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How’s it going  these days? Feeling torn apart with stress and worry, or are you cutting off the frayed edges of distress and patching up the problem areas of your life?

With a grateful heart, I’m encouraging you to identify the stress buttons in your life and develop your own unique solutions to cope.

Life , like harvest, is stressful, but how you react to breakdowns and plugged goals really affects your physical and mental condition . Identify the stress problems you’re reacting to so you know the causes of your stress. Combine monitors tell me my feeder or rotor are under stress, and I quickly slow down or shut off to avoid damage.

“Who or what ?” are your sources of stress?

Grab a sheet of paper. Write out a list of stressors…mine are clutter, lack of computer skills , lazy committee members, telemarketers….etc.

Stress facilitator Jim Cook says that “ as soon as you start to define the problem you can start to solve it.” Now on your paper answer “Why is this stressful?” Clutter in my son’s room is stressful to me if I interpret his mess as my problem, a reflection that I am not a good parent because he has not disciplined himself (yet) to be tidy!

How’s your blood pressure as you write your stress button list? Are you angry, embarrassed,  frustrated, hopeless, worried, upset , fearful? The negative emotions as part of our stress reaction cause inner fraying and tearing that is damaging to our health if left to be intense, continuously wearing on our minds and bodies. Cook says the “key is to get control over your emotions and use them as positive influences.” Think how mad you were when the combine plugged for the umpteenth time and you had all that adrenaline pumping through you to wrench back the feeder chain. It’s okay to be angry, but which emotions are causing the biggest impact?

My stress buttons could be family, friends, coworkers, home situations, work events, community hassles or my habits. Sleeping in, lack of consistent exercise, clutter, and computer frustration top my list of stressors. I get angry, frustrated,  and upset when these buttons “pop” and need to be re-aligned.

So what’s the solution?

Recognize some things can be mended, and other stuff has to be thrown away and forgotten about…or just accepted as it is. Cook urges clients to look at the stress factor:

1. rate the degree to which the reality of the situation can be accepted,

2. rate the reduction of stress as a result of that acceptance.

Some relationships in your farm family may be very testy and you’ve already tried to “make things better.” You can change your reaction and attitude towards others, but they are responsible for changing themselves.

Consider tips to help you relax,  “Self-care for stress reactions”. You can take better care of your body and mind with what you feed it. Talking, hot baths/showers, reading, journaling, playing cards, driving to the coffee shop, praying…find the repair kit that works for you. I had to laugh when I wanted to write this article my computer monitor stayed black as night…I phoned a computer whiz to help solve the problem…I’m slowing learning !

“All you have to do is look for an answer and you’ll find one” says Cook. “Ask and you will receive.” the Bible says. Things get stressful because we don’t have a clue how to handle them. Gaining skill and experience with the attitude “knowledge is power” will help you cope. Work on your PMA…a Positive Meaningful Action that will help to improve the stressful situation.

Books are where I often find help. Wes, my loving husband , teases that “if Elaine read it in a book somewhere then she knows it will work, even though I suggested it (the solution) before she read the book!” Make use of the Internet, toll-free numbers, and your local inter-library loan. Read your Bible.

You’re tired of  “making do” with your ragged feelings and fraying problems. Time to learn how to mend with reinforcing that will ensure longer wear life… “Quit hoping things will get better and start making things get better.” encourages Cook. “You can start by dealing with the things that are causing you the biggest problems, or begin by eliminating some of the small things that can be taken care of quickly . You can attack the problem by dealing with the people, situations, and habits, or you can learn to control the specific emotions that are causing the stress.”

The only mistake you can make is to do nothing. Do not ignore the mending of you!

 

