Your Post-Tax Return Survival Guide

How has your January been? Well you have survived, so that’s something.

As an accountant, it’s easy to be engulfed in the gloomy, oppressive clouds of the tax return season. Apprehension accompanies the run up to the deadline, and with clients running around trying to achieve ‘inner peace’, it doesn’t take long for the first month of the New Year to get that bit too taxing (excuse the pun).

In an attempt to stamp out this bad feeling, it’s important to try and revel in momentary relief and find the silver lining that silhouettes the overwhelming cloud of administration and paperwork. I could talk your ear off all day with this, but I wouldn’t want to give you ‘auditory’ problems. (I sincerely apologise…)

Here are our Top 5 tips for surviving life after the dog days of tax returns:

  • Take a Holiday

It’s an unknown, immeasurable statistic how many times on average, in one year, an individual despairs that they NEED a holiday.

January’s obviously no good, even if you wanted to flee from the tax return deadline, Christmas stole all the money. Don’t even think about the half terms, who’d pay more for a holiday where there’re more kids than there are grains of sand?

But just after the dedication, commitment and hard work you’ve demonstrated in the period of tax returns? Ideal. It’s also more than likely the period of time you can afford it the most.

  • Find your inner Peace?

There are few feelings in life that are on par with losing keys. The sheer, frantic panic that this misplacement provokes can be worrying. Losing keys moments before you absolutely have to leave the house could reduce even the most together individual to the embodiment of pessimism. But the wave of relief when they’re located again potentially ranks ‘up-there’ with a few of life’s best feelings.

In the same respect, HMRC’s campaign aimed to promote the imminent inner peace that people would feel once they have filed their returns. But it’s undeniable that practitioners will also gasp a sigh of relief once the dreaded tax period comes to an end. And though you may not levitate as the irritating Revenue campaign may have you believe, that weight on your shoulders definitely will.

  • Think of the Money

It’s glaringly obvious that the more work someone does, the more money they should get, and this is undoubtedly news that will illuminate the otherwise muggy atmosphere that circulates tax season.

Accountants are annually inundated with a flurry of tax returns, but looking beyond your begrudging moans, remember that there will more than likely be extra income to be made from those clients submitting their returns late, and also any new custom that may be enticed during the first month of the year.

In addition, you’re extremely unlikely to have any time to spend money during this period, which might just be a welcome feeling since Santa had no doubt just clawed his way through your wallet.

  • Network!

Much like a bartender may secretly have a favourite punter; accountants will imminently meet some business characters during their time practicing. And January accommodates the most likely time to run into them all at once.

It could be a great opportunity to catch up with a client who you only see when this unfortunate time of year dawns, but as well as this, it could be taken advantage of to broadcast new services.

In turn, these pleasantries can easily be converted to new business. Also, if tax returns are dealt with efficiently and relatively quickly, a prevailing window could be left to attend networking events to really kick start the new business year.

Less motivated practitioners may be less inclined to hurry their returns at the chance of attending networks, which can only mean good things for those who can be bothered, as this equals less competition and more serious prospects than would usually populate these events later in the year.

  • Take Time Off

The January tax return season is probably comparable to running ten marathons whilst listening to War and Peace on your iPod. Basically, for accountants, January is an ordeal. You are only human after all, so take some time off. (This is probably the most important point on this list) I’m not asking you to neglect your clients, I’m just suggesting that no matter how you want to do it, you should take some ‘me’ time, and rejuvenate before you begin the 10 month build up to next January’s month of fun.

By:Sam Greenwell

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