Amanda Cook on Rural Mental Health
Amanda Cook, Promotion and Education Committee Chair
Farm life is challenging, even in the best of times. Let’s face it, the past couple of years have been hard on us all. Uncertainty has been a constant theme in our lives and there has been a lot of isolation and separation from what was once normal. It’s okay to feel the weight and as we approach Spring, there’s no better time than now to do a mental health check-in. A change in season is a great time to step back, reflect, and look at the big picture.
Check in on your friends and neighbors, especially if you haven’t seen them in a while. Lend an ear or hand, and know the signs of a change in mental health:
- Change in routines or social activities
- Decline in the care of domestic animals
- Increase in illness or other chronic conditions
- Increase in farm accidents
- Decline in appearance of the farmstead
- Decreased interest in activities or events
- Signs of stress in children including struggles with school
Most importantly, check in on yourself. Make sure you are taking time to take care of you, even if it is difficult. If you don’t feel like yourself lately or are having a hard time finding the motivation to keep going, know your Farm Bureau Family is here for you. We are stronger together, and we are here to help and connect you with what you need to keep your mental health in check.
For more resources like this on mental health, check AFBF’s Farm state of mind website: https://www.fb.org/land/fsom
-Amanda Cook, P&E Committee