04/27/2016 09:49 EDT | Updated 04/28/2017 05:12 EDT

3 Signs You're Giving Away Too Much Free Information

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Businesswoman with arms crossed

Is content really king? Sure it is. In this digital age we have a vast amount of free information at our fingertips and if we want to be seen as an expert we have to put ourselves out into the world and give free information through our social media channels, videos, website, and so on. But there has to be a limit if you want your business to succeed.

If you're wondering why I've elected to talk about this now, there is a reason. It's because April has officially become my most financially successful month not only in my business, but in my entire career. I reached a financial milestone that seemed illusive to me for so long, and while I'm not sharing the figure here, suffice to say it is more than triple the dollar amount I once earned in my corporate job. It's unnerving to share this, but I do so to encourage others. This is because financial and business success was not always my reality.

When I started my business, I was so keen to prove myself and showcase my abilities that I did a lot of work for free. A lot. Too much. As time rolled by, it caused major problems and in order to solve them I had to set extremely strong boundaries around what I would and wouldn't do without payment.

Is it a coincidence, do you think, that I succeeded financially as I simultaneously mastered these boundaries? Nope. And if you're reading this, there's a chance that you feel it's time to apply a similar method in your business. I want to help you, and so I'm making this article a two-parter. In my next piece I'm going to explain the steps I designed to greatly reduce the amount of free information I gave, and right here, I'm outlining the signs that this is something you need to implement.

You're broke

If I had heard this one a year ago, it would have really hit a nerve. And I don't say this to poke at you or upset you at all. But if your bank account is constantly in the red and your PayPal account is sitting at zero, there's a good chance it's because you are doling out way too much without financial recompense. People should be paying you for your great work and if they're not, that's a sure sign that something has gone awry.

You're p*ssed off

Of course you're p*ssed -- people are taking advantage of you and not compensating you fairly (or at all). It's frustrating to put your heart and soul into your business only to have nothing to show for it financially. Now, that's not to say money is the most important thing -- it's not. I can honestly say it's by no means my sole motivating factor. But -- I'm motivated by freedom, and I've realized that a certain level of income brings more freedom into my life.

Let's also keep in mind that the majority of business experts traditionally measure the success of a business by its profitability and if you don't have any revenue, then it's not a business. It's an expensive hobby. Don't just take my word for it -- watch Dragon's Den. I say that tongue-in-cheek, but it's true.

You're exhausted

The overall assumption here is that you're working hard. You're putting in long hours to make your business work and it's tiring. You're giving free session after free session and it's not shifting your bottom line. You've likely taken on a day job to help fund the start-up costs for your business and that's also adding to you feeling burned out. I understand. Because I was there less than 12 months ago. It is tiring but it does get easier as long as you're not making the mistakes I made when I started out.

What were those mistakes and what did I do to rectify them? I'll be sharing those steps my next article in the coming days.