deadlines http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/17612/all en-US 6 Ways to Deal When You're Way Behind at Work http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_stressed_work_488912550.jpg" alt="Woman finding ways to deal when she&#039;s behind at work" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being overwhelmed and falling behind at work may be a universal phenomenon, but it is possible to get back to a solid footing. If you are drowning in incomplete TPS reports, here are six ways you can improve the situation and get your head back above water.</p> <h2>1. Take 20 Minutes Every Morning to Review and Plan</h2> <p>Truly productive people start their mornings by taking 20 minutes to review their calendars and create their to-do lists for the day. This allows them to be prepared for whatever the day ahead has to offer.</p> <p>This is the sort of habit that often goes out the window as soon as a major work deadline looms large. When you are overwhelmed at work, it can be tempting to jump right in as soon as you get to the office. There are fires to put out and meetings to attend, so you don't have the time to plan out your day.</p> <p>But skipping the 20-minute morning review means you are surprised by plans, meetings, or interim due dates that slip your mind while you're focused on the big project. Make sure your morning starts with a plan so that you can prevent today's small deadline from becoming a major problem tomorrow.</p> <h2>2. Say No to More Work</h2> <p>When it comes to optional work projects, the way to say no is simple, but not easy. It's a matter of getting in the habit of saying &quot;My plate is full right now.&quot;</p> <p>However, the harder issue is when your boss is trying to assign you more work on top of what you are already doing. Pushing back against such an assignment is not simple, and it can feel very uncomfortable.</p> <p>The best way to handle such an addition to your workload is to ask for and provide open communication. Set a meeting with your boss to agree on what your priorities, goals, and objectives are for all of your projects, so it's clear what can and cannot reasonably get done. Request regular progress review meetings so everyone will be clear on what is happening and when. It's important for you and your supervisor to recognize your abilities and limitations and not try to squeeze blood from a turnip.</p> <h2>3. End the Procrastination Cycle</h2> <p>Scientists have found that procrastination has less to do with time than emotion. Chronic procrastinators are often choosing not to start their work because it gives them momentary emotional relief &mdash; but the level of guilt they feel over procrastinating means they are not really improving their emotional state by avoiding the dreaded task.</p> <p>Even the best of us fall victim to procrastination, but chronic procrastinators can find themselves spiraling into an endless procrastination cycle: Putting off a dreaded task makes them feel guilty and ashamed, which causes them to have less cognitive and emotional energy available to be productive, which makes them even less likely to start the task.</p> <p>So how do you end the procrastination cycle?</p> <p>There are two proven methods for interrupting this loop. The first is an <a href="http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/1467-9280.00441" target="_blank">external deadline</a>. Knowing that you are beholden to another individual is often enough to force you to just get started in order to meet the deadline. If you can't ask your supervisor for hard deadlines, creating self-imposed deadlines is not as effective, but still better than nothing.</p> <p>The second method of interrupting the procrastination loop is to regard your mood as a fixed state. According to a 2001 study by Dianne Tice, students didn't procrastinate when they were primed to believe <a href="https://www.psychologicalscience.org/observer/why-wait-the-science-behind-procrastination#.WH-4qRsrJPY" target="_blank">their mood was fixed</a> &mdash; but when they thought their mood could change (especially if they thought it could improve), they procrastinated. It can be tough to start your work if you are in a bad mood, but if you just accept that your bad mood is here to stay, you're more likely to roll up your sleeves and get to it.</p> <h2>4. Procrastinate Productively</h2> <p>If you truly feel like you emotionally need to avoid a task that you should be working on, there are far better ways to dodge it than by surfing Facebook. Instead, you should work on another task that may not be as time-sensitive, but still needs to get done.</p> <p>This used to be my favorite way to get homework done in college. When I had a major project due, the days leading up to the due date would often find me working on homework for other classes. This allowed me to feel the emotional relief of procrastination without allowing me to fall into the shame associated with a procrastination cycle.</p> <p>You can also take this habit one step further by creating a <a href="http://ayearofproductivity.com/procrastinate-more-productively/" target="_blank">procrastination list</a>. This idea comes from Chris Bailey, the blogger behind A Year of Productivity. Your procrastination list will include any items you're allowed to work on when you find yourself procrastinating. This will help you to still use your time productively if you procrastinate. Alternatively, if you find that nothing on your procrastination list is appealing, then you are more likely to just get started on the task you'd otherwise avoid.