Paying taxes isn’t usually an easy or fun task. However, getting a tax return is a much more positive experience. This year, put the money you get back toward your mental and physical well-being.
Improve your mental health
After the stress of paying taxes, it’s time to give your mind the love it deserves. When you put your return toward improving your mental health, you can boost your mood, creativity, and productivity.
Enroll in therapy
Not every insurance plan covers mental health services. If this is true for you, you can put your refund aside to pay for therapy sessions. If you have mental health coverage in your insurance plan, then use the money to pay for your out-of-pocket copay at each visit.
Get a massage
Chronic stress can reduce your immune system’s effectiveness. If you have difficulty managing stress, consider scheduling massages as part of your wellness routine. A sixty-minute massage can lower cortisol, the stress hormone, by up to 30 percent after one session. There are different types of massages, so find a licensed massage therapist who can work with your goals in mind. Some spas offer package deals, so be sure to ask if you can purchase a bundle of massages at a discounted rate. By prepaying for a few weeks of services, you’re more likely to put the time aside for self-care.
Fire up your fitness routine
Exercise is essential to keeping your body in good health, but the costs associated with workout programs and gear can deter people from having a consistent fitness routine. You can use your refund to help you keep up with your exercise routine.
Buy a fitness tracker
Tracking your progress is an essential step toward accomplishing your goals. If you’re a visually-inclined person and like to stay organized, you could benefit from a fitness tracker, such as an Apple Watch or a Fitbit. These trackers can record the details of your workout, from your heart rate to calories burned, and all you need to do is press a button to review how you’re progressing over time.
Invest in gym equipment or a membership
You don’t need a lot of gym equipment to work out effectively, but it can help to have a few pieces of high-quality equipment on hand if you work out at home. Consider purchasing small items such as a set of weights, or go big and invest in a workout machine like a treadmill. Be sure to have enough space reserved in your home for your new purchase to avoid overcrowding your workout area. If you prefer to exercise at a gym, use your refund to pay for a membership. If you know you’ll use it regularly, ask if the gym has a discount for paying a few months to a year of fees in advance.
Take a class
Whether you attend online or in-person, a guided workout from a professional can help you exercise more effectively. If you’ve ever wanted to take a workout class at a local gym or subscribe to a fitness app with a library of workout videos, such as Peloton and Apple Fitness+, now is the time to try it out! Check sites and apps like Groupon for local fitness class deals.
Eat well, feel well
Your diet affects every part of your health, so it’s important to fuel yourself properly to ward off sickness and disease. Healthy foods and meals can be expensive and time-consuming to plan. However, you can use your extra spending money to change your relationship with food.
Learn about healthy eating
Invest in a few nutrition classes or a couple one-on-one sessions with a registered dietician to set yourself up for a lifetime of successful healthy eating. Nutritional experts can give you eating plans tailored to your health concerns and budget. Even after the classes or sessions are over, you can keep the information you learned to help guide your meal planning.
Subscribe to a meal-prep service
If your journey to healthy eating is just beginning, a meal-plan service can help teach you what to eat and how to cook it. Use your refund to pay for a few weeks of a healthy meal-delivery service like HelloFresh or Blue Apron. Most services can accommodate different dietary restrictions, such as vegetarian or gluten-free, so be sure to pick a meal plan that fits your ingredient preferences.
A little bit of money can go a long way. Use your tax refund this year to try something new that could improve your health.