Money, we all want more of it, but feel guilty about that, and although we know there’s more to life than just how much you have in the bank it’s the common fallback to look at when it comes to considering our success in career and business.

I’ve often noticed my highest earning months are the months I am least fulfilled, having less time for myself, feeling over stressed and over worked.

If money is the way you’re measuring success then you’re missing out on a lot…

What about other ways to measure your success? Since going freelance and becoming my own boss I’ve started to look at things a little differently. Here are 5 ways I measure my success each month, rather than looking at my finances, and I’m all the happier for it!

Your free time

Having money in the bank is great, but if you’re working from 7am to 7pm, and working weekends, what is the point? You don’t have the time to spend that money, or put it to work helping you to do the things you enjoy! Having free time is one of my number one goals in my career now, time to play guitar, read a book, walk my dog or see friends. Prioritizing free time over earning more money once I’ve hit my income target for the month changed my life. I went from stressed and overworked, resenting the hours I was putting into work, to happy and chilled, able to actually spend some of the coin I have sitting in my bank!

Your happiness

Do you enjoy what you do for work? Or do you lay awake at night dreading the day to come? We spend so much of our time at work that if it’s something we really don’t enjoy it affects all of our life. We’ve all had that awful boss who made our life a misery, or that terrible project which had us crying into our pillow each morning. If your work makes you miserable then it’s not worth it, life’s too short to spend most of our adult waking lives working in a job which has negative impacts on our mental health.

The feedback you get

Happy workers are productive workers and if you’re not loving work it can often impact on your performance. Since going freelance I’ve had nothing but positive feedback from clients on the quality of my work and other freelancers I’ve spoken to say the same. Being freelance means you’ve got control and ownership over the whole piece of work, and I have my coaching clients reporting back that they’ve found a sense of pride and achievement in their work again since making the leap to freelancing, after it being lost for years in the corporate bubble

How in alignment your work is with your goals

Do you have a 5 year plan? Is your life’s aim to help people, educate the masses, be creative? If your work is not in alignment with these goals then maybe its time to make a change. We all have goals and plans we’d love to complete but if our work doesn’t align with them it makes it a hell of a lot harder to progress towards them. Trying to study after work, or build a business, or change career is incredibly hard, the motivation you have will soon run out, so why not try and look at the success of your work not as how much you earn but how much it’s going to help you reach your goals?

The quality of your relationships

This is such a biggie. When I used to work full time and commute to London every day for 2 hours each direction it affected my relationships so much. I’d get home in the evening, exhausted, able to do nothing but lay in front of the TV and scroll Instagram looking at other people leading my dream life. My husband and I would exchange a few words before going to bed and doing it all again. It wasn’t a healthy way to live and it sure wasn’t healthy for my relationships. Measuring success by the quality of my relationships is one way that my success has rocketed, my husband and I have quality time together all week now, we work together and help each other reach our goals, and we are able to communicate and have fun together now we’ve ditched our killer commute and relocated our offices to our home!

Changing my perspective on what success looked like was a real game changer. I now prioritize my relationships, happiness and autonomy over my time and the projects I work on over how much money I earn. Although I always earn enough to pay my bills, add to savings, and be comfortable, raking in money at the expense at the rest of my life has gone out the window.

What would success look like to you if you ignored the financial side of it? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear what it would mean to you.