</p> <h2>5. Nip Complaining in the Bud</h2> <p>When you are overwhelmed, it can feel great to complain about your heavy workload to your coworkers, friends, family, and glassy-eyed cashiers who really don't care about your TPS reports. But complaining only offers you momentary relief. If you keep talking about how rough it is, you're likely to make yourself feel even worse about the situation.</p> <p>So if you are tempted to complain about your bozo boss and his unrelenting workload, stop yourself and think about what could be a more constructive use of your conversations. Perhaps you could ask a coworker to help you with a task, or request that your spouse take over school drop-off for the week so you can get to work a few minutes earlier to plan your day. Use your conversations as an opportunity to reduce your sense of being overwhelmed, rather than magnify it by complaining.</p> <h2>6. Get Some Rest</h2> <p>Sleep seems like an easy place to cut back when there are more tasks than hours in the day. But staying up late to finish a project isn't just bad for your health, it's actually counterproductive if you want to get your work done. Not only does lack of sleep make you <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21075236" target="_blank">more easily distracted</a>, which means it will take you longer to get your work done, but fatigue can also hurt your job performance.</p> <p>One of the best things you can do to chip away at your seemingly endless to-do list is protect your sleep time. Don't let work encroach on your rest, or you'll find that both your rest and your work are worse off.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-career-tips-your-younger-self-would-give-you">9 Career Tips Your Younger Self Would Give You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-panic-how-to-meet-a-deadline">Don&#039;t Panic! How to Meet a Deadline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-have-energy-after-work">7 Easy Ways to Have Energy After Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-important-signs-that-your-job-sucks">10 Important Signs That Your Job Sucks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Productivity behind schedule boredom deadlines falling behind planning procrastinating sleep to-do lists work Fri, 27 Jan 2017 11:00:09 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1881551 at http://www.wisebread.com My 2016 Budget Challenge: Where to Find Cheap Training for a New Career http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-where-to-find-cheap-training-for-a-new-career <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/my-2016-budget-challenge-where-to-find-cheap-training-for-a-new-career" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_computer_stress_84635733.jpg" alt="Woman finding cheap training for a new career" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>[Editor's Note: This is another episode in Max Wong's journey to find an extra $31,000 this year. Read the whole series </em><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/max-wongs-budget-0" target="_blank"><em>here</em></a><em>.]</em></p> <p>Yesterday, one of my friends asked: &quot;So, what are you working on?&quot; To which I responded: &quot;Um, you know, stuff. All sorts of things. I'm so busy. Uhhhhh, It's kind of boring to explain.&quot;</p> <p>For the past four weeks I've been grinding away at an increasingly long To Do list. It's always been like this. Or, to be accurate, I've always been like this. I always complete the majority of my projects during the last four months of the year. Perhaps it's because 24 years after graduation, I still feel like September is the start of a new year. Or perhaps it's the change of seasons&hellip; even though Los Angeles only has two seasons: vacation weather and unreasonably hot.</p> <p>Or, perhaps I accidentally schedule all my deadlines for every project for December 31st. Regardless of the motivation, my completion panic kicked into high gear one month early this year.</p> <p>I suspect it's the public shaming aspect of this writing exercise that has accelerated my inner clock. After all, it's September and I am still over $21,000 short of meeting my goal of saving $31,000 before the end of the year. If I want to make this goal, I will need to make or save an additional $5,280 <em>per month</em>. Uhn.</p> <p>To that end, I have been working every moneymaking angle available to me from the confines of my house. I am canning my award-winning fig jam in advance of Holiday Craft Fairs, I have applied to every job lead that has come my way (including one that would require me to wear an abaya everyday for a month &mdash; but since I look weirdly cute in a headscarf, this is actually not a bad thing), and I am selling everything I don't completely love on Craigslist and eBay.</p> <p>At the end of June, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-does-taking-a-regular-day-job-mean-giving-up" target="_blank">I got a really good job lead</a> from my sister. If I can become an expert at Adobe Illustrator and pass her company's skill test, she can hire me for a freelance job that would easily make up my budget shortfall.</p> <h2>Access Free Job Skill Training Via the Library</h2> <p>Once I learned about the job opportunity, I jumped into action. I subscribed to Adobe Illustrator ($30 per month) believing that I would be illustrating everything by the end of the 30-day free trial period. &quot;I totally got this,&quot; I told myself. &quot;I'm going to spend the 4th of July watching 32 hours of Lynda.com tutorials that I can download for free using my Los Angeles Public Library card. Then I will give myself three weeks to cram for the skill test. My education cost will be zero and I can work full time starting in August.