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5 Tips For Surviving the Busy Tax Season

By Barbara Beauregard   |    March 25, 2019   |    10:49 AM

The Tax Professional’s Guide to Thriving During Tax Season

Taxes are due on April 15, 2019 (April 17 in Maine and Massachusetts), which means busy season is in full swing for CPAs and other tax professionals. If you want to come out of tax season feeling in control and on top of your workload, incorporate these tips into your life.

1. Embrace outsourcing (professionally)

On the professional side of things, there are ways to make running your tax preparation business a whole lot easier. It all comes down to outsourcing and delegation, because there’s only so much you can do on your own. Virtual office spaces and services are the perfect solution, because you only pay for the things that you need to use. For example, a busy CPA might rent a private office and use a virtual assistant for reception services.

To learn more about how virtual office spaces and services help tax pros during busy season, How Finance & Tax Professionals Use Virtual Office Services During the Busy Tax Season.

2. Embrace outsourcing (personally)

Outsourcing can also be helpful in your personal life, too.

Most major grocery store chains have online ordering and/or delivery services. Meal delivery services like Blue Apron, Plated, Hello Fresh, and Home Chef will ship all of the ingredients you need to make nutritious meals at home, no shopping trip required. Bonus: It’ll be easier to eat healthier when neglecting nutrition is all too tempting.

You can also outsource chores, like cleaning the house and making sure your dog gets enough exercise. It may not be ideal, but you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do to survive busy season.

3. Don’t forget to take frequent breaks

Taking breaks when there’s so much to be done might sound counterintuitive, but hear us out: Researchers have found that, “even brief diversions from a task can dramatically improve one's ability to focus on that task for prolonged periods.”

To get the biggest productivity benefits, your break should be something that actually lets your mind recharge. Try going for a quick walk or talking to a colleague, versus mindlessly browsing social media.

4. Have a plan for when you need to hunker down

Sometimes, working around the clock is the only way to finish everything on your plate. That doesn’t mean you should skip breaks, but you’d be wise to have a plan for maximizing your time.

Think about the things you need to do that take you away from work, like eating… how can you do it as quickly as possible? Ordering in, preparing meals ahead of time, and stocking up on quick and healthy snacks are all ways to streamline meals.

5. Make another plan for the post-tax season wind-down

After months of chaos, transitioning back into a normal routine can be hard, which is why it’s helpful to plan something you can look forward to.

For some tax professionals, that something is a vacation. For others, it might be making time for a favorite hobby or activity. Whatever you do, choose something that makes you feel completely re-energized, because it’ll set you up for success throughout the rest of the year.