Homesteaders are some of the hardest working people you could ever know. Learning all the skills it takes to live as much off the land as we can takes a ton of hard work and dedication. There’s no real way to separate homestead management from this lifestyle.
The success of your homestead will stand or fall without homestead management. It is the most important component of one’s homesteading journey, in my opinion. Without proper management, no endeavor sees success, and your homestead is destined to suck. I have a worksheet at the bottom of this post that can help you begin to properly manage your homestead simply and easily.
It’s just like anything that you would want to do well. You set goals, make plans, and carry out those plans to completion. That is when you have achieved success in meeting your goals.
Meeting goals is a great way to feed future goals. The more we meet homesteading goals by learning skills that will help us to live off our land better, the more we are able to meet our next goals. It’s a wonderful cycle.
However, if we are in the habit of flying by the seat of our homesteading overalls, it’s a good chance nothing will really get done that’s not right in front of us. We will be destined to slavery to what looks like the most pressing issue each day, leaving us utterly exhausted at bedtime, only to get up and do the same the next day.
You Need to Have a Plan
In order to stop this awful cycle of working and working and getting nothing really done, we need to make a plan. You may feel too busy to plan anything extra into your days. You may feel too tired to try to add anything to your plate. However, there’s something magical about goal setting and achieving that can energize even the most worn out homesteader to soldier on.
Just like with anything, we have to consider the “why” of what we are doing. Think of what is most important to you on your homesteading journey. Do you need to feed your family with a garden? Livestock? Do you want to eventually be off-grid? Do you want to prepare for disaster? Or is it that you just love the simple life of living on a farm, connecting with the land and nature? It doesn’t matter what it is, just write down your “why” in a notebook or a piece of paper.
With your “why” in mind, think about what sorts of homesteading skills will support your reason for wanting to homestead. If you want to live off the land, perhaps the skills you’ll choose will be gardening and raising chickens. Those are great starting points and not too difficult to learn.
We also need to consider how we are going to accomplish our goals.
If you are a worksheet person, I have a great one that will help you get some goals on paper and break them down into bite-sized chunks. It’s in my resource library, and you can get the password for that at the bottom of my post.
Whatever the reason you are on this homesteading journey, you will need a plan. There is no way you will be able to make your homestead dreams come true without a well-mapped plan to get there.
You Need to Follow Through
Once you know what your goals are, you’ll need to have a plan to follow through. Following through is a discipline of the utmost worth. It’s the thing that can make or break our success in any area of your life, so you don’t want to miss this part.
So how do you make it possible to follow through with learning those skills you listed above? Take one of the skills that you would like to learn and write down all of the tasks that are necessary to make that goal come to pass.
Next, put them in order of importance. Likely there will be things on your list that need to be done before some of the others. If one of your goals is to raise your own chickens for eggs, you will first need to do some research. Next, you will need a chicken coop built, and after that you’ll need to bring chicks home and raise them to the age they start producing eggs, and beyond.
Do It Like You Mean It
See what I mean about putting your list in order? Once you’ve done that, next you’ll need to pencil all of those things into your calendar. When “research day” comes around, do that research. When chicken coop building day is coming up, make sure you’ve got all you need for that project, and then actually do it. In no time, your “raising chickens for eggs” goal is complete, and you’ve achieved an important piece of your homestead!
You Need to Be Consistent
Consistency is key. With anything. It just is.
It will be for your homestead as well. The more consistent you are with setting, carrying out, and achieving your goals, the better off your homestead will be. In turn, the better off you will be, because you will be consistently working toward the kind of life you want to be living.