5 Things We Learned from Brené Brown About the Courage to Be Creative at Re:Make 2016
Since Dr. Brené Brown came on the scene with her massively popular TED Talk back in 2010, she’s been preaching the importance of courage and the destructiveness of shame. Her incredible message has won her fans the world over, including Oprah Winfrey who calls her a “soulmate.” At Re:Make 2016, she took the stage to talk specifically to makers. Her message: “If you send your art into the world with an armored heart, it’s got no magic in it. It’s got no joy in it.” So how do you take off that armor?
1. “You must live in the arena.” What’s the arena? “The arena is where you put your thoughts, your art out there and aren’t afraid what people are going to think, ” she said. This is the place where you are vulnerable and will get your butt kicked. But, you need to tell yourself, “I will live in the arena. I’ll live my life in a brave way that I can be proud of.”
2. “If you are not in the arena getting your ass kicked every day, I’m not open to your feedback.” Brené points out that the arena’s seats are filled with shame, inadequacy and comparison. “You can’t focus in those seats,” she adds. At some point, you have to say, “I’m going to be brave anyway and you’re not the people I’m going to look at.” She recommends taking a one-inch by one-inch piece of paper, and use it to make a list of the people whose opinion really matter. *Those* are the seats you want to watch.
3. “You’ve gotta stop being cool. Cool is an emotional straightjacket.” Brené points out that cool shuts us down, because you start paying too much attention to the judgment of others. “If you’ve got one eye on the other lane, you’ll just create something someone else is creating.”
4. “Talk to yourself like you’d talk to someone you love. Share your story with somebody you trust.” Too often, we as makers tear ourselves down the minute we make a mistake or in a moment of insecurity. Brené says to think about how you’d talk to a child. Would you tell that child, “That was stupid!” Never. Choose self-love over self-criticism.
5. “Not using your creativity is not benign.” Brené points out that many of us choose to drop out instead of leaving ourselves open. She reiterates her trademark line: “Vulnerability is the courage to show up and put your creativity into the world. “As makers, you have to choose courage or choose comfort.”
Tell us your most inspiring Brené Brown moment of all time by tweeting us @britandco!
(Photo via Chris Andre)
Welcome to Selfmade Finance School, our new money series with Block Advisors to help small business owners with their tax, bookkeeping, and payroll needs year-round. This week, we explore the tax implications of bringing family members into your business.
The question for today is this: Does hiring your family members make sense for your business? Let me be clear. This is not a piece about whether hiring your family members makes sense for your relationships with those family members. As someone who is part of a family business, I could fill up a lot more than 600 words on my opinions about that. For today's purposes, we focus on whether it makes sense from an overall "good business and tax implication" perspective. As it turns out, there is a decent amount of tax nuance when it comes to employing your family. Let's break it down based on relationship to the employee:
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Spouses Who Are In Business Together
Personally, if I had to be in business with my husband, it would not go well. However, many couples build viable, strong businesses together and I say, good for them! Depending on how you have your business entity structured, it will make a big difference on the tax treatment of you and your spouse working as partners. Because a business jointly owned and operated by a married couple is generally treated as a partnership for Federal tax purposes, the spouses must comply with filing and record keeping requirements imposed on partnerships and their partners. The election to file two Schedule C (Form 1040) forms, (one for each spouse) permits certain married co-owners to avoid filing partnership returns, provided that each spouse separately reports a share of all the businesses' items of income, gain, loss, deduction, and credit. Under the election, both spouses will be subject to self-employment tax and on net earnings from self-employment and receive credit for Social Security earnings.
One Spouse Employs Another
If you have a dynamic where your spouse is an employee of your business, then your spouse's wages are subject to income tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes. If you are self-employed (not a corporation or a partnership), your spouse's pay does not have to be included in your federal unemployment tax account (FUTA) contributions and payments. However, if your business is a corporation or a partnership you must include that spouse's pay in your unemployment tax contribution calculation.
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You Employ Your Child
First, let's be clear. I work in my family business, but I am an adult, so I am treated just like a normal employee. However, if you, for example, run a family restaurant and want to hire your children under 18 to work for you, there are some tax benefits. But first, you should check with your state for rules on how many hours minors can work (in non-agricultural jobs) and reference the Fair Labor Standards Act for information on limitations on the kinds of work children can perform.
"This is an often overlooked or under-utilized strategy. Paying your children for true services they provide in your business can be a powerful tax-saving tool," says Cathi Reed, Block Advisors Regional Director. "If you are a sole-proprietorship or single member LLC, and the child is less than 18 years of age, the business is not required to withhold FICA or payroll taxes. The child can use his or her standard deduction against income you pay."
You Hire Your Parent
Oh dear. If you are brave enough to do this, know that you will need to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes on your parent's wages and make the appropriate withholdings, but you don't have to pay unemployment taxes. Now all you have to do is convince your parent that you are the boss. Have fun with that!
Is Hiring Family Members Worth It For The Tax Benefits?
"There are some positive tax advantages to hiring family members. It's important to treat a family member like any other employee. Hiring your children can result in substantial savings for businesses. Make sure your child has real, age-appropriate work to do and a reasonable pay rate, comparable to other employees. Consult with a Block Advisors small business certified tax pro to ensure that you are complying with all requirements," advises Reed. "Block Advisors, a team within H&R Block, is dedicated to meeting the tax, bookkeeping and payroll needs of small business owners year-round. To start working with the tax experts at Block Advisors, visit blockadvisors.com."
In my opinion, you should not hire a family member solely because of the tax benefits. You should always hire based on whether that person is right for the job and keep in mind how this hire could materially impact your relationship with that person and others in your family. Finally, as I mentioned, make sure you have a tax professional on your team when making these determinations. As you can see, things can get a little tricky!
*All details were sourced from IRS.gov and blockadvisors.com