Here's what I do in a straight-in: fly it at cruise speed, and at 4 miles out, set power for final approach speed (you do know what that is, right? usually 15-17" or 15-1700RPM in a light aircraft; also, some engines need to be cooled more slowly than going straight from cruise power to approach power).
As the aircraft slows down, keep trimming the aircraft to stay on the VASI, and as you slow to Vfe for the different flap settings, bring those flaps in.
Full flaps should be in no lower than 500AGL for a stabilized approach.
You can adjust the 4 miles to suit your preferences and conditions (slow or faster, depending on skills, wind, and traffic).
"Full flaps when the runway is assured" is a rule of thumb. More important is to not make any configuration changes (flaps, trim, gear, speed brakes) below 500AGL in VFR.
If you learn how to do this, you will fit in with lots of different kinds of traffic, and you won't have the Baron on downwind have to fly 5 miles out because you're doing 60 on long final.
This skill is also worth learning because it you will have a mastery of the landing process and get you out of the slavish "do this, then do that, then do that" type of flying
Good approaches make good landings!