked. He wasn't exactly sure where they were going, so he asked another person, "Which direction are we running?" and to that, the person replied, "I don't know, but I'm going to do my best." The boy went to another person and got the same reply... in fact, everyone around him seemed to be ready to go and do their best, but not one of them had any idea where the finish line was.
The thing is, there are a lot of people that want to succeed. However, they miss the most important part. They don't have a dream... a goal that they are striving for. Sure, they may have a vague understanding of it, but what good is knowing that there is that 'finish line' but failing to figure out what the course was and understanding how to get there? The desire to finish is very important, but being able to envision that finish line is just as important.
First step: Look at where you were.
If you don't know where you come from... or accept that that's where you came from. You won't really know how you're doing now. Also, when you look back at where you were, you'll be able to know that you're going the right direction, and have a sense of pride in the distance you've traveled.
Second step: Look at where you are.
If you know where you are, you have an easier time to discover what your next step is. If your foot is stuck in a bear trap but you ignore that and continue forward, heading towards your goal... it's not exactly productive. First know that your leg is in that bear trap, get it out, and THEN move forward.
Third step: Look at where you're going.
Have that goal in mind. After knowing where you were and where you are, the next obvious thing that still eludes people for some reason is to have that ultimate goal or dream. If you don't have the finish line in mind, and work towards that, you might not even be going in the correct direction. If we put all our efforts into something that goes against where we want to go... it's counterproductive. If you have that clear and concise goal that you're working towards, then you can put that energy to reach it.
These simple three steps are simple in theory, but when actually put into practice, it will be crucial to you making your plans towards success. Once you have a plan, it's up to you to follow that plan and work hard towards your goal. Obviously, there's more to it than this, but once you figure out where you were, are, and want to be, you have just taken a critical step towards achieving success.