Ag producers’ stress management is the focus of two September workshops in Dodge City and Manhattan.
Stress levels continue to climb in agriculture: Several years of low commodity prices, slipping farmland values and potential trade disruptions take a toll not only on balance sheets but farmers’ well being.
To help farmers, family members and others manage stress, K-State Research and Extension is hosting two one-day workshops.
North Dakota State University extension specialist Sean Brotherson will present “Managing Stress and Pursuing Wellness in Times of Tight Margins” on Thursday, September 20, at the Western State Bank Expo Center, 11333 US-283, in Dodge City. Lunch will be provided.
The next day, Friday, September 21, Brotherson will present the workshop in Manhattan at Kansas Farm Bureau, 2627 KFB Plaza. Lunch will be provided.
“You don’t have to be a farmer to benefit from this workshop,” said Debra Bolton, K-State human ecology extension specialist based in Garden City. “All are welcome, including farm family members, businesses, and anyone who wants to learn about managing stress.”
Each workshop day begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m. The cost of the workshop is $20, which covers meals and materials.
We have all dealt with a spouse, friend, child or co-worker who has a behavior or attitude that drives you crazy. Sometimes these behaviors and attitudes break policy or laws while other times they just bring negativity into the environment. Simply ignoring these annoyances is not the answer, especially if they reoccur on a regular basis. Addressing differences can be stressful, but not addressing them can result in unproductive work environments, strained relationships, and many bad moods.
How you address behaviors and attitudes that ‘push your buttons’ is very important in gaining the outcomes you desire. Blaming language brings out defense mechanisms, often steering the conversation away from the concern. Avoid using the word “you”. “You” statements accuse actions, ideas, and people to be in the wrong. Blaming language not only takes longer to reach a resolution, it rarely makes a relationship stronger through the process.
Instead, use “I” statements. “I” statements keep your responses focused on how the concern affects you. Meanwhile, the other party will feel invited to explain how they are affected by the concern. “I” statements seek to understand and respect both party’s opinions and experiences. These types of conversations may provide values clarification, likely pointing towards a compromise that will benefit everyone.
Communicate with “I” Statements
I feel: (label your feeling: betrayed, proud, anxious, vulnerable, etc…), When: (give specific example) _ . Because: (briefly explain ‘why’) . What I want/need is: (describe what would make you feel better) .
We rarely think about our communication with loved ones. However, family communication is very important and determines our relationships with each other, setting the tone for family life. Family communication is not simple. It has many parts. Communication is more than what we say and do. Our messages depend on how we think the other person will react, so we communicate differently with individual members of the family. Each of us has several different communication patterns that develop over time. It depends on who is communicating.
K-State Research and Extension’s, Essential Living Skills: Basic Family Communication is a curriculum that guides participants toward improving everyday communication in their families. This educational program emphasizes skill-building and mindful communication techniques for improving family communication and interaction.
To access the curriculum, visit https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/pubs/S134E.pdf. For assistance, using the curriculum to improve your own family communication, and/or to explore ways you might be able to effectively use the curriculum as a teaching tool in a learning environment, contact Nora Rhoades, Family and Youth Development Agent in the Post Rock District.
Join the Post Rock Extension District at the Lebanon Community Library for Family Fun Night! Through playful learning activities, each child and adult will grow and learn together. Activities will be focused on young children ages 0-5 years; however, all children are welcome. Each child must be accompanied by a caring adult throughout the entire program. Questions? Contact the Lebanon Community Library at 785-389-5711. To learn more about this and other upcoming experiences, check out our website at http://www.postrock.k-state.edu/events/.
Everybody experiences both good and bad stress, and we need strategies to cope and manage it in our daily lives.
Nora Rhoades, Post Rock District Family and Youth Development Agent, is featured on Nex-Tech’s Extension Ed Talks discussing stress management. She provides insight about what stress is and how it influences us both positively and negatively. Nora shares practical strategies to improve your wellness through positive stress management. You can also learn about stress management through the K-State Research and Extension resource, Keys to Embracing Aging: Stress Management.
Join us for The Key to Farming SUCCESSion Conference on March 20th from 10:00AM-4:00PM. The conference will feature keynote speaker, Roger McEowen! Featured breakout session topics include: Advanced Health Care Planning; Where Do I Start?; Preparing for the What If; Estate Planning 101; New Tax Laws; and Navigating Family Differences. Attendees will leave with new knowledge and strategies to grow their business and secure farm assets for future generations to come.
Nora Rhoades, Post Rock District Family and Youth Development Agent, is featured on Nex-Tech’s Extension Ed Talks. She provides insight about coping with tragedy in a world surrounded by a wide variety of technology and digital communication strategies.
Brainy Babies in an interactive child + parent story hour for children birth through age 3. Through playful learning activities, each child and adult will grow and learn together. The interactive series encourages and stimulates learning while enhancing the relationship between adult and child. Brainy Babies programs are scheduled to take place at the Public Libraries in Kensington and Mankato this winter. The Post Rock District is also involved with the Sprouts 0-3 program at the Osborne Public Library. For complete details about Brainy Babies visit http://www.postrock.k-state.edu/events/.
Mankato Public Library
Tuesdays: January 9, 16, 23 & 30
Kensington Community Library
3rd Monday: January 15, February 19 & March 19
The mission of the Better Brains for Babies initiative is to improve the potential of young children by promoting the use of early brain development research in everyday life experiences. Better Brains for Babies is a collaboration of national, state and local, public and private organizations dedicated to promoting awareness and education about the importance of early brain development in the healthy growth and development of infants and young children. The initiative began in Georgia, and has become available to Kansas professionals through a partnership between University of Georgia Extension and K-State Research and Extension.
Train-the-trainer participants will learn about brain development, adult-child interactions, toxic stress, and other elements of young child development. After completing the training, attendees will be eligible to disseminate information on early brain development throughout their communities. The Better Brains for Babies curriculum is a tool which provides a clear and consistent science-based message about the impact of early brain development on children’s overall growth and development.