The job of financial advisor is a difficult one. If it was not, more people would be doing it. The failure rate can be high. Some advisors work in large offices, others might be one or two person RIA shops. It can get lonely. Morale problems can develop when you constantly hear about other advisors gaining recognition and being wildly successful. Forbes has a top advisors list. Ditto Barron’s and the Financial Times. So does CNBC and other outlets. Not appearing on a list can be very discouraging. How can you pick yourself up and remind yourself of your value?

1. Life is like pizza. Life is not all about work. You do not get unplugged at 5:00 P.M., stand in a closet and turned back on at 9:00 A.M. You have other aspects to your life. Like a pizza, there are at least eight slices. These might include your relationship with your spouse or partner, involvement in the community, relationship with your children, your religious life, hobbies, health, financial security and yes, your job. Others might be soaring on the professional front. Your life has plenty of other moving parts. In how many of those other parts are you winning?

2. You have not walked in their shoes. We assume other successful people live perfect lives. Everything is in order. You have no idea. They might be successful at work, but underwater in debt. Their marriage might be in trouble because of an extramarital affair. They might have a problem with addiction. They might be estranged from their parents or children. They might have health problems. You might not be the top producer, but if you have none of the problems just mentioned, then you are the winner.

3. Are you free of compliance problems? You know compliance is like the secret police. They are always watching, always listening in. The objective is to get in front of problems before they become legal issues, to keep everyone on the straight and narrow path. Do you run a clean business? Do you have no lawsuits or complaining clients? Are the compliance folks happy with you? Then you are a winner.

4. What is the turnover rate in your book? You add clients. You lose clients. It happens. Advisors seek to build long-term relationships. You want to work with multiple generations. Is losing a client a rare or a frequent event? If your turnover rate is low, you are a winner.

5. How many years have your longest clients been with you? Longevity is a good thing. It takes far more effort finding new clients compared to keeping current clients happy. Do you have relationships where the parents, children and grandchildren are clients? When did you open that first account? You and those clients have weathered several market cycles. They stayed loyal. You are a winner.

6. How long have you been at your firm? A few years ago, a complex manager mentioned managing an office of advisors was similar to managing a professional basketball team. His point was people were on contracts and often looked elsewhere when their contract expired. How long have you been at your firm? Clients appreciate longevity, especially if they started their own business and are dealing with employee turnover. Clients want to know you will be committed to helping them in the long term.

7. What professional certifications have you achieved? Years ago, a Series 7 license was the basic qualification to be an advisor. Today, clients expect more expertise. You not only need to study and earn these certifications, you need to keep them current by earning CE credits. What designations have you achieved?

8. Do you earn a good income? Advisors are not volunteers. That is another part of your life. You show up at work every day to earn a living. Are you making a good living? Are you able to pay your bills? Do you have money to invest? Do you have savings? If you answered yes to these questions, that is a significant achievement.

9. Are you on track with your retirement savings? No one expects to die at their desk, carried out feet first. You might love your job but want to reach the point when continuing to work is a choice, not a requirement. You advise clients on retirement planning every day. Is your retirement on track? That is an accomplishment.

10. How long has your team been together? You might be a sole practitioner with a sales assistant alongside. You might be part of a several-member team. Competitors are calling you, making the case for you to join them. This is happening to your team members and assistant too. Do you provide a pleasant working environment with generous rewards? Does your team and staff choose to stay with you? That is an accomplishment.

11. Do you still prospect? Older advisors remember the days before annuitized business. The counter reset to zero every January 1, and you needed to find every dollar of revenue. Today, a large part of your business is annuitized. Some advisors see this as the opportunity to coast and pretend to work. Others are prospecting for new business and seeking to add clients up and down their current clientele. If you are growing instead of coasting, that is an achievement.

It can be easy to get discouraged when others are getting praise. You need to give yourself praise and credit for your own achievements.

Bryce Sanders is president of Perceptive Business Solutions Inc. He provides HNW client acquisition training for the financial services industry. His book Captivating the Wealthy Investor is available on Amazon.