Two views, one team

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Six weeks into the new year and I have voted in an election, attended two annual meetings and participated in one conflict resolution seminar. The more involved I strive to become, the further I get from my resolution of peaceful co-existence.

As I filed "important" newspaper articles, it seems that the more committed people are, the more likely there will be friction. The size of the budget or the number of decision-makers doesn't ease the process. This is true whether you're city based or on the farm.

Many of us are slipping further away from our purely agrarian roots. But regardless of the big-city worldliness that we bring to our daily lives, there is much to build on from the successful farm model.

Successful farming isn't determined by one or two years of good crops and livestock prices. It's about using the good years to overcome the bad in order to maintain a way of life. It takes consistency over the long run to be successful. You plant the seeds, struggle through the growing season and if you're lucky you're rewarded with a beautiful harvest. Some years it hardly seems worth the effort. But, at the very least, you have prepared the way for next season's crop.

The "doing" is key. You can't milk cows only when they're all contented. You MUST make hay while the sun shines! Even when you feel hard done by, withdrawing from the agreement is not an option.

Some days farmers are working at a serious disadvantage: equipment malfunctions, bad weather, a shortage of money, labour or resources. There is only one option. Get on with it. While you're laying blame or waiting for someone else to find a solution, the problem - and the farm - may both go away.

On the farm, your perspective changes often. One day you're mucking out manure, the next you're in sunshine breaking new ground. It's the change that brings enlightenment; solutions are reached when you can look at the problem from a different angle.

On the farm, cultivation is important. Whether it's land that cannot be productive without being uprooted every year or new ground that needs nurturing back to health, farming often means continuous review and implementation. Crops don't grow because of a plan, a unanimous motion or an election. It takes teamwork from concept to completion. However, teamwork isn't just allies in the meeting or sharing the same agenda or having the loudest voice in the discussion. Teamwork is pulling together...in the SAME direction. Fighting over the perfect plan, strategy, vision - or leader - is counterproductive. Get together! Get to work.

On the farm or in the city, we need to be more concerned about action plans than finger pointing. We need to find where we agree and can take the first step forward rather than highlight our differences and take two steps back! When the going gets tough, it's the relationship that will help us weather through the difficult decisions and conflicts. At the end of the day our quality of life and what we leave to the next generation will depend not on whom we fought against but whom we worked beside. Go farmers! Go Hamilton!

Karen Hunt is a Troy resident, a wife, a mother, a writer and associate member of the Rockton Agricultural Society.

Two views, one team

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Six weeks into the new year and I have voted in an election, attended two annual meetings and participated in one conflict resolution seminar. The more involved I strive to become, the further I get from my resolution of peaceful co-existence.

As I filed "important" newspaper articles, it seems that the more committed people are, the more likely there will be friction. The size of the budget or the number of decision-makers doesn't ease the process. This is true whether you're city based or on the farm.

Many of us are slipping further away from our purely agrarian roots. But regardless of the big-city worldliness that we bring to our daily lives, there is much to build on from the successful farm model.

Successful farming isn't determined by one or two years of good crops and livestock prices. It's about using the good years to overcome the bad in order to maintain a way of life. It takes consistency over the long run to be successful. You plant the seeds, struggle through the growing season and if you're lucky you're rewarded with a beautiful harvest. Some years it hardly seems worth the effort. But, at the very least, you have prepared the way for next season's crop.

The "doing" is key. You can't milk cows only when they're all contented. You MUST make hay while the sun shines! Even when you feel hard done by, withdrawing from the agreement is not an option.

Some days farmers are working at a serious disadvantage: equipment malfunctions, bad weather, a shortage of money, labour or resources. There is only one option. Get on with it. While you're laying blame or waiting for someone else to find a solution, the problem - and the farm - may both go away.

On the farm, your perspective changes often. One day you're mucking out manure, the next you're in sunshine breaking new ground. It's the change that brings enlightenment; solutions are reached when you can look at the problem from a different angle.

On the farm, cultivation is important. Whether it's land that cannot be productive without being uprooted every year or new ground that needs nurturing back to health, farming often means continuous review and implementation. Crops don't grow because of a plan, a unanimous motion or an election. It takes teamwork from concept to completion. However, teamwork isn't just allies in the meeting or sharing the same agenda or having the loudest voice in the discussion. Teamwork is pulling together...in the SAME direction. Fighting over the perfect plan, strategy, vision - or leader - is counterproductive. Get together! Get to work.

On the farm or in the city, we need to be more concerned about action plans than finger pointing. We need to find where we agree and can take the first step forward rather than highlight our differences and take two steps back! When the going gets tough, it's the relationship that will help us weather through the difficult decisions and conflicts. At the end of the day our quality of life and what we leave to the next generation will depend not on whom we fought against but whom we worked beside. Go farmers! Go Hamilton!

Karen Hunt is a Troy resident, a wife, a mother, a writer and associate member of the Rockton Agricultural Society.

Two views, one team

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

Six weeks into the new year and I have voted in an election, attended two annual meetings and participated in one conflict resolution seminar. The more involved I strive to become, the further I get from my resolution of peaceful co-existence.

As I filed "important" newspaper articles, it seems that the more committed people are, the more likely there will be friction. The size of the budget or the number of decision-makers doesn't ease the process. This is true whether you're city based or on the farm.

Many of us are slipping further away from our purely agrarian roots. But regardless of the big-city worldliness that we bring to our daily lives, there is much to build on from the successful farm model.

Successful farming isn't determined by one or two years of good crops and livestock prices. It's about using the good years to overcome the bad in order to maintain a way of life. It takes consistency over the long run to be successful. You plant the seeds, struggle through the growing season and if you're lucky you're rewarded with a beautiful harvest. Some years it hardly seems worth the effort. But, at the very least, you have prepared the way for next season's crop.

The "doing" is key. You can't milk cows only when they're all contented. You MUST make hay while the sun shines! Even when you feel hard done by, withdrawing from the agreement is not an option.

Some days farmers are working at a serious disadvantage: equipment malfunctions, bad weather, a shortage of money, labour or resources. There is only one option. Get on with it. While you're laying blame or waiting for someone else to find a solution, the problem - and the farm - may both go away.

On the farm, your perspective changes often. One day you're mucking out manure, the next you're in sunshine breaking new ground. It's the change that brings enlightenment; solutions are reached when you can look at the problem from a different angle.

On the farm, cultivation is important. Whether it's land that cannot be productive without being uprooted every year or new ground that needs nurturing back to health, farming often means continuous review and implementation. Crops don't grow because of a plan, a unanimous motion or an election. It takes teamwork from concept to completion. However, teamwork isn't just allies in the meeting or sharing the same agenda or having the loudest voice in the discussion. Teamwork is pulling together...in the SAME direction. Fighting over the perfect plan, strategy, vision - or leader - is counterproductive. Get together! Get to work.

On the farm or in the city, we need to be more concerned about action plans than finger pointing. We need to find where we agree and can take the first step forward rather than highlight our differences and take two steps back! When the going gets tough, it's the relationship that will help us weather through the difficult decisions and conflicts. At the end of the day our quality of life and what we leave to the next generation will depend not on whom we fought against but whom we worked beside. Go farmers! Go Hamilton!

Karen Hunt is a Troy resident, a wife, a mother, a writer and associate member of the Rockton Agricultural Society.