Manage Stress Like a Farmer

By Blake Gendebien

“Agriculture is the earliest and most honorable of arts.” – Rousseau

Farmers deal with a lot of stress!  In fact, many people say it is the most stressful occupation in world.  There are so many variables outside of your control, weather, yield, product sales prices, animal health, employee management and more.

These are some of the ways I have found that help me manage my daily stress and keep me going. Life is about the little things and making small adjustments can add big relief!

1. Get up a 1/2 hour early
I do something I like before my day officially starts. This is my time to connect with myself, organize my thoughts and ease into my day.

2. Take time to eat breakfast
This gives me the nourishment and energy I need to walk out the door feeling good and have a productive day.

3. Saying hello to employees and coworkers
I always ask how people are doing and make genuine contact. This is as important as breakfast. It gives my team the nourishment they need to feel valued.

4. When someone makes a mistake, I remember the farm is a team
We pick each other up and help each other get better. We don’t yell or insult each other.

5. Understanding that many things in life are out of our control
As a farmer, I need to constantly be adaptable and stay flexible to the newness of every new day.

6. Problem solving
There is always an opportunity to make a situation better when a challenge surfaces.  Looking for the improvements instead of looking at the problems, results in better progress.

7. Embrace family, friends and loved ones
Spending time in nature together creates unforgettable and lasting memories. We pull weeds together and play soccer. It’s not about what we are doing, it’s about doing things together that makes this awesome!

8. Eat dinner together!
Sounds simple… but we do this and it really connects us at the end of a long day. It also helps us support each other for a new day tomorrow.

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