I've often found it useful, especially during stretches of professional or personal frustration, to think of my life as a long strand of pearls. Each precious little orb is connected to the next one, and to the next. Let's say each pearl represents a desire, or a goal to meet. The only way to keep your life moving forward is to seize life by the pearls.

How can this strand-of-pearls metaphor work for you? Envision something you really want to be or do, and make that the last pearl at the end of a strand. Now break down that goal into achievable steps on the path to that grander accomplishment-steps that you can take every single day.

All of these are pearls on the strand of success. And the great thing is, you can wear lots of different strands of pearls. Just as there are gray, pink, Akoya, and freshwater pearls, you may want to be an accomplished cook, a better friend, a mom, a skilled painter or singer, too. So, pile on those pearls!

Unlike the real thing, goals and dreams are free.