&quot;</p> <h2>Cramming Doesn't Work</h2> <p>I started watching the Lynda.com tutorials that same night. Two hours in I began to lose focus to the point that I had to stop and rewind the video several times because I kept spacing out. &quot;Ugh. What is wrong with me? Why am I struggling so hard to learn this?&quot; I asked my best friend. &quot;Well,&quot; she answered, &quot;there's a reason why most college classes are only two hours long. Your brain is actively learning, not binge watching Daredevil, you dummy.&quot;</p> <p>Oh.</p> <p>Now resigned to the fact that I cannot master Adobe Illustrator in one marathon study session, I've had to alter my schedule for total budget domination considerably. Not without a huge amount of denial, I have discovered that my brain can only absorb an hour of technical lecturing per day. So it was 32 days of watching tutorials, not three. I've also had to admit to myself that it's going to take a minimum of 100 hours of practice with the Pen Tool before I have any proficiency. So basically, my free self-education and accelerated learning plan now looks and costs the same as a semester-long class at my local community college, but without teacher office hours so I can actually get one-on-one assistance.</p> <p>What is possibly worse than acknowledging that I am not the quick study I thought I was? The realization that I am now losing paid work hours to unpaid study hours. In order not to backslide into more debt, I will have to get a better-paying job to supplement my job training for a better-paying job.</p> <p>Sigh. Lesson learned?</p> <h2>Progress So Far</h2> <p>My blood tests are fine. My teeth are fine. My boobs are fine. My OCD is&hellip;what it is. My savings this month? Not so much. My regularly scheduled doctors' appointments erased any savings from Mr. Spendypants this pay period as I'm on his health insurance. (Thanks Cutie).</p> <p>Between my new study schedule and my doctor appointments, I only managed to turn in $90 worth in writing work this pay period. Luckily, my bees came through for me and helped me sell $150 in bees and $293.76 in honey. Because I've been under house arrest, and Mr. Spendypants has been working 16 hours a day, we still managed to come out $533.76 ahead, even with all the medical expenses.</p> <p><strong>Goal:</strong> $31,000</p> <p><strong>Amount Raised:</strong> $22,040.17</p> <p><strong>Amount Spent:</strong> $12,153.66</p> <p><strong>Amount Left to Go:</strong> $21,113.49</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-where-to-find-cheap-training-for-a-new-career">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-does-taking-a-regular-day-job-mean-giving-up">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Does Taking a Regular Day Job Mean Giving Up?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-job-creation">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Job Creation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-everything-breaks">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Everything Breaks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/self-sufficiency-self-reliance-and-freedom">Self-sufficiency, self-reliance, and freedom</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-how-to-buy-a-house-when-you-live-paycheck-to-paycheck">My 2016 Budget Challenge: How to Buy a House When You Live Paycheck to Paycheck</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Career and Income budget challenge career skills deadlines debt job hunting job skills learning max wongs budget motivation Fri, 09 Sep 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Max Wong 1788919 at http://www.wisebread.com Filed an Extension? Here's What You Need to Know http://www.wisebread.com/filed-an-extension-heres-what-you-need-to-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/filed-an-extension-heres-what-you-need-to-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_filing_taxes_000044029242.jpg" alt="Woman filing tax extension and finding out what she needs " title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When the taxman cometh, it's already too late.</p> <p>Ignoring your federal taxes is never a good idea. Even though the IRS is suffering from budget cuts, the agency will still diligently calculate all applicable fees and penalties delinquent taxpayers owe.</p> <p>Struggling taxpayers may feel that they have no options available. The reality is that the IRS offers several options for people needing a filing extension or having difficulties meeting their tax obligations. Here are six steps that you can take to lessen the tax blow.</p> <h2>1. Double Check for Automatic Filing Extensions</h2> <p>Not all late tax filers fail to meet the deadline on purpose. Some of us have legitimate reasons, such as military deployment, that render us unable to pay our taxes on time. The IRS grants an automatic filing extension to the following groups:</p> <ul> <li>U.S. citizens and green card holders abroad. When living and working abroad, you have until June 16th to file your federal taxes. However, payment of taxes is still due April 15th.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Members of the armed forces serving in <a href="http://www.irs.gov/uac/Combat-Zones">combat zones</a>. As an active member of the U.S. Armed Forces, you can wait until at least 180 days after you leave the combat zone to file returns and pay any taxes due. For more details, refer to the Extensions of Deadlines in Publication 3, <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p3.pdf">Armed Forces' Tax Guide</a>.