April 15 fills many people with dread. That’s when your federal income tax return must be filed. (Actually it’s the 17th this year due a weekend, but that’s not much of a reprieve.)
If you’re lucky, you might just be getting a tax refund. But unfortunately some unlucky people will end up owing more…
Even with the prospect of a refund, tax season is stressful. People lose sleep. It’s a lot of work getting all your receipts in order, then filling out the forms. Tax software helps, and you could always have an accountant do the paperwork and filing, but you still have to dig up all the information.
And then wait, hoping for a tax refund but dreading the possibility that this year you’ll owe money.
This article doesn’t have any tips for filing your returns. But it does offer a little relief in the form of tax season tips to help take the stress off.
Here is a collection of 10 high-tech ways to take the stress off this tax season.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #1
Sound + Sleep
Tossing and turning over that tax filing deadline?
Sound of Sleep may just have the answer with its Sound + Sleep. This is an advanced sleep machine. Much more than just a white noise generator, it plays a selection of high definition recorded sounds that are randomized, so no looping. Playback is via a 3-inch driver, so it sounds pretty good, too.
I have one. Set at ‘Meadow’ it helps me to drift off feeling like I’m camping in the great outdoors.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #2
Philips Somneo Sleep and Wake-Up Light
The Somneo Sleep and Wake-Up Light from Philips simulates the sunrise and sunset.
That may not sound like a big deal, but having a light source that gradually wakes you up with a sunrise is a heck of a lot more relaxing than an alarm clock suddenly going off.
According to Philips:
“Independent studies have shown that our wake-up light improves the quality of waking up, improves your mood and makes you feel more refreshed in the morning.”
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #3
There’s nothing like being surrounded by lush plants to help you to relax. But you don’t want to be stressing about keeping them alive.
These self-contained units have everything needed to grow fresh food like tomatoes and strawberries (also very good to have handy during stressful times) and even flowers, with minimal effort. Each kit includes the growing base, seedlings, nutrients (no soil required) and grow lights. Some even offer Wi-Fi connectivity to your smartphone for automated functions.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #4
Nanoleaf Light Panels
When I’m stressed, I like to put on some music and turn on my Nanoleaf smart lights.
These aren’t like other smart light systems. Instead of a bulb, each panel is a flat triangle measuring about 9-inches on a side. Click them together, stick them to a wall (or any surface) and create a unique lighting configuration.
Then choose a relaxing pattern from the app and let the Nanoleaf light panels set a relaxing mood. You can even use them as a music visualizer, with the Rythym module.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #5
There are now so many foam mattresses being flogged online that it’s impossible to keep them all straight.
I’m partial to Helix, and here’s why.
Most of those foam mattresses let you choose the size and that’s about it. Helix takes high tech sleep to a new level by customizing each mattress according to a range of user preferences. The company can even create a version like the one I have, a single mattress that’s divided into soft/warm on one side and firm/cool on the other so my wife and I both get a good night’s sleep.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #6
If you’re going to have to sit at a desk to do your taxes, you may as well sit in a decent chair. The Ergohuman Chair may not get you bigger tax refund, but you’ll certainly feel less stressed while doing your taxes if you’re sitting in it.
This isn’t one of those cheap chairs you’ll find in the big box stores. It’s loaded with features and designed to offer a comfortable and ergonomic seat, even for extended periods.
And although it’s not cheap, the Ergohuman chair is hundreds of dollars less than options like Herman Miller’s Aeron.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #7
Human Touch WholeBody Massage Chair
If the thought of income taxes has you stressed, what better way to relax than a massage?
With the Human Touch WholeBody Massage Chair, you can get a massage whenever you want. There are multiple programmed massages, including a retractable ottoman with a calf and foot massager.
I have one of these in our family room, and whenever I’m stressed out — because of work, deadlines or working on my taxes — 20 minutes on the massage chair is enough to get rid of all the tension.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #8
Ever tried to fall asleep listening to music, but woke up with earbuds jammed painfully in your ear? SleepPhones are the solution.
Flat drivers are integrated in a padded headband, with Bluetooth connectivity and 13-hour battery life.
Put on the SleepPhones and you can fall asleep listening to music — or meditation sounds, if that helps to reduce the tax season stress — without worry of a late-night headphone injury.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #9
Kobo Aura ONE
Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) may be the e-reader leader with its Kindle, but Kobo offers a better choice if you’re worried about blue light exposure adding to your income tax stress.
The Kobo Aura ONE isn’t just a superb e-reader, with a big screen for more natural reading. It also helps to combat the effects of blue light interfering with your sleep with its high tech ComfortLight Pro that slowly adjusts the display brightness and color to match the time of day.
Tax Season Tips: High-Tech Ways to Take the Stress Off #10
A video game console? Seriously?
If you’re stressing out about income tax, escaping with a video game can actually be a great way to relax. And no other console offers the advantages of the latest console from Nintendo Co., Ltd (ADR) (OTCMKTS:NTDOY), the Nintendo Switch.
There are hardcore games like Doom if you want to blow stuff up, but also plenty of less intense options. You could literally spend hours just wandering around and admiring the vistas of Hyrule in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. And with no TV required, you can pick up a Switch and get in 15 minutes of gaming any time, anywhere — whenever you need a break
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.