Q&A: Drought Juggle

Juggling the drought.

Dear ABDI,

We’ve been trying to grow this business for several years now, which has required a lot of blood sweat and tears. The same as everyone else, we are dealing with drought right now, and it threatens to undo all our hard work.

I’m feeling extremely overwhelmed by all this. I feel we’re each juggling all of these balls, and while we’re all extremely busy, I can’t help but feel I can never get anything ‘important’ done. It’s tough on me and my husband’s relationship, as well as with the rest of the family, and I’m worried things might start breaking down around me.

Just wondering if you have any tips or strategies for this?

– Overwhelmed

Dear Overwhelmed,

Firstly, we have to commend you for asking for help. This is often the hardest part – just admitting something isn’t right, and having the courage to take that first step – which is often the hardest.

Secondly, when too much is going on, something has to give. The key question is, what’s most important? You must be clear on what your priorities are. Questions to ask yourself are: “What are my most important tasks right now?”, and “Where can I add the most value to the business by using my best skills and abilities?”

Here are two ways of tackling this:

  • If there is too much going on, what can we outsource? While money may be the issue (or even uncertain quality of the contractor to whom work is being outsourced), maybe business owner sanity and better communication and enhanced family dynamics makes the financial cost worthwhile (balancing the human/family/relationship cost with money).
  • Or, can we operate more efficiently and effectively? If so, maybe consideration of roles and responsibilities of the business owners – to streamline efficiencies and be clear where responsibilities lie – could be an answer.

Above all when dealing with these scenarios, keeping up communication is key. When communication breaks down, we enter dangerous territory. It’s even more important to hold regular meetings so everyone is kept in the loop. When people start to feel out of the loop or excluded from decision making, things go astray.

In summary, our clients seem to resonate with the idea of “having too many boxes open!” It means look at everything going on right now – then ask yourself “Can I close some of these boxes for now – sort out the immediate things I can sort – then open these other boxes in the future?”

It’s a very valuable way to break things down into ‘manageable bits’ and reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed.

All the best,



We get so many questions from people on our mailing list that we thought we would start answering some of them, so that others who are going through the same thing can benefit too! If you’d like to ask a question, send us an email here.

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