There comes a point when you know you need to reevaluate and regroup, and we hit that point 3 months ago. Our stress levels were through the roof. We were angry and disappointed in ourselves. We thought this was God’s plan for us, why couldn’t we make our farm work? We had the customers, we have the tools, and the land, and the plants. Why would He lead us in this direction, just so we could fall flat on our face?
So we did a 180. Cut our losses, we stopped trying to salvage the tomato field and other things that weren’t working. We figured at this point, any time we spent on that would take away from doing other things that could actually help pay the bills. Right? Then we sat down and had a heart-to-heart. What did we like most about our farm, what did we enjoy doing every day, which chores did we dread and avoid? How can we refocus around those things? Rj admitted that though he absolutely has found his calling as a farmer, when he started college, he really wanted to have a greenhouse operation. Now that was the last thing that got worked on lately. I, meanwhile, kept thinking back to my college major: Creative Writing, and my “favorite” chore of the day, working with the animals.
How can we incorporate these things and refocus our farm plan, meanwhile still expect to pay the bills and eliminate some stress? We thought on it, for a LONG time. We hashed through scenarios, ran numbers, and stopped trying to force something that wasn’t working. It’s just too difficult at this point in our lives to maintain the amount of crops we planted, at least not with 5-6 kids on the side.
We had to come to terms that it’s okay to change directions. We are our own bosses, if we couldn’t change our mind, what were we really doing here exactly? Flexibility is so important when you’re self employed. You need to make what works work better, and the stuff that doesn’t work: forget and learn from it. Or in our case, and this is so important to me, HELP OTHERS learn from it. Prevent others from making the same mistakes that we did, God provides enough for us all to be happy and successful, we don’t have to keep a “secret edge” and compete. God provides enough, He is enough. He will provide a path or a niche to make your farm or business set apart from others. We don’t have to do it all.
OUR NEW PLAN
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