Minerva News

September 2018 Tasks
September 1st, 2018

I was in Berea, Kentucky last month for the Artists Thrive summit, and I had a fascinating conversation about the words we use to describe the work that goes into making art. Is it labor? Is it craft? Is it a practice?

 

Each of those words conjured a variety of images in our minds. For some, the word “labor” felt too much like a job, which shortchanged the professionalism inherent in art. For others, the word “labor” conveyed implicit value to the art because it implied work. Art is “real labor” not just a hobby, they argued.

 

For some, the word “practice” implied an amateur approach, something taken less seriously than work. For others, the word “practice” implied status. They were struck by similarities in vocabulary used in other white-collar professions: A medical practice, a legal practice, a creative practice.

 

What became abundantly clear is that our experiences, our geographies, and our perspectives shaped the way we heard these words. And no two people heard them exactly the same way.

 

So whatever you call your work – a practice, labor, a craft, your life – make sure to treasure it this month. Celebrate it this Labor Day and beyond. Because taking pride in what we do – no matter what we call it – is the secret to fulfillment.

 

The other secret to fulfillment, of course, is staying on top of your financial health. So this month, here are a few things you can do to stay on track:

 

  • Update your budget. Update your financial records to reflect what happened in August (and earlier months if they are lagging). Reconcile your bank statements to make sure you haven’t missed anything, and prepare for the rest of the year.

 

  • Pay your quarterly taxes. Your next estimated tax payment is due on September 15. As you calculate what this should be, it’s a good time to look at your year overall to see how you think things will end up. And if you have accidentally forgotten to make state quarterly payments this year, go ahead and do those now.

 

  • Check in with your withholdings. And speaking of how the year may end up, lots of tax professionals are talking about low withholdings. What does that mean? It means the amounts withheld from your W-2 paychecks may be a bit too low to cover your tax obligations for the year. (The transition to the new tax law is bound to take some getting used to… On all sides.) If you have a W-2 job, check in with your own withholdings to see if they seem right. And to be safe, save a bit extra (just in case).

 

Enjoy your labor of love this month – the financial part and the creative part.

Wishing you well from Columbus…

~Elaine

 

Posted in: Newsletter

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