Have you heard that it’s tax season? (Yes, I’ve mentioned it about five times already.) Well, you have less than two months left to finish filing your taxes. I know this time of year, and this activity alone, can be really stressful. So it’s important to get into a positive mindset when you’re preparing to do it. This advice applies to any dreaded financial activity. So let’s get you into your happy place so it feels better to get things done.
Pair It With Something You Love
Do you love a glass of wine or a cup of hot tea? Is chocolate your life saver? Bring those along with you while you do your taxes! This is a great way to start associating something positive with something you don’t like very much.
Give Yourself a Small Reward
One of my clients recently told me that she forced herself to spend an hour working on her budget. I asked her how she got herself to stay focused and get it done and she said, “I wouldn’t let myself have a donut until I was done.” I thought that was such a simple, easy way to encourage herself to do something she usually doesn’t like doing. However, she did say that she can’t necessarily eat a donut every time she deals with her money, so she might have to come up with a different reward eventually. What budget-friendly reward would you give yourself?
Get a Friend to Do It With You
I guarantee you have at least one friend who is dreading doing their taxes as much as you are. Set up a time to work together and provide moral support. It’s kind of like having a gym buddy, but it’s a tax buddy. You might even be more likely to get things done faster so you can hang out and have fun afterwards.
Call Up Your Coach
Do you have a coach or another accountability partner you work with? Schedule a session or check-in with them to get some support and motivation before you get started. I once had a client hire me for a one-time session where I sat with her while she did her taxes. I was able to answer any questions she had and provide guidance along the way. It also took the edge off for her, since doing her taxes was a stressful thing for her.
I find that everything feels more pleasant if I’m in a comfortable spot, in soft, comfortable clothes. I want to be warm and cozy most of the time, but especially when I’m working on something that stresses me out. Where do you feel the most comfortable? What types of clothing makes you feel your best?
Find a Change of Scenery
My friend Torie, from Cherry Blossom Creative, does her taxes at a spa. She carves out a full day to spend at the spa while doing her business taxes. This is a way to bring calm to a complicated, stressful activity. It also gets her out of the office and in a place that forces her to relax. What’s a place that makes you feel most at ease? I love to sit outside in the sun when there’s a nice breeze.
Do you feel more motivated to do your taxes (or balance your budget) now?
How do you get yourself to do the things you dread most? Share in the comments!
Certified Financial Education Instructor. Feminist and financial coach for women. Founder of Money Circle.