Now that the farming season is in full swing, the line between work and life has probably become blurry or nonexistent. Well, it can be so easy to drown yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally into your projects that you forget about yourself. It happens to most of us when we’re so focused on getting work done. It’s time to start managing your health and well-being from the inside out, starting with a major dose of self-care. Here are a few things about farm life to help you to not only accept your way of life, but help you live your best life:
Stress is part of the job
There are so many things that can go wrong. Farming is not as easy as some make it out to be. Animals can die and there can be crop failure. You plan and prepare for months and then end up losing a lot of money. A disease/pest outbreak, drought… It happens. It’s not fair and is very stressful. So, as much as it’s important to be positive, keep the negatives in mind and try to learn ways that can help you deal with stress should you find yourself in such a position.
Prepare to be a salesman
If you’re more on the quiet side, selling won’t be a walk in the park. Finding the right customers requires networking. Sometimes, you win return clients from small talk such as conversations about ways of cooking fresh beans, or maybe how you love to dry herbs. This leads to discussions about your farm and what you do. Before you know it, you have new customers. Absolutely rewarding!
You will be tired
This is not a lazy man’s job. You will have never felt so exhausted in your whole life. At the end of a long day, all you’ll want to do lay down and sleep for a month a solid month. Sorry, the job continues the next day. The main reason for your exhaustion comes from the next point:
You will work hard
Not only will you work hard, but you’ll also love working hard. It’s your passion after all. You enjoy being out in the fields. The workload of farming and selling your produce will surprise and perhaps deeply startle you. Don’t despair, it gets easier. You’ll have time to rest offseason and enjoy the fruit of your labour.
Naysayers will always be there
You will get discouraged. Some people won’t like your idea of planting certain crops, while others just won’t like your prices. The average person has no idea how much it costs and the time you put in to grow vegetables from seed to harvest and get them to markets. All they do is compare prices from retail stores. Whatever the case, there will be a few people supporting you all the time. This is the kind of company you need to keep. Remember the first point, you could fail. You don’t want to give up on farming because things went wrong once and the naysayers discouraged you. Stay focused and keep winning.
You’ll eat what you farm
This is the best part of the job. Because you know what chemicals others use, you’ll only want to eat what you grow. You will honor the vegetables and meat that comes to your table and you will know every aspect of their stories. Just remember, if you’re farming to make money, slow down on dashing out all your vegetables. Those who appreciate what you give them free of charge will become customers.
You’ll accept failure
One of the biggest and hardest teachers will be failure. It won’t be easy to manage. But, it will happen. All you have to do is embrace the challenge and learn from your mistakes. Failing is not a stop sign. It will make you a better farmer. You have to see failure as the beginning and the middle, but never entertain it as an end. Celebrate your successes too and take note of them. They’ll help you do things right the next time around.
You’ll become comfortable in your own skin
Leaving the house in gumboots will become the norm. Something just happens to you that you don’t care what anyone thinks about the way you look. It could be because you’re eating the food you grow. Or maybe, it’s the money you’re making that makes you not care. Maybe you want to become one with the soil. It could just be your age – you’re getting old! Whatever it is, farming changes you. You only live once – Enjoy it!