Posted by KRS at 10:17 PM
I love the holidays. Over Christmas we see our son who lives across the country more than at any other time during the year. In those days between Christmas and New Year's Day, we also visit with family and entertain friends who we don't see often enough. But as soon as the holidays are a warm memory, the idea of tax preparation rears its head. That memory isn't warm--it's tedious! January is that month of the year when the previous year has to be studied, analyzed, and broken down into manageable bits. Each number has to make sense and match another in a checkbook, on a payment stub or on a charge statement.
I could dread tax preparation. Let's skip over the obvious. We have to pay in money we don't want to pay. (Though I do think of everything our taxes go to pay and try to keep an elevated opinion of those on better days.) During this January excavation into receipts, there are so many other things I'd rather be doing--writing, blogging, tweeting! However, over the years I've come to accept the fact that tax preparation is a chore like raking leaves, cutting the grass, preparing a meal, doing car maintenance. I've found if I approach it with a positive attitude, I can learn from it. I can see patterns and trends in my expenses and spending. If I look hard enough and think the scope of the whole procedure through, I definitely see changes I need to make. Most of all, I can let everything I've learned lead to me choose a course that will take me forward instead of backward.
If I haven't made financial new year's resolutions before gathering all the paperwork, I will after it's compiled.
So tell me. How do you approach doing taxes? Do you consider the experience positive or negative?
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