As the country experiences its fifth bank holiday weekend of the year, farmers continue to work tirelessly to ensure that livestock and crops are well looked after to produce high-quality food for the Irish and world market. While most people are enjoying the long weekend, farmers are thinking about the jobs that need to be done.
Farmers have an incredibly important job, and taking time off and getting away from the farm is something that most of them don’t do enough. Although getting away from the farm for a few days for many almost feels like more stress than it is worth, it is important for mental well-being to take a break and get away from the farm.
As we move into the summer months and hopefully see an improvement in the weather, farmers should begin planning to take some time away from their farm. Although the beginning of summer on most farms is busy with the harvesting of silage and breeding of cows, it does tend to quieten down later on, giving many people a chance to get away for a few days.
One option that helps dairy farmers free up short amounts of time to get away may be to increase the number of milkings they don’t take part in. For some farmers, decreasing the number of milkings they don’t do themselves can have a major benefit. It can free up more time to spend with family and friends or to get other jobs done, which in turn can free up more time elsewhere.
There are 14 milkings/week on most dairy farms, and outsourcing just two to four of these milkings can create a lot of free time. It will also allow you to make plans and not have to worry or rush about getting finished on time or getting back in. This free time could be spent on a myriad of ways, such as attending sporting events or pursuing other hobbies.
It is not just dairy farmers who can benefit from outsourcing work. Beef farmers can also benefit from hiring relief milkers or relief feeders to free up time. This can help them to take a break and get away from the farm for a few days.
In addition to outsourcing work, farmers can also consider joining farming organizations or clubs that offer support and advice. These organizations can help farmers to connect with others who are facing similar challenges and offer advice on how to take time off and get away from the farm.
Taking time off and getting away from the farm is important for mental well-being, but it is also important for physical health. Farmers who take time off and get away from the farm are less likely to suffer from burnout and other health problems associated with long hours and stressful work.
In conclusion, while farmers have an incredibly important job, it is important for them to take time off and get away from the farm. Outsourcing work and joining farming organizations or clubs can help farmers to free up time and connect with others who are facing similar challenges. Taking time off and getting away from the farm is not just important for mental well-being but also for physical health.