Farmer urges others not to overdo it this planting season

A Kansas farmer who has learned to deal with stress says when it’s time for the planters to roll, don’t stay in the tractor too long.

Lowell Neitzel

Lowell Neitzel raises corn and soybeans with his wife and her father and brothers near Lawrence, Kansas, west of Kansas City.  He says, “Your mind gets numb and you’ve got to get out, and it’s okay to reset yourself.”

He tells Brownfield farmers often put themselves in danger or make too many mental mistakes if they keep going when tired. “We have pretty good equipment and so we just buckle down and go, but you know, it’s one of those things that you’ve got to take into account. You’ve got to be in the right mindset and be okay to quit early if you’ve got to quit early, and it’s one of those things I’ve had to learn the hard way.”

Neitzel says the work-life balance is important, and along with getting rest, farmers need to make time for their families. “So what if you don’t get that extra 20 or 30 acres done in a day, but your going to go spend time with your kid and your wife. You’ve got to take those little things more seriously and just appreciate the little things in life.”

Neitzel spoke to Brownfield after a recent farmer panel discussion on mental health at the recent Wisconsin Corn-Soy-Pork Expo.

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