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Spring is exciting but can also produce anxiety about the unknown.

Darren Frye, CEO

March 6, 2023

3 Min Read
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Early spring is a time of excitement on the farm as preparations for planting continue from the winter and also intensify. As temperatures begin to start warming, so does the level of enthusiasm and excitement of those on the farm.

There are definitely those types of positive feelings happening on the farm in the springtime – but there’s also another less-talked-about feeling around: uncertainty. Going into the spring, there can be a great deal of uncertainty around many aspects.

Springtime mindset

Some of the questions in farm leaders’ minds are: What will the weather be like? Will the crop get in the ground in a timely manner? What will the markets do? How will our farm team navigate the changing season and any curveballs?

There’s a difference between acknowledging the fact that, yes, there are many unknowns about the upcoming crop year versus having anxiety develop about those unknowns. The first approach allows farm leaders to clearly separate what they can personally control from what they cannot. Then, the leaders can choose to work on the aspects that are within their control, and to let go of the ones that aren’t.

3 questions

To help work through that approach and take it further, here are three questions to ask yourself.

  1. What are my top concerns about the 2023 crop year? Rather than your concerns repeating in your mind, take the opportunity to sit down and list them out. Sometimes simply seeing what you’re concerned about written out on paper is the first step to developing a plan for how you’ll deal with it. Once you’ve done that, consider which of the concerns (or aspects of them) are within your direct control – and which are not. Separate them on your paper.

  2. What can I have the greatest impact on – that has the biggest impact on my farm? Of the concerns you identified that you do have control over, which one or ones have the biggest impact on the success of your farm operation? Choose the top one or two where you can take action and work to make an improvement – even a 1% improvement counts! In fact, that’s where the biggest and most successful changes often start, with small incremental improvements that add up over time.

  3. Where am I going to take action first? One of the most empowering things you can do when feeling uncertain about the upcoming season is to take action on one of the improvements you identified. Take note of any results you see from that project, no matter how small they may seem. Then take the next step toward improvement, and the next. Soon you’ll be able to recognize additional results that will help springboard you further into other projects!

2023 markets

Have you set up marketing goals for 2023? Now is the right time to be creating marketing plans for this year and beyond. A market advisor can help with providing education, marketing tools, and market planning for your unique operation and your future goals.

Farmers have found that getting some third-party perspective from our market advisors has helped ease their minds. The advisors help farmer clients with planning and execution around marketing decisions and help keep them up to speed on the current rapidly-changing grain market situation – and how it impacts their operation.

Get a free two-week trial of our marketing information service (MarketView Basic). Your free trial includes regular audio and video updates, technical analysis, recommendations and more. Learn more about our market advisor programs and offerings at

About the Author(s)

Darren Frye

CEO, Water Street Solutions

Darren Frye grew up on an innovative, integrated Illinois farm. He began trading commodities in 1982 and started his first business in 1987, specializing in fertilizer distribution and crop consulting. In 1994 he started a consulting business, Water Street Solutions to help Midwest farmers become more successful through financial analysis, crop insurance, marketing consulting and legacy planning. The mission of Finance First is to get you to look at spreadsheets and see opportunity, to see your business for what it can be, and to help you build your agricultural legacy.

Visit Water Street Solutions

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