Go Smell a Hay Bale


Yes, you read that title right. Hang with me, it’ll make LOADS of sense, I promise!

I won’t lie to you: the past week (or maybe even two weeks?) my inspiration and drive have been lacking in a big way. To be honest, this is the first time that this has happened since I started this business. The Farm Story was born out of pure love, fire, passion, and drive to change the world. For the last six months, the thought that God put me on this earth to help tell the story of the agricultural industry and to create community within it has made me jump out of bed (most) mornings. ;) (Again, I won’t lie, I’m not much of a morning person…but this DEFINITELY made it easier than it used to be!)

Towards the end of this past week, my already full plate got ANOTHER huge thing added to it. Feelings of anxiety, burnout, overwhelm, self-doubt, and “WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING?!!?!??!?!” flooded my mind for a solid 48 hours. I even began to doubt starting this business, if I was smart enough to do it, if I could handle ALL THE THINGS, and began to question why God put all this on my heart. Not a good situation, ya feel me?

In past years, these feelings would bring all positive thoughts to a halt. I would believe all these lies, drive myself into the ground, and ultimately be completely derailed from progress I was making toward any given goal. I felt myself falling back into this pattern towards the end of last week, and it scared me. I knew this BIG dream of mine had been put on my heart by God Himself, and I felt as though I was letting it slip away right before my eyes. Just like a stick floating away in the flooded rivers of Nebraska and the Midwest.

However, the past year has been FULL of self development. Ya know, the REALLY hard stuff. Self-help books, podcasts, work to identify and squash the lies in my head, eliminating toxic garbage out of my life, the scary “T” word (therapy) and more. I won’t go into detail here, that’s for another day. But just know that this time, I was able to pull myself up, smack myself across the face (figuratively, of course) and use this weekend to recharge my batteries.

I’ve learned that recharging batteries looks different for everyone, but that it is SOOOOOO IMPORTANT. So, I filled my wonderful weekend with some of the people who mean the most to me, good food and drinks, time in the sunshine, playing with my dog, dreaming, smelling hay bales, focusing on the positives, and MOST importantly…time with God. As hard as it is to admit, that last one isn’t always the first thing I try. But, I’M GETTING BETTER, YOU GUYS!!

On Sundays, I try to take a walk in the field behind our house and listen to a sermon *cue “My Church” by Maren Morris* :) and as I was walking back up to the house, Delilah didn’t want to stop swimming in the pond (if you watch my Instagram stories, you get it…!) So I stood near the pond to wait for my golden girl to get her fill of pond water, and I went to lean up against a round bale. Instantly, my nose was filled with the glorious smell of hay and I couldn’t get enough. For me, hay smells like “home” and is one of my favorite OF ALL THE FARM SMELLS. So here I was, standing in a field, sticking my nose in a bale of hay while my dog swam nearby in the pond. All while the last bit of a sermon was playing in my ears. It was in this moment that I felt the last of my “almost full battery” recharge fully and the thoughts of “I’M GONNA DO THE DAMN THING!!” returned to my head.

To some, I might sound completely nuts. But to others, I think I make complete sense. If you’re struggling to find inspiration, motivation, or just need to remember why you’re doing what you’re doing…you can likely find part of it back in the very place where you began. For me, several things helped me this weekend. But sticking my nose in a hay bale sealed the deal and brought me back to where I needed to be to tackle the week ahead. I’ve learned to never underestimate the power of simple parts of farm life that we can all sometimes take for granted.

If you need something to start your week off right, drop what you’re doing and find the nearest hay bale. It’ll help, promise!

Happy Sunday, friends!

Until next time,

Caroline