Don’t Spill the Milk!

When I was in high school, my main source of income was working on a dairy farm, milking cows. It was not a large operation, just a small family farm, with about 33 cows to milk each morning and evening. This meant starting my days at 4am. I would rub the sleep out of my eyes and drive to the farm to begin the process of rinsing the lines and getting the cows ready to milk. It wasn’t complicated or very difficult, but there was a definite order that needed to be followed and strict procedures had to be met in order to make sure that the milk did not become contaminated.  Most of the time it was peaceful and quiet, since there was no one around except cows and the barn cats to keep me company. When the occasional visitor stopped by for a chat it was always nice, but there was a risk that I would forget the routine I was in and lose my focus. This distraction could make me forget the milking order and I would miss a cow. This does not put them in a good mood when they have to wait too long to be milked.

One time it was more serious, however, than making “Bessy” miss her turn.  There was a cow that was being treated with medicine for a common illness and though she needed to be milked, her milk could not be mixed with the rest of the day’s production.  It had to be kept separate and could be fed to the calves, but could not be sold since it would contain medicine.  Well, this one day I happened to be distracted.  I don’t remember why I lost my focus,  but I milked that treated cow. When I finally realized what I had done, it was too late.  The milk was contaminated. It made me sick to see the dairy farmer open up the valve on the milk tank and run over 400 gallons of fresh milk down the drain, but he had no other choice.

Distractions can hurt us in many ways.  We have a project to finish, but distractions keep us from completing it on time.  We have always dreamed of starting our own business, but daily living causes us to lose our focus and we never take that step. Do you have something that is distracting you? Is it your schedule? What do you do with your spare time? What are you willing to sacrifice now to have a shot at achieving your dream? Would you be willing to skip a season of your favorite television show, so you start educating yourself? Henry Ford said this, “It has been my observation that most people get ahead during the time that other people waste.”If you can find a way to waste less time, eliminate distractions and focus a portion of every day to reaching your dream, then maybe you will someday keep yourself from crying over spilled milk.

About The Author

Duane Rockensock

Duane (Rocky) Rockensock is a husband, a dad, and the National Reconditioning Manager for AmeriGas Propane. Since he was a teenager, Duane has loved hearing the stories of how people have started creative businesses or found ways to use their talents to accomplish amazing things. For that reason he started this blog to encourage teens and adults to find their purpose and to provide the tools and resources to make that happen!