News

At this time of the year we are all busy, often feeling tired, our nerves can be a bit raw and sometimes we are just “over it”. Everyone gets a bit tired and rundown, from kids at school to mums and dads at home or at work.

We all know there’s lots of work to get done to get us through to the end of the year. This may include finishing the harvest, various stock work, that last FIFO swing before holidays, getting that last job finished and having kids end of year school events to attend. This can lead to us working beyond our limit.

We all have a varying capacity to both absorb those extra things thrown at us and our ability to get the job done, this can differ depending on an individual’s work ethic. We should never assume “what I can do is the norm”, then place that expectation on family members, employees or work colleagues.

Occupational Health & Safety (OHS) gives us a legislative framework to guide us, but it doesn’t allow for the cultural context in which us blokes sometimes operate. The cultural context means our approach to risk taking (we are hard wired risk takers); our need to get the job done (task orientated/deadlines); and our approach to winning. These behaviours can cloud our judgement around keeping safe both in the workplace and in our personal life. We need to be aware and manage our behaviour otherwise we will invariably fail in our responsibility to stay safe.

Keeping safe needs to start somewhere, it is no different to our individual health. I always say that my health is my responsibility, it is not my doctors, my workplace or my wife’s. However, my wife is very good at giving me a good kick up the backside to get me to the doctor to do my annual service visit, my dentist appointment or my skin check.

So, when it comes to keeping safe it is everyone’s responsibility. It is up to all of us whether we are in the workplace, belong to a community group, or within our family setting to be vigilant about keeping safe.

Tips to keeping safe:

  •  Constantly remind ourselves about work protocols;
  •  As employers, have realistic expectations of our employees;
  •  Look out for work colleagues, be aware and respond to behaviour changes. Talk to them about it!
  •  Try and maintain a balanced life, we can only do so much before fatigue becomes an issue;
  •  Outside busy times, take time out;
  •  Enjoy what we do.

As another year winds down let’s keep safe by staying focused on the job at hand, so we all can get to enjoy the upcoming holiday break.

Merry Christmas and we wish everyone a safe and festive new year.

Owen and the Team

The Regional Men’s Health Initiative
delivered by Wheatbelt Men’s Health (Inc.)        
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401            
Phone: 08 9690 2277                
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.regionalmenshealth.com.au


   

This calendar is a fundraiser for the Bruce Rock Football Club and also Wheatbelt Mens Health. Strange Images took the photos and helped design the calendars. You support would be greatly appreciated.

https://www.strangeimagesphotography.com/shop-online/bk-football-club-hotpies-calendar-2018 

 

Jaxon and the Team

The Regional Men’s Health Initiative
delivered by Wheatbelt Men’s Health (Inc.)        
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401            
Phone: 08 9690 2277                
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.regionalmenshealth.com.au


   

 

Community Educators from the RMHI team were proud to be involved with the launch of the Think Mental Health Campaign on Tuesday the 28th of November.

The campaign will be delivered online, via radio, social media and digital media.

Through these mediums the Mental Health Commision is hoping to raise awareness with the intention to educate the community about the following key points.

 

  • Empower people to look after their own mental health and wellbeing, as well as that of others.
  • Encourage people to check in with friends, family and colleagues.
  • First phase of the campaign targets males aged 25 – 54 years, because three out of four deaths by suicide are male (in Western Australia), and their family and friends, who can play a support role.
  • Like our physical health, our mental health affects us all on a daily basis. Sometimes just talking about it can make a huge difference.
  • The key thing to take away from this campaign is not to underestimate the power of listening and talking.

 

More information on the topic can be found at the Think Mental Health Health website: www.thinkmentalhealthwa.com.au which includes a mental health self-assessment and check-up tool.

It will be supported by a community resource kit for workers in the mental health field (Suicide Prevention Coordinators), and materials for GPs. 

If you think someone else might be interested …. share details of the campaign.

 

Jaxon and the Team

The Regional Men’s Health Initiative
delivered by Wheatbelt Men’s Health (Inc.)        
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401            
Phone: 08 9690 2277                
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.regionalmenshealth.com.au


   

Back in 2003 a couple of mates in Melbourne discussing fashion and recurring trends joked about bringing back the Mo, they talked a few mates into joining them and chose the month of November renaming it “Movember”.

