You’re tax professionals. You don’t need me to tell you that the money you are going to win in the virtual office pool on “the big game” is taxable income. You also don’t need me to tell you can’t net your winnings with the cost of the wager. You don’t, right? Most of the rules for reporting gambling income and deducting gambling losses for individuals are well understood with the possible exception of the session rules for slot machine play. I’m not going there—well, not in this article. This article is going to explore the nuances of tax optimization for people who have decided to go all in and turn their leisure time activities into a job.
The Tax Professional Self-Care 10 Commandments
Every Spring there is some point in the tax season that I have to remind myself why I chose to become a tax professional. I am often comforted to find out that I am not the only person questioning my career decision. Tax pros nationwide share on social media that they are thinking the same thing. So let me ask you.
Why did you choose to do this to yourself again?
You promised yourself to fire problem clients and improve systems. Yet we’re here in March, how did you do with keeping your promise to yourself?
My first busy season Thomas Reuters released a video that I found funny, at one of their tax conferences. There are children that talk about why they want to be a tax accountant. A few reasons they give are:
• To work 22-hour days;
• To work with numbers that are changing all the time;
• Having lots of turnover with burned out employees.
My personal favorite is to have 3 people do the work of 8.
In hindsight it almost sounds like they were describing the tax industry during 2020 and 2021. When I first watched the video, it was hilarious. But 12 years later I still smirk, but for different reasons. I can totally relate to the sarcasm. Nobody goes into this industry for those reasons yet here we are each Spring on the verge of burnout.
Did you think of your why? I want you to write it really big and post it somewhere that you will see it every day when you are working at your desk.
I want to share with you 10 things that you can implement to protect you and your why. I like to call them the Tax Professional Self-care 10 Commandments.