Sharpen the tool first.
I acquired a scythe from a friend. It was almost completely useless when I first tried to use it. I did not know how to swing it, nor did I know how sharp it had to be.
Fast forward to now, I sharpened the scythe with my file set. I put a good sharp edge on the tool so that the clean shimmering steel was visible on the edge. The plants get swiped clean off now that I got the rhythm of the scythe. I thought the tool was antiquated and useless until I took the time to properly care for my scythe. It goes to show, many ancient technology have their place in modern times.