Inevitably there will be situations that happen in life that require some real soul searching.
These life events can be good or bad. The bad ones tend to bring things into perspective.
Things will happen that are uncontrollable, except for the reaction to them. And how these situations are handled will inform reactions to future events.
This comes within the remit of personal growth and we are all on different journeys in that regard.
As the classic line from the Pirates of the Caribbean movie goes, "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem."
In a farming context, the classic example is the "potential" high yielding crop that is cruelled by a frost event, or some other natural weather event.
In agriculture, we all understand we are subject to the vagaries of the weather and commodity price fluctuations, but it's quite natural to ponder on what could have been.
These types of events are par for the course in agriculture, and the business will generally survive to live another day. This is one of the reasons lending to agricultural businesses is so conservative in nature. Having a strong and flexible balance sheet is imperative for when things get tough.
Other life events, such as loss of a loved one, are often more traumatic. Any loss is hard to come to grips with, whether it be sudden or expected.
We all have examples of the loss of young people in the country that have affected the community in a large way.
I still vividly remember this happening in my farming community in 1992. It's a long time ago now, but the memory is seared into my consciousness, and that of others who were there at the time.
In relation to loss of life, the short-term pain can't be mitigated, especially when it's a key member of the business operation. But some of the long-term ramifications can be reduced with some prior planning.
This is where proper estate planning can be a godsend.
An up-to-date will, and possible life insurance proceeds can reduce financial pressures, and minimise the uncertainty for the farming family.
This is particularly so if there are on-farm and off-farm members of the family who all have an interest in the business.
I know a number of people who purposely work on their self-awareness and try to get to the bottom of why they react to certain things the way they do.
This journey can be quite rewarding, while also rather challenging. It can be difficult to work on past issues that are buried in the subconscious; but the rewards are worth the effort.
Thankfully it's much more acceptable these days to be vulnerable and let people know how about any feelings and what's going on. This is where good, non-judgmental friends are key.
Everyone needs someone to talk to. We all need other people around us that support and encourage us. Choose wisely.
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