I've spent most of my life studying success. I've always been intrigued by what causes one person to succeed and another to fail. Why does one person become rich, while another person seems doomed to a life of poverty? Is it due to where they were born, or the social status of their parents, or the academic education they received?

Yes, these external situations are indeed factors, but they are not the cause of success. The real source of success comes from following the principles of success; principles that work for all alike. If you follow the principles, your bettering your odds of success!

I've studied these principles over the last 15 years. From this study I've come up with five keys that are necessary for you to live the life of your dreams. This article recaps those five keys. Read them, study them, and then put them into action; soon you to will be living the life of your dreams:

Key Number 1: A Plan

Have a plan. Follow the plan, and you will be surprised how successful you can be. Most people don't have a plan. That's why it's easy to beat most folks. - Paul Bear Bryant, University of Alabama's Crimson Tide Football Coach

In order to live the life of your dreams you must have a written plan as to how you will get from where you are to where you want to be. If you have no plan, you will fail, and you can quote me.

A plan is a map which will guide you to your destination, without one, you're lost, and you'll never find your dream. Thane Yost said, the will to win is worthless if you do not have the will to prepare.

So develop a plan today.

Key Number 2: Passion

Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion. - Hebbel, German Poet and Dramatist

If reaching your dream is a road trip, then passion is the fuel that will get you there. You must determine what your passion is, and you must dedicate your life to living your passion, if you want to live your dream. You will never be truly happy if you're not doing what you're most passionate about. If you love to sing, then you must sing, if you love to dance, then you must dance, and if you love to paint, then you must paint.

Your passion will give you the ability to overcome the obstacles associated with achieving your dreams. Nothing worth achieving is going to be easy; passion gives you the strength to go through the pain of failure until you arrive at your dream.

So if you're planning on doing the impossible, make sure your plan includes your passion. One of my favorite quotes is by an unknown author and it goes, Above all, be true to yourself, and if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.

Key Number 3: Action

Great it is, to dream a dream,when you stand at youth, by a starry stream, but a greater thing, is to fight life through, and say at the end, the dream is true. - Poet Unknown

For every dream accomplished, there is a story. A story of sweat, blood and tears; if you're going to achieve your dreams, you're going to have to give your all.

You must become consumed by the dream. You must see it, think it and do it. I like what Mario Andretti the race car driver said, he said, If things seem under control, you're just not going fast enough. That's what I'm saying to you, if things aren't just a little chaotic, you're not moving fast enough toward your dreams. As the saying goes, you can't stroll to a goal.

Glade Byron Adams said, Chase down your passion like it's the last bus of the night. That's the determination and persistence that's necessary for you to live your dream.

Remember there are no short cuts to success; we must all take the same road.

Key Number 4: Faith

Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right. - Henry Ford, Founder of the Ford Motor Company

Your beliefs determine your actions. If you don't believe you can succeed, then you won't take the actions necessary to succeed. If you believe you can succeed, then you will take the actions to succeed, and you will succeed; it's that simple.

Faith in your limitless ability is required for you to live the life of your dreams. I think if anyone can succeed, then everyone can succeed. You were born to be a success, as cliché as that sounds, it's the absolute truth. Walt Disney said if you can dream it, you can do it.

Key Number 5: Teamwork

Teamwork is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results. - Author Unknown

The song is true, Everybody needs somebody. In order to live the life of your dreams you need a team. It may be your spouse, it may be your business partners, it may be your mentors, it may be your family, but everyone needs someone to support them and help them along the way.

Don't try to do it alone, because you can't. Learn to lean on others for wisdom, advice, counseling and support, and be sure to reciprocate the same.

We're all connected and we need each other, if I write, then I need you to read. If you sing, then you need me to listen.

In closing, go after your dreams, not because they're easy to attain, go after your dreams because you deserve to live the life of your dreams.