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Victims of certain recent natural disasters<strong>.</strong> Check this list from the IRS for approved <a href="http://www.irs.gov/uac/Tax-Relief-in-Disaster-Situations">tax relief for disaster situations</a>, such as the March 2014 mudslide in Washington and Hurricane Sandy.</li> </ul> <h2>2. File an Extension</h2> <p>If you aren't part of any of the three groups who enjoy automatic filing extensions, you can use the <a href="http://www.irs.gov/uac/Free-File:-Do-Your-Federal-Taxes-for-Free">Free File service</a> from the IRS to electronically request an automatic tax-filing extension on <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f4868.pdf">Form 4868</a>. This extends your filing extension to October 15th.</p> <p>Don't underestimate the late filing penalty. It's 5% of the amount due for each month (or part of a month) your return is late. The maximum penalty is 25%. For returns 60 days late, the minimum penalty is $135 or the balance of the tax due on your return, whichever is smaller.</p> <p>If you feel that you have a valid reason for filing late, attach a statement to your return. In some cases, the IRS may waive the late filing fee.</p> <h2>3. Minimize Late Payment Fees</h2> <p>While you get an extension for filing taxes, your deadline to pay due taxes is still April 15th.</p> <p>The good news is that by filing an extension before or on April 15th, now you only pay a monthly penalty of half of 1% of any tax not paid by April 15th, instead of the default 5%.</p> <p>You don't have to pay late penalty fees if you can prove reasonable cause for paying taxes late. According to the IRS, if you pay at least 90% of your actual 2014 tax liability by April 15th, then you have reasonable cause and won't be charged late penalty fees. Paycheck withholdings, estimated tax payments, and payments made with Form 4868 count towards that 90%.</p> <p>Now that you have minimized late filing and late payment fees, let's tackle that debt to Uncle Sam.</p> <h2>4. Set Up an Online Payment Agreement</h2> <p>If you owe $50,000 or less in combined individual income tax, penalties, and interest, have filed all required returns, and can pay the full debt within 120 days, you're eligible to apply for an <a href="http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Online-Payment-Agreement-Application">online payment agreement</a> with the IRS.</p> <p>To apply you'll need:</p> <ul> <li>Your name</li> <li>Valid email address</li> <li>Address from most recently processed tax return</li> <li>Date of birth</li> <li>Filing status</li> <li>Your SSN (or spouse's if filed jointly) or ITIN</li> </ul> <p>The IRS charges no fee to file this short extension of time to pay. Generally, taxpayers that are granted the 120-day extension pay less in penalties and interest that those that request longer payment agreements.</p> <h2>5. Request an Installment Agreement</h2> <p>Depending on how much you owe to the IRS, you may not be able to pay your debt within 120 days. In that case, you need to request an installment agreement through <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f9465.pdf">Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request</a> and <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f433f.pdf">Form 433-F, Collection Information Statement</a>.</p> <p>Here are some important points to consider about installment agreements:</p> <ul> <li>The standard fee to set up an installment agreement is $120; $52 if you agree to automatic payment withdrawal from your bank account, or $43 if your income is below a certain level.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>To avoid default, pay your minimum monthly payment by its due date.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If your agreement goes into default, you may be charged a reinstatement free.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Include your name, mailing address, Social Security number, daytime phone number, and return type on each one of your payments.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Your entire balance is due within 72 months.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Any future refunds will be automatically applied towards your balance until you pay your debt.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Even if you have future refunds, continue to make your scheduled payments.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If you move and have an unpaid balance, notify the IRS with <a href="http://www.irs.gov/file_source/pub/irs-pdf/f8822.pdf">Form 8822, Change of Address</a> to avoid missing any bills or notices from the IRS.</li> </ul> <p>Keep in touch with the IRS. Contact the agency at 1-800-829-1040 if you have any questions about any bill or notice, or if you know that you won't be able to meet a minimum monthly payment.</p> <h2>6. Last Resort: Payment Extension or Offer in Compromise</h2> <p>When you feel that you're running out of options, you still have two final courses of action.</p> <p>First, in the event that you feel that you have an undue hardship, meaning you would sustain a substantial financial loss if forced to pay a tax or deficiency on the due date, you can submit <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1127.pdf">Form 1127, Application for Extension of Time for Payment of Tax Due to Undue Hardship</a>.</p> <p>Under the <a href="http://www.irs.gov/uac/New-IRS-Fresh-Start-Initiative-Helps-Taxpayers-Who-Owe-Taxes">IRS Fresh Start Initiative</a>, qualifying individuals can request an extension of time to pay and have late payment penalties removed. The IRS generally limits payment extensions to six months, except under very special circumstances.