Optimism vs. Realism or Optimism in Conjunction with Realism

Working with rangeland and livestock (Ranching) has always been an industry of OPTIMISM.

“It will rain soon.”

“When it does rain it will be of adequate volume to cause the land to recover.”

“We’ll hold on for a bit longer, it will rain soon.”

“Yes, feed is high, but it is better than———-”

“Next year’s calves will be better.”

Being a REALIST is many times the hardest to accept but is the process that can make that ranching operation truly sustainable and provide a future for the operation, moving the operation forward to the next step in the ever-changing ranching environment.

The author Adam M Grant states “The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts. It’s to revise old views to incorporate new facts.” Utilizing this statement to make the ranching operation sustainable for the families involved and the environment within the operation is critical in todays complicated processes of attaining those sustainability goals.

Understanding the positive relationship of grazing the rangeland and the rest that is to follow is a major key to sustainable ranching and sustainable rangeland resources. This is new information for many and must be incorporated into the old views for future profitability and recovery of our rangeland resources.

Now that the ‘new’ facts are being applied, the rancher’s optimism can now be confidently applied to his operation thanks to the reality of understanding the Graze-Rest relationship

“When it does rain, the land will recover quickly thanks to the improved soil health and the continuous cover of deep-rooted thriving perennial grasses and forbs.”

“Drought is no longer as prevalent as it used to be thanks to the healthy rangeland.”

“Feeding of livestock is no longer a major expense, as the land is providing adequate feed resources for the livestock.”

“Now that I understand the graze-rest relationship, the future of the operation is bright.”

A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than to your convictions.

The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts. It’s to revise old views to incorporate new facts.

Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend.



How much rain does it take to be effective? Depends on the density and health of the plants on the ground.

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