[IMGCAP(1)]In February, I wrote an article about the challenge I was about to embark on: tax season along with training for an Ironman competition.
To complete the story, below are some key dates and events that occurred during the Ironman Tax Season:
March 1, 2015 The First Mistake: I put a fun half-marathon on my calendar for the day, thinking I was going to train on this day anyway, so why not just run a half-marathon. The race was no doubt fun, but a complete mistake. My competitive juices got the best of me, so when I saw I could reach a personal record, I pushed too hard. I was sore for the next two weeks mentally and physically. I could barely sit at my desk. My work suffered, my training suffered, and my wife had to help me with the kids, rather than being able to help her. Fail!
March 9, 2015 The Realization: As I reviewed my schedule on the night of March 8, I chuckled to myself when my training schedule called for 40 minutes in the pool, followed by 50 minutes on the treadmill. That was to be followed by taking my son to preschool, a scheduling meeting in the office, four standing meetings with clients, a looming March 15 deadline, a lunch with a staff that I mentor, a networking event in the evening, eating dinner with my family, and helping to put my kids to sleep.
There would be very little sleep for me over the next month and a half. The work is challenging, but incredibly rewarding. The next month and half were going to be amazing.
March 17, 2015 - St. Patty’s Day: With March 15 in our rearview mirror it was time to celebrate for a couple hours. A local law firm hosts an annual St. Patrick’s Day party, which gave me a couple hours to A) unwind, and B) see people that I may have inadvertently neglected over the last month. I apologized, I caught up, I explained, I cleared the air, and I developed new relationships that are clearly going to create new work over the summer! I can’t wait!
April 5, 2015 Passover: Unfortunately my extended family lives about three hours south of where my family lives. As such, this gave me a chance to have three hours of quality time in the car with my wife and kids. Once I figured out how to put my bike on the car (I had to train despite the holiday), we had a great celebration with my extended family. But with tax season and Ironman training, there is work to be done. I made sure that the hours that I spent with my family, I stayed in the moment. Outside of those times, I was up early training or staying up late responding to emails and updating projects. All in all, this was truly the weekend that I found I hit a stride in balancing my training, work and family time.
April 26, 2015 Race Day: This California kid has never experienced Texas humidity. The race was amazing! But reflecting upon the last three months was even more meaningful. During the 5 hour 12 minute race (I beat my goal time by 48 minutes), I was able to reflect upon all of the amazing changes that have occurred during the last three months. I thought about the way my staff stepped up during this period. How they responded to the challenges and took responsibility for great client service was amazing. Focusing on the projects that challenged me and delegating those other projects truly gave me the confidence to move forward with my career. It truly taught me that no challenge is insurmountable.
Result - My family is relieved that the Ironman Tax Season is over. The lessons we learned as a family are irreplaceable. I have become a better professional and community member due to this experience. I have become more patient in attacking challenges. And I have become more adaptable to bypassing imperfections to meet my goals. And, perhaps most exciting of all, this experience has given me the confidence to move on from my current steady position as a manager within an accounting firm to focus more time on the projects I am truly passionate about. I will be looking to offer organizational development, business development and leadership opportunities to enhance the impact CPAs are making in today's ever-changing economy.
Thank you, first and foremost, to my wife and kids for being patient with me the last couple months. To Accounting Today for allowing me to share this journey. And to Wiebe Hinton Hambalek (my previous employer) for the flexibility it provided to put to use the skills I have into a nontraditional role within an accounting practice.
Next up Run a Boston Marathon-qualifying time. Work hard, train hard, live life to its fullest. I look forward to seeing you out on the course!
Adam Blitz is a CPA and a relationship builder. Through his 10+ years in public accounting, he has refined his ability to develop relationships with partners and clients alike in the pursuit of enhancing business profitability and individual satisfaction. Adam’s passion for business development stems purely from the notion that CPA’s help people! Adam works with professional service firms to enhance relationships with clients, vendors, staff and communities for the purpose of developing revenue streams. Adam has a Masters in Leadership Studies and has published a thesis on the value a CPA provides to clients and staff. In his spare time you’ll find Adam hiking the Sierra Nevada’s or training for his next triathlon. You can reach Adam at Adam@getblitzedsolutions.com or via Twitter @getblitzed.
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