procrastinate bookkeepingDo you procrastinate your bookkeeping? For many small business owners, taking the time to enter receipts into a database, invoice their clients, and/or follow up on payments can feel like an exhausting chore.

And when business gets busy, it’s usually one thing that is easy to avoid. “I’ll do it tomorrow,” is the excuse that I hear the most often … until it’s time to do your taxes and your accounts are almost impossible to decipher. Was that $58.37 receipt for entertainment or a training program?

Why is bookkeeping so important? You need to track your cash flow with an organized system that tells you what money is coming in from clients, and what money is going out to pay the bills. And a healthy business is all about a healthy bottom line.

There are several easy solutions to keep you on track. Let’s review how you can stop suffering from Bookkeeping Procrastination Syndrome:

Tip #1 – Spend time setting up a system that will make updating your books each week easy and quick. This can be as simple as putting all your receipts in a special box so that they are ready to enter all at once during your bookkeeping session.

Tip #2 – Do your bookkeeping on the same day each week no matter what. Forming a habit makes it more likely that you’ll stick with it, even when you get busy with paying client work. If possible, do it at the same time of day each week, too.

Tip #3 – Pick a quiet time for your bookkeeping with few interruptions. When I’m in Quickbooks, I shut down everything else on my desktop and put my phone to the side. You don’t want distractions when you’re crunching numbers.

Tip #4 – Make sure you have access to the things you need to get your bookkeeping done efficiently. You’ll want to keep a calculator on hand and have internet access while you work to make the process faster for you.

Tip #5 – Splurge a little on fun office supplies that make bookkeeping more enjoyable. This might just be a funny looking calculator, or a cool pen you only use for tallying invoices, but it will help keep you in the money mindset. My favorite site for supplies is See Jane Work.

Tip #6 – Have the right tools to make bookkeeping a breeze. If you feel overwhelmed even considering how to keep your books, hire someone to do it for you. Take some time to set up a system that works for you – whether it’s Quickbooks or simple Excel spreadsheets, they have to be easy for you to work with.

Personally, I like Saturday mornings for my own bookkeeping, but that’s because I’m working on everyone else’s during the week! Don’t pick a time that you’re likely to never ignore, like Friday evening.

Your bookkeeping is too important to push off. Even if you have Bookkeeping Procrastination Syndrome, if you get yourself in the habit of doing your books, you’ll soon find that your good habits will pay off during tax time.