Rave reviews

“A joy to work with, heard loud and clear. When the farmers laughed or asked a great question, I knew they were listening and really wanted to learn from her. Her tips were easy to understand. It was just about understanding that conflict happens, and to have the confidence in yourself to ask for what you want. In the glowing review from farmers after her presentation, I knew they had heard that loud and clear.”
Maddy Berner, Event Planner & Communications Coordinator, National Milk Producers Federation National Milk Producers Federation
“I wanted to say a HUGE thank you for your virtual kitchen table chat with Arlan Academy. My wife and I signed up as it was exceptionally relevant to our current journey with potentially transitioning to her parents’ farm. The session was able to cover so many aspects of these crucial conversations and hearing you speak to both sides of the conversation was eye opening for my own perspective on this topic. It seemed to be very well attended and sounded like there were many other people who would echo my thoughts and feelings on it.”
N. Oakley, Farmer, Ontario
“Elaine helped me allocate $1 Million of assets the night I listened to her. Elaine’s presentation brings value to the use of my services in my office.”
Don Forbes, Forbes Wealth Management
“I recently joined in and listened to your Healthy Farmer Agriwebinar for FMC. I truly enjoyed hearing your perspective and even went and grabbed my Mom, away from her work, to come and listen in on some of your main points as well! One area that really stood out for me, both personally with our own succession plans and with our clients, was your discussion involving "Instant Influence" and how ready are you to change? I loved this concept!”
Annessa Good, FCC Transition Specialist, Alberta
“Elaine Froese truly is the Farm Whisperer. With her big heart and stern resolve, she guides families through uncharted waters and helps them arrive safely at their desired destination. She has been there, done that, and has helped hundreds of families come out on the other side. With your family and your farm legacy on the line, you owe it to yourself to start this conversation. You do not need to do it alone. Let Elaine Froese guide you through. Your legacy is being written day by day. How will you be remembered?”
Tracy Brunet, Host of The Impact Farming Show & CEO of Farm Marketer
“You speak like you’ve been sitting at our kitchen table! You know our family issues well. I am feeling more comfortable understanding what we now need to do. Elaine Froese is real.”
Audience Member,
“I attended the meeting you spoke at in Stratford Ontario recently. We held an emergency family/farm meeting today because of issues that I had enough of. We used a 'talking stick' like you recommended and wrote a chart of rules. The rest of the family thought the idea that we needed a meeting was worth rolling their eyes over, until we got started. The younger ones were quick to clue in that they now have an opportunity to be bluntly honest. The older ones took a bit longer to believe they could truly say what they think. In the end, the meeting needed two sessions because there was so much to talk about… and so many things people didn't realize were a big deal to the others. Your lessons and encouragement have given us the tools we need to get to a better place in our relationships and our business. Truly thankful.”
Kim Martin, Dairy Farmer, Ontario
“Helped me develop my framework to start having constructive and meaningful conversations around the farm.”
Tennille Wakefield, Farm Partner
“Some great lessons, Elaine! You continue to do some remarkable and potentially life-changing work.”
James Mitchell, Principal, Conversations Consulting
“Our family had a good farm meeting yesterday afternoon. Your Fairness video was a great topic of discussion. One of the action items after the meeting was to have my two non-farming siblings watch the video before the next big meeting they are involved with on the farm. It will be a great conversation starter as we catch them up on our current plan. As they are younger, we also hope it will help them to ask new questions that may not have been on their mind.”
G.G., Farm Family Legacy Coach, Alberta
“Elaine gives me excellent tools that help me work with my clients!”
Laurianne Osmack, Financial Planner / Partner, Doell Osmak Wealth Management
“She has a sense of “knowing” quickly what is happening in the family dynamic. Her messages to her audiences drive home what needs to be done next to solve the complex issues of farm transition and conflict resolution.”
Audience Member,
“Eye-opening. Excited to open the door of communication with my spouse and farm family.”
Ashley Hoppe, Farm Partner
“The Strong Farms, Strong Families session gave farm families an opportunity to meet face to face with Elaine Froese... hear her own story, experiences and skill set. From this information packed session and related materials, families could identify areas of success in their journey and other places they need assistance. The greatest take away was that participants could see that Elaine Froese is someone they can trust with the things that they hold most precious.... their family and their farm.”
Nancy Atkinson, Nobleford Ag Society, Alberta
“Elaine’s real-life scenarios help her audiences know they are not alone, knowing there are creative solutions to help them get the life on the farm they have always wanted.”
Audience Member,
“A long time female client who had refined the art of procrastination was so moved by the end of your presentation that she accepted your permission to “drop the bananas.” She contacted me soon after for an appointment to do some planning which included the selling of the family “Century Farm.” A very, very emotional decision on her part that was not likely to have occurred without your presentation.”
Don Forbes, Forbes Wealthy Management
“I just have to say… that your work is amazing and I have never forgotten your teachings from our session in Williams Lake at TRU. It is super important work. I know so many people going through the trauma of succession. I hate to use that word, but I was an “out-law” and know it can get terrible. I continue to forward your emails on to others. Keep doing what you do! You are amazing. You kind of walk into the fire regularly… and with a smile. Proud to have met you.”
Megan, BC Rancher
“As my husband and I eagerly started the course we were optimistic and excited to be taking this next step in our Farm Transition. We were starting to question ourselves and whether or not we were just being selfish and greedy, and if this Farm Transition was still an option for us. We barely got through the first Module and were already having such a huge relief. As we moved through the modulus there were so many times that we just sat back with our hands in the air and thought YES. My husband and I would smile with relief because all of the concerns that we have been struggling with were relevant and came up in the modules. We really enjoyed the course and are excited to move on to the next stages to find our farm resolution.”
Shannon Gilchrist, “Get Farm Transition Unstuck” online course participant
“My hubby farms with 2 brothers and parents, and it’s become a really toxic place. No communication, no respect, etc. Twelve months ago, my husband’s brothers told him they don’t want to work with him anymore and offered him a pay out. His parents did nothing to stop it! He had no choice but to leave. Three months later, we moved off the farm and into town. He has been offered heaps of jobs and is now truck driving and carting hay and grain. We have tried communicating with his parents about what happened but they are not interested. So basically my hubby has lost his family. Very sad but we as husband and wife are overall in a good place and moving on to create our own life. Please continue on with all your wonderful work in helping families on the farm. I continue to tell any farmers I know about you, that they must ‘google’ you, and read your books.”
Donna, Farmer, Australia

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+1-204-534-7466 | elaine(at)elainefroese.com

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