Life on a small farm or homestead can be overwhelming, with jobs which all seem to need doing at the same time. This is why priorities need to be set so tasks which are important don't get overlooked. 

In an ideal world, we would have one thing to do at a time but let's be realistic, does that ever happen on your farm? I know it doesn't on ours. Just when we seem to be getting caught up, something happens. We might get an equipment failure, an ill animal or even something in the house which needs repairing and can't wait. 

Things can spiral out of control and it is difficult to get a handle on it. 

Sometimes we do a partial job and hope to get back to it later, of course later never comes and that half-assed job doesn't last. I wonder if you are nodding in agreement with this statement. 

Here are items which need to be considered when making a priority list for your farm.

Weather: Although this can't always be predicted there are trends. For planting there is a fairly defined season when the best time to plant is. The weather for most farmers, is a high priority and often plans are changed rapidly as unexpected weather hits. 

Health: More important than weather of course, but often we neglect to take care of our own health. When was the last time you had a check up? You're probably in great shape with all the farm work you do but there is probably a nagging feeling cropping up that you should go and get checked out. Make an appointment and stop worrying about it. Your farm will have to wait. Make time for yourself, even if it is a long soak in a bath, a yoga class or something which will relax and ground you. Take a day trip to somewhere which doesn't sell plumbing or farm supplies and enjoy it.
 Visit a friend, opt for one who is supportive. 

Money: I wasn't sure how far up the list this should go but it needs to be close to the top as most small farmers it is a constant worry. Sometimes it can seem like your wallet is permanently open and cash is flying out. Buying fertilizer, parts for machinery, feed for animals and so the list goes on. Although you might have gotten out of the rat race, you may feel like you're on a hamster's wheel going round and round and having to run faster. No one said life on the farm was going to be easy but you may not have realized it was going to be so hard. 

Animals: Whether you are trying to add to or eliminate some of the animals on your farm, this often takes an enormous amount of time and thought. Make a point of getting rid, either eating or selling, any animals which aren't making you money, feeding you, or which bring you joy.  I know it can be hard if there is an emotional connection but other people can look after your animal equally as well as you. 

These are just some of the priorities which need to be addressed, your list may be different. It's all about finding a balance and staying flexible so that when the unexpected happens, although you might not be ready for it, you will deal with it. 


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