Wealth is relative to one’s frame of reference. Some people define affluence as having the money to cover the basics plus more for savings, extras and luxuries. Others will only call themselves well-heeled once they have reached a specific number of figures in their bank account.

But for an enlightened few, wealth is not measured only by how many zeroes you have in your name. While cold cash and material properties can indeed make a difference in your quality of life, possessions are not the only factors for achieving success and happiness.

Here are 7 ways to be wealthy that don’t require money:

1. Invest in your health. No amount of money in the world can buy extra quality years in your life and allow you to enjoy the objects and dollars you have accumulated if you’re too weak or in pain from sickness. So while you can, make health a priority over material riches.

2. Choose family over everything. When you’re lying on your deathbed, will you be thinking about money or fame or career? Most probably, you will simply be savoring the good memories you have with the people who matter most to you and maybe wishing you could add more to your collection. The love you share and the relationships you have built will be your most rewarding possessions in life.

3. Go for meaningful work. Work gives you one of your life’s purposes. How much you earn won’t matter if you hate what you’re doing every single day. So it’s important to choose a career or discipline that allows you to give back to society, and that truly reflects what you find rewarding, fulfilling – and enriching in life.

4. Strive for financial stability. Poverty, they say, is the absence of choices. Money is a tool. If you use it right, it will give you access to a wider array of better choices to improve your life and the lives of others. Earn more than you need for yourself so you can be generous to those who need it.

5. Be at peace with yourself. Peace is priceless — even more so if that peace is with one’s self. If you’re living your life according to your values and you have no serious anxieties and fears that keep you wide awake every night, then that alone is a treasure.

6. Surround yourself with people smarter than you. Who you are is shaped by the people you spend the most time with. Make the decision to get rid of toxic relationships that leave you poor in many ways. Be richer with friends, mentors, students and peers who make the world a better place.

7. Have some fun. Make time for serious work, and time for making your burden and your spirit lighter. Whether that means quiet conversations, cuddling with loved ones, going on adventures or playing a game, give yourself the opportunity to relax and enjoy a mood uplift. Life is richer with laughter and joy.

Remember, money only solves money problems but it won’t bring you true happiness.  Happiness comes from within.  We all need to learn how to live, laugh and love.  That will make us truly wealthy.

Thank you for reading.  Until next time, this is Manuel Gil del Real (MGR)