Our Fitness Blog
Keep Calm and File Your Taxes
Tax day is upon us, and we as Americans are collectively freaking out. According to the American Psychological Association’s annual Stress in America report, Americans stress about money more than anything else. This has been the case since the survey began in 2007, and we aren’t getting any better at managing our stress, it seems. Over half of U.S. adults (56 percent) say the tax-filing process is stressful and 18 percent consider it “very stressful.”
People who are very stressed about money (or otherwise) are more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors, like smoking, drinking, and binge watching TV to cope. Additionally, stress can cause a myriad of problems, including depression, sleeplessness/poor quality of sleep, relationship problems and higher instances of heart attacks, migraines, ulcers and back pain.
So with tax day nearly here, what can you do to better cope with the tax-time stress pandemic? Here are four tips to help you survive (and maybe even thrive) on tax day, and beyond:
1) Adjust your perspective
Approximately 44 percent of those living in lower-income households who say they have extreme stress about money rate their health as fair or poor. Because your chance of feeling daily stress is the same if you make $40K per year versus $160K per year, realize that more money does not make you less stressed - but your attitude about money can. More money won’t solve all of your problems, but changing the way you think about money certainly helps.
2) Sweat out your stress
When stress affects the brain, the rest of the body feels the impact as well. Exercise is considered vital for maintaining mental fitness, and it can reduce stress. Scientists have found that regular participation in exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem.
For example: In one 30-minute 9Round workout, your body not only produces mood-boosting endorphins, but you are so focused on completing each segment of the workout that you leave everything else behind. Each uppercut, round kick, and burpee gives you an outlet for your stress and anxiety. Additionally, you have the support of a certified 9Round trainer to motivate and encourage you every step of the way, which can be especially helpful when stress has depleted your energy or ability to concentrate.
3) Focus on what you can control and set small and achievable goals
We see it all the time in the fitness world – people setting giant goals and having no idea where to even start to reach them. And we’ll tell you exactly what we tell them: focus on short-term, small, and achievable goals first. Don’t just say you want to lose 40 pounds, or you want to save $4,000 this year. Set a smaller goal in a shorter time frame that seems less intimidating to achieve. For example: you want to work out 12 times this month, or you want to save $15 from each paycheck. When you set goals that you feel you have control over it will help you feel confident in meeting them.
4) Reward yourself
You can’t be thrifty all the time. After saving all week by having dinner at home, treat yourself to a weekend dinner out with friends. When you do choose to spend discretionary income make it count by focusing on activities that you not only enjoy, but that are good for your overall well-being. Joining a fitness facility like 9Round not only improves your physical health, but also your mental wellness. Meet a friend for a workout, then go enjoy a coffee or smoothie afterward. The benefits reach far beyond just looking and feeling better – and you deserve it!