If, heading into 2018, you made resolutions for the new year, I hope that at this point in January you’re still keeping them— or at least most of them. A few of them, maybe? I know some folks who list goals for a new year rather than make resolutions. They say it’s more practical to do that, adding that goals are less rigid than resolutions and more achievable. There might be something to that.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac (almanac.com) tells us that the New Year’s resolution tradition actually goes back to ancient times. “The new year is a natural time to reflect and resolve to change or improve how we live our lives,” an online Almanac article states. A typical resolution by the Babylonians more than 4,000 years ago was to return borrowed farm equipment.
Offering advice to would-be resolution-makers in mid-December, the Almanac coached that resolutions should be simple, limited in number, specific, measurable, and (importantly) doable— much like annual goals for any business or organization.
For farmers, the resolution options have few bounds, and it’s not too late to list them or fine-tune the ones you’ve already made. (You won’t have trouble getting a Mulligan for January from me.) Good ideas, if you need them, can be found at several online venues, including agriculture.com, thatsfarming.com, capitalpress.com (search for FloridaAgNews.com “resolutions”), cropinsurancesolutions.com, and alltech.com.
A particularly interesting list of resolutions for farmers, a top10 doable list, can be found here. Without the detail, the list goes like this:
1. Support the farming community.
2. Embrace technology/innovation.
3. Evaluate the future.
4. Set aside downtime.
5. Attend farm shows.
6. Engage with the general public.
7. Increase the commitment to safety.
8. Try something new.
9. Become an “agvocate.”
10. Be active on social media.
Even for nonfarmers, for folks not directly involved with agriculture, there’s an item here that would look good on everyone’s list of resolutions, and that would be No. 1— Support the farming community. Local farmers need that support— your love, your attention, your prayers, and your purchases. Buy local. Buy “Fresh From Florida“.
by BAXTER TROUTMAN
This column is sponsored by Labor Solutions.
BIO: Baxter Troutman is the founder and chief executive officer of Labor Solutions, a staffing company with offices in Bartow, Winter Haven, Lake Wales, and Arcadia. He also currently serves as president of the Florida AgriTourism Association board of directors. You can visit his Dark Hammock Legacy Ranch online at www.DH-LR.com. A cattle rancher and citrus grower who served in the Florida House of Representatives, Troutman understands the challenges and concerns of today’s farmer.