People tend to get worked up over taxes and for good reason. Naturally, you want to do things right, report accurately, deduct as much as possible and receive a hefty tax refund. It sounds simple, but taxes are challenging for most people. For many of my clients, tax season triggers perfectionism, compare and despair, guilt, shame and other crippling thought patterns. You can read about an actual diagnosis called Tax Payer Anxiety Disorder. The money coaching process is all about practicing excellent self-care, controlling the things we can and taking preventative measures. Self-care looks different for everyone, so feel free to write your own prescription!

Self-Care

Eat well, rest well and hydrate. Don’t forget that developing routines, walking in fresh air, giving yourself downtime and exploring creativity are healthy ways to relax.

Set yourself up for success. Choose the right place and the right time to work on your taxes. For me, this means arranging childcare and leaving the house on a Saturday to go to a café for an extended business meeting with my husband.

Celebrate. Finishing your taxes is a big deal and I suggest that you celebrate in some way that is aligned with your spending plan and values. After I file this year, I’m planning to attend a luxurious restorative yoga class.

Control The Things You Can

Anticipate paying taxes. If you’re self-employed, be sure to talk with your CPA and calculate how much to set aside for taxes. Set up a separate savings account for taxes only.

Increase your income. Has it been two years since your last raise? Are there any side projects you can manifest that could generate revenue?

Decrease expenses. Identify and stop leaks in spending and think of creative solutions to your needs. There’s nothing more satisfying than canceling unused services. Less is more.

Take Preventative Measures

Maintain a solid system. A little effort on a consistent basis goes a long way. Tracking and organizing your business and personal finances throughout the year will make next year’s tax season easier and more peaceful – take a moment and imagine how that would look and feel.

Get help, if needed. Consider hiring a personal organizer, bookkeeper, money coach or financial consultant to help you clear the money fog and feel happy about your financial life.