</p> <p>Second, in the very worst case scenario that you can't commit to an installment agreement and that you feel that a time extension wouldn't be helpful, you can submit <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f656b.pdf">Form 656, Offer in Compromise</a>.</p> <p>Under this scenario, the IRS would settle your tax debt in a lump sum totaling less than you owe. To help determine your eligibility, use the IRS's <a href="http://irs.treasury.gov/oic_pre_qualifier/">Offer in Compromise Pre-Qualifier</a>. Keep in mind that the IRS requires all Form 656 applicants a non-refundable $186 application fee and an upfront, non-refundable partial payment.</p> <p>Form 656 should be your very, very last resort because the IRS approves few offers in compromise.</p> <h2>Act Now</h2> <p>Take your tax obligations seriously. If you cannot make a payment, contact the IRS immediately. Unless you notify the IRS about why you can't meet a payment, the organization is legally allowed some pretty nasty enforced collection actions, such as seizing your property until you pay your tax debt.</p> <p>There is no tax beast that can't be tamed.</p> <p><em>How did you deal with your biggest tax bill?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/filed-an-extension-heres-what-you-need-to-know">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-places-to-get-free-tax-advice">6 Great Places to Get Free Tax Advice</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-get-audited-how-your-side-gig-needs-to-handle-taxes">Don&#039;t Get Audited! How Your Side Gig Needs to Handle Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-your-tax-preparer-makes-a-mistake">What to Do When Your Tax Preparer Makes a Mistake</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/35-bizarre-things-you-can-be-taxed-on">35 Bizarre Things You Can Be Taxed On</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-three-tax-facts-to-know-for-2016">Top Three Tax Facts to Know for 2016</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Taxes agreements automatic filing deadlines IRS late taxes tax extension Thu, 16 Apr 2015 21:00:28 +0000 Damian Davila 1388387 at http://www.wisebread.com Want to Have Fun? Give Yourself a Deadline http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-have-fun-give-yourself-a-deadline <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/want-to-have-fun-give-yourself-a-deadline" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/camping-4642830-small.jpg" alt="friends hiking" title="friends hiking" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;Deadline&quot; is a word that has many associations, and most of those are negative. Most people associate deadlines with work, a late night scramble to finish a term paper, or a task that is so awful there's no way you'd do it if you didn't have to.</p> <p>With all of this negativity, why would you ever give yourself a deadline for something fun?</p> <p>Because actually, deadlines are great motivators. In fact, experts say that if you really want to get something done and <a href="http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-science-success/201308/heres-what-really-happens-when-you-extend-deadline">not put it off again and again</a>, a deadline is a great way to achieve success. When you look at it that way, why not make deadlines for all of those fun things you've been meaning to do? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-stick-to-personal-deadlines">Meeting Personal Deadlines</a>)</p> <h2>Make Yourself Choose a Goal</h2> <p>A key step towards achieving any goal is having a goal in the first place. That might sound simple, but think about how often you change goals, especially when it comes to fun things. After all, the trip to Europe sounds good when you're hearing about one your friends just returned from, but learning to whitewater kayak seems like it would be a blast when you're watching it on TV, too. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/goal-setting-defined-and-deconstructed">Goal Setting Defined and Deconstructed</a>)</p> <p>Giving yourself a deadline involves choosing a goal, because otherwise you don't have anything to set a deadline for. Setting a deadline makes us <a href="http://danariely.com/ask-ariely/">clarify what we are really thinking</a> about and forces us to come up with an action plan for achieving that one (and ONLY that one) goal.</p> <p>Setting a goal can be terrifying and exhilarating, all at once. All of this emotion makes it hard for some people to settle on a goal, though. Fortunately, there are many good questions you can ask yourself that will help you <a href="http://zenhabits.net/a-simple-guide-to-setting-and-achieving-your-life-goals/">narrow down your goals</a> and pick the ones that are the most meaningful to you.</p> <h2>Put Yourself on the Line</h2> <p>Creating a deadline and telling people about it means that <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/21/jobs/deadline-pressure-the-great-motivator.html?_r=0">your character and reputation are on the line</a> if you don't achieve your goals. If you tell everyone on Facebook that you are headed to Europe in the fall, people are bound to ask what happened if you never mention it again.</p> <p>You can even use social media to track your progress, by announcing when you've reached different steps towards your goal. Announce the percentage of money you've saved out of the total necessary to make your goal happen, or post updates as you do important things like booking hotels, getting plane tickets, etc.