Reducing Stress During Tax Time

 

Tax time can be one of the most stressful times of year. A 2014 survey sponsored by the American Psychological Association found that nearly three-quarters of Americans cited money as a significant source of stress. Money is also consistently among the top causes of marital contention, says Olivia Mellan, a psychotherapist and financial self-help author based in Washington, D.C. (Web MD)

 

McCall suggests channeling tax-time stress into a resolution to track your finances more carefully. Better money management is the best way to avoid unpleasant surprises each year, she says. If the pressure is too much consider filing an extension or consulting a professional CPA.

Luckily, in the greater Asheville area there are plenty of great ways to destress: spas, and enjoying the great outdoors, Here are a few tips to manage stress.

Meditate

Daily meditation can help clear negative thoughts.

Breathe Deeply

Take a five minute break to focus on your breath.  Deep breathing can slow your heart rate and lower your blood pressure.

Reach Out

Your social network is one of your best tools for handling stress. Talk to others -- preferably face to face, or at least on the phone. Share what's going on. You can get a fresh perspective while keeping your connection strong.

Laugh Out Loud

A good belly laugh doesn’t just lighten the load mentally. It lowers cortisol, your body’s stress hormone, and boosts brain chemicals called endorphins, which help your mood. Lighten up by tuning in to your favorite sitcom or video, reading the comics, or chatting with someone who makes you smile.

Crank Up the Tunes and Dance

Research shows that listening to soothing music can lower blood pressure, heart rate, and anxiety. “Create a playlist of songs or nature sounds (the ocean, a bubbling brook, birds chirping), and allow your mind to focus on the different melodies, instruments, or singers in the piece,” Benninger says. You also can blow off steam by rocking out to more upbeat tunes -- or singing at the top of your lungs! Moving your body will help you shake it off.

At GMG is here to help.