What is the definition of success to you? When you think of success, do you immediately think of money? We’re all so accustomed to associating success with money. After all, a successful person in business is someone who has moved up the ranks of the corporate ladder, or has their own business that brings in lots of revenue. Right? But success doesn’t have to be associated primarily with money. In fact, looking at success through other lenses has so many benefits.
What are the benefits of defining success through non-monetary factors?
The first thing that comes to mind when answering this question is that there are so many things to celebrate and consider an accomplishment that do not have to do with money. For example, when a client has a “win”, that’s also a win for me. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of being on the receiving end of a very genuine “thank you” for something you did, created or delivered to someone, then you know the feeling I’m talking about. And is that not a success? Imagine getting hundreds of those a month. Would that not give you a feeling of being successful in your business? So the benefit of looking at the impact your business has on your clients and your customers is that it opens up your focus point. Instead of focusing on the money, chasing the money, looking at ways to make more money… you’re now focusing on creating more impact. And with that impact, you will almost certainly make more money, but you’ll do it in a way that feels good.
Secondly, when you focus only on the monetary measures, you limit yourself to being able to celebrate only one metric. But on the other hand, if you had several measures of success, such as the client wins described above, along with some social media metrics, referral metrics, free event sign-ups, email subscribers, and also (very importantly) non-business measures such as hours per week spent working, being able to take evenings and weekends off, feeling grounded and happy, or excited and energized… then you increase the number of opportunities you have to see “success” in your business.
Lastly, when you include things in your success measurement that are non-typical business measures, such as how much time can spend with your kids, your spouse or your family, or that you can take an extra day off to help a friend or family member out quite easily, or that you’re able to sleep in on a day when you feel especially tired, or that your work doesn’t cause you anxiety or overwhelm, or that you genuinely feel happy all (or most of) the time. These things aren’t your typical success metrics, but when you think of them as a measure of your business success, you begin to realize that the success of your business isn’t just in the amount of money it brings in, but in the quality of life that gives you. And that is an absolute game-changer.
A New Definition of Success
So in the spirit of changing the way you look at and feel about your business, in order to create more excitement, more satisfaction, more gratitude and more joy, let’s redefine success. Let’s define success using measures that actual matter in your life. Below, I’ve listed my top 6 favorite measures of success for my business and my life. Feel free to take as many of them as you want, and make them your own! And remember to add anything that matters to you and begin to track it.
Success Measure #1: Happiness
As my business grows, my happiness grows. It’s a direct correlation. I love every new stage of my business, every new program or service I create and offer. Sure, there are times I get a bit stressed out because I have a few things going on at the same time. But I am never unhappy. And if that can’t be counted as success, what can?
Success Measure #2: Location freedom
I’ve mentioned this before, but I have really enjoyed being able to take my laptop and work from anywhere in the world. I spent time in Lebanon with my parents a couple of times over the past year, and was able to do some work from there. I went on two unplanned holidays with my husband, and managed to get an hour or so of work done every morning, which was all I needed to keep things on track.
Success Measure #3: Owning my schedule
Being able to increasingly move things around such as launch dates or free workshops has given me the freedom to plan my days, weeks and months in a way that allows me to do all the other things I want to do in my life.
Success Measure #4: Client wins
I built my business doing something I love, and all my clients have businesses that also capitalize on things they love too. So when a client has a win in their business, they are so excited. And of course, since my business is built on helping them, their happiness has a knock on effect on me. It’s more than just satisfying, it’s energizing.
Success Measure #5: Giving back
It’s so heartwarming that all the entrepreneurs I have worked with have a giving back pillar in their businesses through which they support causes they care deeply for. I eventually want to have 5 causes that I support, and this past year I was able to support one of them in providing food to the hungry in Lebanon (owing largely to the devaluation of the local currency).
Success Measure #6: Feeling appreciated
We’ve all been in situations where we’ve worked hard and hoped for some appreciation which never came. One of my measures of success is how appreciated I feel every time I work with my clients through my business. And the more appreciated I feel, the more successful I feel. Because that’s a reflection of the impact that I made and which, in turn, was acknowledged.
Today’s a great day to revise your definition of success
Maybe some day the word success will no longer immediately bring to mind the correlation with money. Until then, let’s all do our part, largely for ourselves and the shift the way we see our own success. Let’s rewrite our definition of success and share it with all those around us.
If you found this helpful in shifting your thoughts and your focus, share it with someone who would benefit from it too!