</p> <p>If you're a diehard procrastinator, putting your reputation on the line may not be enough. You may need to do something drastic, like giving a friend a prized possession and telling him or her to keep it if you don't achieve your goal on time.</p> <h2>Make Sure You Have Time for Fun</h2> <p>In our world of overwork and busy-ness, it's all too easy to let play time vanish by the wayside. We think that fun is something we can put off, simply because it doesn't always fit into our schedules. However, <a href="http://health.lsj.com/TextItem.aspx?id=1149">fun is good for us</a>. It helps us maintain our balance as human beings, and it provides space for our minds to think creatively. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-get-motivated-today">25 Ways to Get Motivated Today</a>)</p> <p>If fun isn't happening, we need to put it in our schedules and give ourselves deadlines to make sure that we're playing along with our work. We want to be healthy, and fun helps us do that. Anything, then, that makes sure we include fun in our lives, is worth the effort of doing.</p> <p>Even if you can't stomach setting a deadline for fun things, try setting deadlines for almost everything else in your life. When you have deadlines that you are achieving and you know when your next deadlines are and that you are working towards them, then <a href="http://themileshighlife.com/2011/why-deadlines-will-help-you-work-harder-play-harder-and-be-true-to-yourself/">you know exactly when and where you can play</a>. Deadlines allow you to relax because you aren't always running from thing to thing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/time-management-tools-too-busy-to-read-this-post">Too Busy to Read This Post?</a>)</p> <p>Whether deadlines are something you're comfortable with or not, there's no denying the fact that they will help you get done the things that you most want to get done. It's counterintuitive to apply deadlines to fun, but the truth is that they can help you get what you want out of life in that category, too. Even if you feel tentative, try it! After all, the worst that could happen is that it doesn't work for you.</p> <p><em>Have you ever set yourself a deadline for fun? Tell us about it in the comments.</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwant-to-have-fun-give-yourself-a-deadline&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWant%2520to%2520Have%2520Fun-%2520Give%2520Yourself%2520a%2520Deadline.jpg&amp;description=Want%20to%20Have%20Fun%3F%20Give%20Yourself%20a%20Deadline"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Want%20to%20Have%20Fun-%20Give%20Yourself%20a%20Deadline.jpg" alt="Want to Have Fun? Give Yourself a Deadline" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-have-fun-give-yourself-a-deadline">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-fortune-become-your-own-hero">How to Make Your Fortune: Become Your Own Hero</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work">6 Ways to Deal When You&#039;re Way Behind at Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-can-too-7-amazing-things-people-have-accomplished-in-under-a-year">You Can Too: 7 Amazing Things People Have Accomplished in Under a Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-panic-how-to-meet-a-deadline">Don&#039;t Panic! How to Meet a Deadline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-increase-your-willpower-and-be-more-successful">10 Ways to Increase Your Willpower and Be More Successful</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development deadlines fun goals planning Tue, 17 Sep 2013 10:00:03 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 981864 at http://www.wisebread.com Don't Panic! How to Meet a Deadline http://www.wisebread.com/dont-panic-how-to-meet-a-deadline <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/dont-panic-how-to-meet-a-deadline" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/clock-5162747-small_0.jpg" alt="clock" title="clock" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I'm going to make this quick, because this article is due in 15 minutes. Just kidding&nbsp;&mdash; I've got some time. I decided not to leave this work to the last minute. It just leads to a lot of unnecessary sweating, compulsive hair pulling and, in the most serious cases, tears. Plus, it would be kinda hypocritical considering the advice I'm about to give. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-save-time-by-spending-it" target="_blank">10 Ways to Save Time by Spending Time</a>)</p> <p>Have a tight deadline to meet? Here are some tips on getting the job done.</p> <h2>1. Start Right Now</h2> <p>Seriously. Get to work. I get your desire to procrastinate. I'm all about procrastinating, too. Fortunately, I've done enough of it to know that it just isn't worth it. All that time you aren't working toward meeting your deadline is really just wasted life. You know, the kind where you're trying to be carefree and fun-loving, but really you're just all twisted up inside thinking about how much work you have to do. So ditch your friends, turn off the TV, and dig in. The worst that can happen is that you finish early.</p> <h2>2. Make a Plan</h2> <p>When I'm stressed about a project, my mind tends to spin in ever-tightening circles until my inner dialog sounds like a song by <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RP19fnff_c" target="_blank">The Chipettes</a>. It's about that pointless and repetitive, too. So, when I have something major to tackle and little time to do it, the first thing I do is sit down and make a list of each major component I need to complete. Then I systematically work my way down the list until I'm done. Call it a battle plan. Actually, call it whatever you want. Just do it. It works.