12 Tools for Your Wellness Toolbox in Times of Farm Stress

(FS1866 Reviewed Dec. 2022)

Individuals in farming can experience stress from multiple sources. Stresses can be managed as individuals use practical wellness strategies to reduce stress and improve wellness.

Lead Author
Lead Author:
Sean Brotherson, Ph.D., Family Science Specialist
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  1. Exercise 20 minutes or more daily (walk, swim, ride a bike, etc.). Physical activity enhances feeling good.
  2. Get a medical checkup with a local health-care provider. Stress can cause or add to physical challenges.


  1. Spend 10 minutes to plan your day and priorities. A few minutes of planning reduces stress and helps you stay focused.
  2. Take regular five- to 10-minute breaks in your day to relax and recharge. Doing this multiple times a day renews your energy.


  1. Write down three things that you are grateful for daily. Conscious gratitude calms your mood.
  2. Share concerns with a counselor or other professional. A listening ear helps lift your burdens.


  1. Take 15 minutes each day for uninterrupted conversation with a spouse or family member. A few minutes of planning reduces stress and helps you stay focused.
  2. Get involved or stay connected with a friend or group of friends. Doing this multiple times a day renews your energy.


  1. Discuss needs of the farm operation but do not let them occupy all other aspects of life. Plan other daily work tasks to shift your focus.
  2. Seek constructive feedback on your farm operation and ways to grow or improve. Others can share ideas or assist in new ways.


  1. Create a family budget and seek to live within your means. This helps give you a sense of financial control.
  2. Select three healthy habits you will try to practice daily. Start today!

My Wellness Commitment

Circle or list at least three wellness tools you can begin doing today and post this in your home, office or vehicle as a reminder.


For more information on wellness tools and farm stress, visit our NDSU Extension website at www.ag.ndsu.edu/drought/stress-resources


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