Tax Insights

Your Guide to State, Local, Federal, Estate + International Taxation

Procrastination and how to avoid it

Procrastination: everyone is guilty of it from time to time, both in the workplace and at home. Whether it’s putting off working on a messy tax return or coming up with excuses to avoid starting that landscaping project, there are always projects to be done that just aren’t much fun.

I don’t know about you, but when I find myself procrastinating on a project, oftentimes what should be a relatively minor task seems to take on a life of its own. I find myself building the project up in my mind with an ever-looming sense of dread when in reality the work I need to tackle is really not all that bad. Like some sort of continuous feedback loop, before you know it a one-hour project seems more like scaling Everest.

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In addition to causing yourself undue stress, procrastinating can actually make an easy project more difficult. Whether its a case of clients becoming unhappy with timeliness of service, or your lawn becoming an overgrown mess due to putting off that landscaping, procrastination has now made these two projects legitimately more difficult to manage.

Rather than allowing procrastination habits to creep in and reach that point, consider some new perspectives to avoid putting things off and instead of tackling projects head-on. One of my favorite ways to get started on a less-than-awesome job is to think about how nice it will be to have it done and out of the way, and the benefits that come with it. Using our same examples, consider how appreciative the client might be that their tax return is done and off of their plate, or how great your house will look once that obnoxious yard work is taken care of. Not to mention avoiding that extra stress that always seems to come with putting off a project until the last minute, or worse, until the project is already late.

While your tax advisor probably can’t help you much with your procrastination habit, or your landscaping for that matter, they can certainly help with those pesky accounting or tax issues that you may have been saving for a rainy day. Whether you have un-filed tax returns, or just need to clean up your bookkeeping, consider reaching out to your friendly CPA for help, and get rid of that looming storm cloud over your head!


Austin Bradley, CPA