MANY of us struggle with the idea of putting ourselves first.

Looking after others is almost easier; we understand our responsibility and if you’re busy with life, looking after yourself can become an afterthought.

Taking care of yourself is not selfish, though.

Indeed, it is the complete opposite.

It strengthens us and enables us to support our loved ones better.

Sometimes, when we’re feeling stressed and running around taking care of everybody else, the best thing we can do is to stop for a minute and consider how we can take care of ourselves.

We really are no use to anyone if our energy is depleted, or if through tiredness and lack of concentration we have a life changing accident.

And accidents are sadly something we are all too familiar with as farmers.

I find it frightening that you are now six times more likely to be killed on a farm than you would on a building site!

That of course is not right and we have to address the issue - each and everyone of us, on our own farms.

We all know what the risks are and we know how to manage them.

We know that we should turn the tractor off before we jump out to take the plastic of that bale we’re moving on the forks.

We know that we should wear a helmet when we’re out and about on the quad. But despite all that ‘knowing’ we put ourselves in situations where one slip can have life changing or even fatal consequences.

Over the last year, six people died in Wales.

That’s six families who went through life-changing trauma and many more will have been affected by the tragedies.

Not looking after ourselves and our safety can have serious consequences and I don’t want anybody to go through this.

I therefore urge you - think about what you’re doing before you do it. Follow the advice, wear that helmet and make the promise to your family and yourself that you will come home at the end of the day and that you will take as much care of yourself as you do of them.



Farmers' Union of Wales