Thursday, November 19, 2015

The 10 Commandments For Succeeding On The Farm/Homestead - Part 1

1.  You Need To Stay At Home

If you intend to farm full-time, then you need to park that vehicle of yours. If you still want to live the life of a social butterfly, doing things such little league and dance class then it would be best to stay in town. You need to think like a farmer, allow yourself to thank that your farm is now your life and your job. Trips to town are costly, not just in the cost of fuel but also in the cost of your time. I know for us personally, just running to the grocery store is a half a day endeavor. More if I got other errands to add to it.
Start thinking of your farm as your life, your work and even your recreation. Allow it to energize you and be a place of contentment. Now don’t think that every farmer needs to be a hermit, but balance is what is needed when you partake in activities outside of the farm. don’t get involved in every committee or event that is posted in the local newspaper.
Remember we only have 24 hours in a day, & if you fail to recognize the cost of being away from the farm, you WILL fail.  Success requires discipline. Take a dieter, if they are to lose weight they requires dietary self-discipline. Farming is no different.

2. Luxuries; Be Honest About Them

You will need to separate business from pleasure. A perfect example would be a horse for pleasure riding.  I can speak from personal experience on this topic because I have had horses and I do have to say they are definitely profit suckers. They are extremely expensive. If your farm is already providing a full-time income meeting all your expenses that is a different story.
Hold off on fancy designer labels, toys such as boats, ATV’s, & luxury type cars until your farm is profitable. I know it would be nice to have these things, you may even try to justify that an ATV would be beneficial for your farm.  But remember that all unnecessary items you buy in the beginning will either delay or destroy your chance of becoming successful.
It is not being suggested that you live like a pioneer but don’t live like a king either.
As long as your vehicle is mechanically sound and can get you from point A to point B, is all that matters.

3. Get To Know Your Neighbors

If You just moved to the area, don’t go acting like a Big-Know-It-All! Don’t complain about their unsightly yard and never say a demeaning word against any of your neighbors. I can guarantee that it WILL get back to them. If you live in an area like I do, they’re all related and blood is thicker than water!
Be friendly, invite them over from time to time for dinner. Help them when you can. We never know when we may need help. We’ve help neighbors put up hay, sheer alpacas, make apple cider, pick up groceries when we go to town, take them to medical appointments or what ever else may be of necessity. In return, they have helped us put up hay, dropped off vegetables from their garden when the deer ate our produce, feed our animals when we go out-of-town, cut trees off the road when a storm downed them, lent us a generator when the electricity was out for 9 days!
If you want friends, then you need to be a friend yourself. Be patient, these relationships can take years to build. Even if they never become your BFF, then at least they are close enough that you can call on them when in the midst of a crisis.

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