</p> <h2>3. Budget Your Time</h2> <p>Teachers always say things like &quot;budget your time effectively.&quot; The problem is that as a kid, I had absolutely no idea what that meant, except that based on the way the teacher was looking at me (down her nose), I was totally failing at it.</p> <p>It actually took me a long time to figure it out, but what time management really means is looking at your battle plan, looking at how much time you have to accomplish your task, and settling on a rough time estimate for completing each part of your plan. When you have a really tight deadline, that can mean letting go of some perfectionism and accepting that you'll have to move on if you want to get the job done. It's just like budgeting your money. The key is to accept right up front that you may not be able to have it all.</p> <h2>4. Find a Place Where You Can Focus</h2> <p>When you need to work quickly and effectively, the last thing you need are distractions. So, when a deadline's looming, find that magic workspace that'll <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shhhhh-how-to-block-out-noise" target="_blank">give you razor-sharp focus</a>. That means different things to different people. In college I often ditched my friends at the library to hit up a noisy coffee shop. Complete silence creeps me out. (Plus, any place that bans snacks is not cool with me.)</p> <p>Find a work haven that works for you &mdash; or do your best to make one <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/setting-up-a-home-office-on-the-cheap" target="_blank">in the workspace you have</a>.</p> <h2>5. Don't Panic</h2> <p>If there's one thing that can derail a rush for a tight deadline, it's letting the idea that <em>you'll never be able to finish this in a million years</em> run you over. If you have a <em>really tight</em> deadline, that one's going to be hanging over your head the whole time. Just keep calm <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-get-back-on-track" target="_blank">and carry on</a>. It's the only way to get there.</p> <h2>6. Be Willing to Let Go</h2> <p>I tend to overestimate what I'm capable of. Calling it ambition makes it sound like a good thing, but what it really means in practical terms is that my to-do list becomes like one of those unfurling scrolls that unrolls for several feet (the sound of trumpets is palpable). When I have a tight deadline, I have to throw my to-do list away and forget about it. If you're a perfectionist, meeting a deadline might mean letting go a little bit in other ways, too. It's always possible to do things better, but when time is tight you may have to settle for the best you can do right now.</p> <h2>7. Ask for Help</h2> <p>I'm not great at asking other people for help, but you'd be amazed at how helpful and sympathetic people will be if you just tell them how close to a total meltdown you actually are. If you're really struggling, ask for what you need, be it help with the dishes, a listening ear, or just some space. A tough job is a lot easier when it's a team effort.</p> <h2>8. Celebrate</h2> <p>If you've been under pressure for few days (or weeks...or years), don't forget to celebrate when the job's done. It's easy to be so overcome with relief when a project's over that you forget to be happy about it. Doing something fun helps put a more positive spin on all that stress. Plus, knowing that you'll celebrate your next big deadline will give you something to look forward when things get tough.</p> <p>Hitting a tough deadline is never easy, but I've done it enough times to know that there are a few things you can do to make it much less stressful, and doing those things will add years to your life.</p> <p><em>How do you meet tight deadlines? Hurry up and share your time-cheating tricks in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tara-struyk">Tara Struyk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-panic-how-to-meet-a-deadline">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work">6 Ways to Deal When You&#039;re Way Behind at Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-personal-productivity-ruleswhat-are-yours">My Personal Productivity Rules...What Are Yours?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-time-management-skills-that-will-help-your-kid-win-at-school">10 Time-Management Skills That Will Help Your Kid Win at School</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-why-your-projects-always-take-longer-than-you-expect">This Is Why Your Projects Always Take Longer Than You Expect</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive">Flashback Friday: 46 Easy Ways to Be More Productive</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Productivity deadlines planning time management Tue, 23 Jul 2013 10:00:33 +0000 Tara Struyk 980596 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Stick to Personal Deadlines http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-stick-to-personal-deadlines <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-stick-to-personal-deadlines" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/clock-4986991-small.jpg" alt="clock" title="clock" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's a big difference between a deadline that your boss sets for you and one you set for yourself. Even if there's a little grumbling along the way, you'll work hard to meet a deadline that a manager imposes because you know that there are serious consequences to not getting your work done. But if you've set a personal deadline, it can be harder to stick to &mdash; there's just not the same type of consequence in place. You aren't going to fire yourself, so you can feel like pushing a deadline back a little won't be a problem. