Tax Season: 7 Tips for Maintaining Your Mental Health
The tax season is almost upon us, with the deadline for federal income tax returns on the horizon. This usually means a lot of things. You are going to be working more, doing paperwork and potentially feeling stressed about your financial situation.
There is no doubt that the tax season can heighten your financial worries. These feelings may be further intensified by the COVID-19 pandemic, and you might be experiencing a loss of security and control. The resulting stress, anxiety, and depression can have physical effects on the body such as pain and insomnia, as well as cause mental setbacks. If you have a serious mental illness, the tax season can set you back with your progress.
If you feel like you may be struggling, there are some things you can do to manage your mental health.
Set Small Goals
Do not try to do everything at once. In addition, try not to leave everything to the last minute. The best thing you can do is set small, achievable goals and take each day as it comes. Have tasks ready and start your day set to achieve them. Write out a list of tasks you need to complete every day and slowly work your way through them before April 15 arrives.
Plan Ahead and Do Not Look Back
Dwelling on a mistake or living in the past is not going to help you prepare for the future. It is important to break out of unhealthy cycles of negative thoughts and feelings. Start to think about what you can do to improve your financial situation at this moment. Emotional thinking will not be helpful and it can heighten mental illness if you are struggling during the tax season.
Cut Down on the Coffee
Before a long day begins, a lot of people reach for their cup of coffee for some support. But caffeine is a stimulant that can heighten feelings of anxiety and make you feel jittery. During tax season, it is best to stay hydrated with water or herbal teas. This will give you a lot more energy and you will avoid the caffeine crash.
Take a Break and Reset
Despite the number of tasks you have to do during the tax season, you cannot work 24/7. Instead, you will be more productive if you take regular breaks. This can clear your mind and allow you to reset. So, move away from your desk and go for a walk or enjoy an activity you like to do. This can be beneficial for your mental health.
Reward Your Hard Work
You cannot have all work and no play. While it may be the tax season, you can still enjoy some of your favorite activities. Make time to reward yourself so that you can remain energized. Your health care is essential and you still have to enjoy aspects of your day even if you are busy.
Get 8 Hours of Sleep Each Night
If you have a lot of work to do around this time of year, make sure that you are still enjoying eight hours of sleep every night. It may be tempting to work into the night to gain a couple more hours of working time. However, this can affect your mental health over time. You will feel physically exhausted, as well as experience brain fog and headaches. It can also increase stress and depression caused by money problems.
Talk to Someone
If you are feeling overwhelmed by the things you have to do during tax season, talk to someone. This can be a member of your family or a close friend. Bottling up your feelings can make things worse. Someone close to you can help improve your mood or share information that can help you get through this busy and difficult time in your life. They can also offer you a new perspective on your problems and possible solutions or help.
Alternatively, you can speak to a psychiatrist in MetroWest about your problems. You may not feel comfortable talking to someone close to you right now. Financial worries can be a very personal topic. You might prefer to speak to somebody neutral who can offer you expert support. At Novum Psychiatry, there are treatment programs and therapies for those suffering from anxiety, stress or another mental illness.
If you would like to learn more about scheduling an appointment or requesting a confidential evaluation, please contact us.