Today it has become a global movement participated in by 21 different countries, has raised $770 million and funded 1,200 men’s health projects since 2003. This movement is motivated by reducing premature deaths in men and is making a significant contribution to “changing the face of men’s health”.

The 3 main areas of focus/awareness of the Movember movement are: Prostate Cancer; Testicular Cancer; Mental Health and Suicide Prevention. While we cannot cover all these topics in the required detail in just one article, we have chosen to focus on the Prostate, as we believe before we can address the issue of Prostate cancer, as blokes we must first understand a bit about our Prostate.
 

While prostate cancer kills around 3000 Aussie men each year there are approx. 2.4 million men living with a prostate problem (mostly due to enlargement).
So what is it? The prostate is an important part of our reproductive system, it is about the size of a walnut (in a young man) and makes the fluid that protects and feeds the sperm. This little gland is shaped like a donut and the tube we pee through goes through the centre. The problem is that as part of the ageing process the prostate keeps growing, trebling in size over our life, and as the prostate enlarges it inhibits our ability to urinate.

Most of us know that some older men have trouble emptying their bladder. Sometimes this means getting up often during the night and not being able to do anything when they do, which is a nuisance and embarrassing. Something more serious could be happening such as a blockage, which can cause repeated urinary tract infections or result in bladder or kidney problems, or it could be prostate cancer. Unfortunately, the symptoms of several Prostate conditions are similar.

As men we need to act on any prostate issue that is affecting us. We need to find out if it is part of the natural process of ageing and if you are troubled by urination problems, you should see a doctor (no matter what your age). If your doctor agrees that your symptoms need further evaluation and treatment, you may need to undergo a few tests.

Diet and exercise are important to prostate health, we know that eating 150 grams of nuts a week and incorporating natural red foods, such as beetroot, tomato and watermelon, into our diet helps keep our prostate, and the rest of our body, in good condition.


Terry and the Team

The Regional Men’s Health Initiative
delivered by Wheatbelt Men’s Health (Inc.)        
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401            
Phone: 08 9690 2277                
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.regionalmenshealth.com.au


   

A word that I feel is over used and out of context in the modern world today is the word ‘resilience’ and I would like to question the use of that word. There is even a whole industry built around ‘resilience’ in the form of providing training and education services in this space.

Resilience is the correct word if used in the context of a person’s ability to ‘bounce back’ ie. recovering from shock or trauma. However, when it is used about:-

  • our ability to cope with everyday life;
  • going through a shared adversity such as a natural disaster;
  • an adverse personal event (ie. death or illness);
    it is often used out of context because these experiences encompass much more than just ‘bouncing back’.


Both on an individual basis and as a community it is not until we experience a traumatic event or been pricked by a circumstance that we will find out how resilient we are. The public is telling us that all the time.

Consequently, when we use the word ‘resilience’ we are pigeon holing an individual and/or community into a category that ‘so called’ experts want us to fit into. For example, after a traumatic event the experts are quick to say that the community and/or individual is ‘resilient’ rather than acknowledging that we all have a random ‘capacity’ when operating outside our comfort zone. I suggest that a better baseline word to use to encapsulate all the times in our lives (the good as well as the challenging) is the word ‘capacity’.

Capacity is the capability to contain and accommodate stuff in our lives. This conveys a positive vibe to us as we endeavour to maintain the right balance.

We are all born with a random capacity to deal with life’s issues. It is a bit like a rubber band and we all know and recognise an individual’s capacity to operate fully, half, or to not appear stretched at all. No matter what we are challenged by, we all have ups and downs, and the word ‘capacity’ allows us to capture our entire range of qualities be they good, bad or ugly and to then carry on and cope with what hand we are dealt with.

Our total state of physiological wellbeing is encapsulated in our individual capacity to both build stuff into our lives (something that is important for us blokes) and deal with stuff thrown at us from time to time through our life’s journey.

When we combine the capacity of us as individuals with us as a collective community we have harnessed an enormous capacity to live and thrive in rural and regional Western Australia.

When talking about individuals/communities we should coin our comments around capacity from a strength base platform rather than resilience ...this in turn will have a positive influence on our wellbeing.

Owen and the Team

The Regional Men’s Health Initiative
delivered by Wheatbelt Men’s Health (Inc.)        
PO Box 768, Northam WA 6401            
Phone: 08 9690 2277                
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.regionalmenshealth.com.au