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tools-to-get-organized-family-style" target="_blank">Tools to Get Organized, Family Style</a>)</p> <p>But there are ways to make sure that you can stay on track to meet your personal deadlines. The process isn't always easy, but if the deadline you're shooting for is an important one, working to keep it makes sense.</p> <h2>Create an External Deadline</h2> <p>If we work better when someone else assigns our deadlines, why not find a way <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-get-back-on-track" target="_blank">to make your personal deadlines external</a>? Something as simple as tying your personal deadline to something bigger &mdash; something that you have to do for someone else &mdash; can help dramatically. For instance, if you're trying to get some repairs done around the house, you might consider inviting someone over for dinner the day after the deadline you've set. That way, since you don't want visitors to see problems in your house, you've got a hard deadline to complete those repairs.</p> <p>The same approach works for a variety of different tasks: planning to submit a project to a contest can help you focus on a deadline, as can scheduling a review or a critique with a professional. External deadlines are even more effective if you can connect them to consequences, like losing a fee paid for a critique if you aren't ready for it by the deadline.</p> <h2>Arrange for Accountability</h2> <p>We're all reluctant to look bad in front of other people. That unwillingness to embarrass ourselves makes it easier to arrange for accountability. Just mentioning a project to someone who is likely to ask about it in the future means that you have an incentive to keep working on it, so that you don't have to tell that individual that you forgot all about your grand plan.</p> <p>You can also arrange for more formal accountability. Tell a friend or a family member that you want them to keep asking you about your progress. Ask for a little nagging so that you keep moving towards that deadline. Don't ask anyone you know who will give you slack, though. You may find yourself pushing back a deadline with his or her permission.</p> <h2>Break Down That Deadline</h2> <p>Setting an ambitious goal is a good idea, but if you don't know how you're going to get there, your deadline may roll around with nothing accomplished.</p> <p>Break down the work you need to do <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-benefits-of-a-task-management-system" target="_blank">into the smallest pieces you can</a>. If a step will only take you a few minutes to complete, it's a lot harder to procrastinate. It may even take you more time to figure out a way to procrastinate than to cross that first step off your list.</p> <p>You can tie smaller steps into external deadlines or accountability of their own. If you're working on a project for the long haul, creating some small wins and met deadlines can help you build up some momentum.</p> <h2>Create a Habit of Work</h2> <p>Unless you're regularly tackling big projects of your own, it's likely that pursuing a particular deadline isn't part of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tips-for-accomplishing-more-in-a-day" target="_blank">your daily routine</a>. If you can make a habit of doing a little work towards a particular goal or deadline every day, it's going to be a lot easier to accomplish it.</p> <p>Sure, you may still need to carve some big blocks of time out of your schedule to do some of the work, but having the habit means that you're thinking about the next step you need to complete each day.</p> <h2>Work on One Deadline at a Time</h2> <p>All of these approaches can help you make good progress towards any deadline you set yourself. But don't push too hard. Trying to meet big, overlapping deadlines can mean that you're taking on too much to realistically accomplish. Make sure your deadlines are realistic.</p> <p><em>How do you stick to personal deadlines?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-stick-to-personal-deadlines&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Stick%2520to%2520Personal%2520Deadlines.jpg&amp;description=Change%20Your%20Life%20With%20a%2030%20Day%20Challenge"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Stick%20to%20Personal%20Deadlines.jpg" alt="How to Stick to Personal Deadlines" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-bram">Thursday Bram</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-stick-to-personal-deadlines">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/but-i-dont-want-to-secrets-to-self-motivation">But I Don&#039;t Want To! Secrets to Self-Motivation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-it-done-how-to-measure-your-goals">Get It Done: How to Measure Your Goals</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-benefits-of-changing-your-routine">The Benefits of Changing Your Routine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-boost-creativity">25 Ways to Boost Creativity</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-self-improvement-apps-to-make-you-smarter-stronger-and-happier">10 Self-Improvement Apps to Make You Smarter, Stronger, and Happier</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development Productivity deadlines getting things done self-motivation Thu, 18 Apr 2013 10:24:34 +0000 Thursday Bram 973457 at http://www.wisebread.com