Want to bring (more) integrity and success into your life and business? Pay your taxes - with love, devotion, respect, gratitude, and surrender.
Let’s start with the basics: taxes help make the world go round. They pay for roads, schools, social security, medicare, unemployment benefits, national defense, public offices - stuff we all use and need.
Despite this, most people have anxiety, resentment, and resistance around the whole process. Most people procrastinate, hide, avoid, or downright ignore their taxes. In spiritual circles these trends are even worse. We act as if we can meditate our way out of our tax responsibilities.
Do you hope that if you’re spiritual enough, Uncle Sam will turn into Santa and tell you not to pay?
Here are a few statistics from a great article we read that surprised us:
- 72% of Americans qualify for free tax assistance, free tax filing, and free tax counseling. Find out if you’re one of them!
- 66% of taxpayers get a federal refund. That means 2 out of 3 of every person reading this blog will get money back when they file.
- 69% of all taxes are paid by the top quintile of earners. We loved this one in particular since most of our readers are - or would like to be - in the top quintile of earners. These top earners generate most of the GDP and therefore a disproportionate percentage of our national taxes. (At the same time, if you’re one of these top earners, you’re also going to receive 51% of all major tax breaks, too.)
As spiritual people, we have extra resources to handle tax season. Use your spiritual tools to create rituals and cultivate joy around tax season. Set a new standard for yourself: let this year be the year that you refuse to use taxes to take yourself out. No more playing the victim around money. The government is not something to fear and they’re not doing anything to you. We are all in this together. You are here to create abundance (aka more than enough to pay your taxes)! Discipline your thoughts about worry and lack.
Here are your choices:
Quit using taxes to cultivate fear, resentment, or lack. Instead, use tax season to go deep into your practice of consciousness, service, and wealth.
Remember - you are not alone! Read these three personal stories from our team at Jesse Johnson Coaching. These stories will give you inspiration and direction. Create a new annual tradition for yourself!
SPIRITUAL TAX LESSON #1:
Get some freaking help!
A few years back, I started working as an independent contractor. When it came around to tax time, I found myself a little bit terrified. I hadn’t been setting money aside for my taxes and now, the questions... How much would I owe? How complicated would it be to figure out?
I did a thing I sometimes do: procrastinated and convinced myself that it would be fine whenever I got around to it.
But it wasn’t.
When I sat down to do to work the numbers, the amount I stood to owe felt huge, and I felt confused. And ashamed. And stressed out. And no longer attached to doing my own taxes. My husband had suggested that we go to a professional to help us figure it out, but I’d said, “Well, let me give it a shot.”
It’s good that I did, because giving it a shot and winding up in a pit of tears and shame revealed something to me. It wasn’t my relationship with money that needed work. It was my relationship with support, with ease, with self-worth and self-care. It was my relationship with myself.
So I decided to surrender. I asked my husband to find us someone to work on our taxes. I was anxious about it. Opening up all my financial information to a stranger who could judge felt very edgy at the time.
But then I met Roxana - the accountant my husband found for us, who did consulting out of her home. We met together in her warm, cozy dining room and chatted for a while. We talked about her children, our jobs, where we came from. Roxana was from Hungary. She was soft-spoken, soothing, competent, maternal. I felt safe with her. And the experience of doing my taxes with her was a healing one.
She took us through everything step by step. Her discussion of my finances was neutral, gentle, sensitive, detached, reassuring, matter-of-fact, compassionate. It was love - the opposite of what I had expected - and it soaked right into a tender new opening in my heart. It felt so good.
DOING MY TAXES ACTUALLY FELT GOOD.
I still had to pay them, of course, though that didn’t seem so bad anymore. I owed less than I thought. But that wasn’t the important part.
When I stopped resisting and opened up to support, the support that arrived was perfect. With that one meeting, I broke through to the next level of intimacy and love in my relationship with myself.
SPIRITUAL TAX LESSON #2:
Work on it all year long.
(That means right now!)
I have always used an accountant. She does our personal taxes and my business taxes too. What I can tell you is that I drag my feet giving her my business information. It takes away from work time. I'm not fearful of owing money as much as I am fearful of not providing the accountant with everything she needs. I am afraid of forgetting to include something that may be important - whether it's an income or expense. I don't want to create a red flag for the IRS and get audited. I always have that fear because of other people’s experiences that I’ve heard about.
Over the past year I have worked to stay up-to-date with all my business finances so I can hand it off. It's a work in progress that takes continual practice. I used to spread payments for operating expenses over several credit cards. Now I have one designated card for ALL business expenses. It has taken me a year to make the complete shift and it’s now done! Monthly business expenses I track in a spreadsheet.
I'm working ahead now: I set aside the 7th of every month to pay my business expenses bills. I close out all my trip receipts the day after I return home and immediately bill the client.
SPIRITUAL TAX LESSON #3:
Let the IRS be part of your team.
A couple of years ago, I had to refile taxes. It was a massive pain in the butt and I didn’t want to spend time talking to the IRS - who does?
When I finally sat down and made time for it, I spoke with two different people at the IRS. I waited a while to get a human on the phone. When I did they were the nicest people I had ever had a customer service type of experience with. The IRS people I spoke to were funny, generous, and made me feel taken care of. They made the whole process seemed easy - a massive surprise.
IRS agents are saints - who else would choose to get everyone to do something they hate doing? People hate the IRS, and still those folks come to work. Day after day, they have the generosity and humanity to still try to be kind. I can learn a lot from IRS agents, and I honor them for their service. Thanks, humans of the IRS, for keeping the government running! Despite our collective best efforts to sabotage it all!
What would it look like for you to experience tax season as a spiritual time? A time of retreat and growth, receiving and breakthroughs, reflection and insight? What kinds of rituals would you like to create to make this time joyful and sweet?
How would you have to shift your attitudes on the inside?
Who would you choose to include in your process?
What support would you allow into your life?
As spiritual people, our practice is to use EVERYTHING to go deeper - including taxes. May this find you in time to create a transformational tax experience for yourself.