We don’t need a consultant to remind us that these are stressful times for the agriculture industry, and especially for commodities and dairy.
Many of us are feeling the effects of financial pressures on our business family and social life.
We will always experience stress in our lives. There are anticipated stressors such as the holiday season, marriage or the birth of a child. Those are stressful events we plan for and want, but unexpected and more threatening stressors may suddenly disrupt our lives without warning. These include unforeseen health problems, a plant closing in our community or an economic downturn. And a significant stressor such as an economic downturn in our industry often leads to other problems including marital tensions, family conflicts, accidents, or health problems.
Although we don’t have to ability to control many of the stressors we face, we have the power to manage how we respond to them. Stressful events are more likely to be resolved positively if we have a clear and realistic view of the problem, a strong support system, a history of managing stress successfully, a hardy disposition, an accurate understanding of our strengths and limitations, sound action plans, and a pro-active approach to tackling them.
The worst thing to do when we are feeling overwhelmed is to react impulsively or to put our head in the sand and hope it will go away. By doing nothing we end up feeling like victims.
When we develop a thoughtful plan and move forward, we feel better about ourselves. We receive a boost of confidence and morale and begin to find solutions that work. No matter the circumstances, we can do something to help ourselves.
How to be proactive in difficult times:
Outline the problems you face. Be honest and don’t avoid any issues even if they feel threatening.
List all of your alternatives, strengths, threats and think of them as unique opportunities to use to your advantage.
Consider what might happen to you and your family if you don’t take any action.
Communicate openly with family members.
Remain open to any possible change. Focus on the best alternatives.
Develop a written action plan to help you get through the current economic downturn.
An action plan includes a list of goals, tasks and specific steps you will take within definite time frames.
Remember that every problem has a solution.
When evaluating your situation think with your head and not just your heart.
Review your plan with a trusted advisor who will help you understand your financial options.
A trusted advisor is an agriculture and business expert who will look out for your best interests and critically assess your plan. You want an advisor who has the courage to question your action plan and to help you explore alternative solutions. A trusted advisor may not always say what you want to hear but they have the courage to be honest and to give you their best thoughts. They won’t tell you what to do because they respect your ability to find the best solution for you.
At Yankee Farm Credit we are here to help.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to your Loan Officer, or email Yankee Farm Credit at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (800)-639-3053.
Yankee Farm Credit Loan Officers are currently training with Dennis Morris, CEO, Institute of Respect, to help work more effectively with our customers in times of stress.
The services Dennis Morris offers draw on his 30 years of experience helping clients cultivate and strengthen leadership – as a psychotherapist, senior leader, executive coach, mediator and educator. What sets him apart from other consultants is his expertise as a therapist and VP of Clinical Programs in behavioral health before becoming an executive coach and consultant.
Clients appreciate the professionalism he brings to the table, derived from the combination of his clinical background and his business consulting experience in corporate, academic and nonprofit arenas. For a complete bio, visit www.instituteofrespect.com.