How to Stay Healthy in a FIFO (Fly In Fly Out) Mining Job

FIFO workers have reported suffering from stress, fatigue and anxiety. This type of work can also take a toll on personal relationships. Mining companies are aware of the problems these jobs can cause and do spend money on maintaining their employee’s mental health and general well being. Education and preparation can go a long way towards maintaining a healthy FIFO mindset.

FIFO workers

Rosters

Shift work has always taken its toll on workers, but more so on mine employees. Poor mental health can have the flow on effect of substance abuse, so it is important to learn how to manage fatigue. If left untreated, fatigue can lead to stress and alcohol or drug abuse. Long shifts can also take a toll on an employee’s physical and mental health. Education programs can help you cope with these shifts.

Fatigue

Shift work involves long hours working in a tough environment and sometimes an unkind climate. This can take a toll on the mental and physical state of any worker. Judgment and ability to function properly can be impaired by extreme fatigue. This can cause anxiety and emotional tension for the FIFO worker. Mining companies run employee assistance programs on sleep management.

Psychological problems

Many people think working two or three weeks on and having one week off would be a dream job. Living in remote areas with structured work, meal and break times and being isolated from other people can lead to relationship problems and can also cause accidents and a risk to safety. Mining companies offer assistance with planning your finances, what to expect onsite, how to plan for your time away from the mine and how to stay in communication with your family.

Isolation

Long weeks away from home can put pressure on relationships. Often, because of their isolation, FIFO workers feel they are missing out on family celebrations and interaction with friends and family members. Families always look forward to having their loved one home, but there is a period of adjustment on both sides. This transition can lead to stress, anxiety and pressure and can also lead to mental health issues. Employees and their families should take advantage of pre-employment education so they will be aware of the challenges ahead.

Stigma

Many FIFO workers do not seek help because of the unseen barrier of stigma attached to reaching out. Although help is at hand, many workers will not actively seek help. It is important to talk to onsite psychologists and counsellors to ensure good mental health and to overcome the feelings of powerlessness. Working in the mines can be quite regimented in relation to set meal times and living in a confined environment and you will need to learn how to manage this effectively.

Many companies offer new employees training programs on what to expect when undertaking working in the mining industry. Counselling in relation to health problems are also now offered post-employment. Training in preparation for working in the mining industry is also offered by One Key Resources where specific training is conducted for FIFO work in the fields of mining, civil industries and gas. There are many effective coping behaviours initiated by mining companies that are now steering away from the ‘harden up’ attitude. With help, FIFO workers are learning to manage the impact mining work has on their mental health.

Image Credit:
Africa – FreeDigitalPhotos.Net

How to Talk to a Loved One about their Alcohol Addiction

This is a challenging issue to tackle. No one wants to hear that they have a problem. This is why we all have the natural reaction to resort to denial. Before you can discuss the problem with your loved one you need to assess the situation. The following article discusses not only how to discuss this issue with your loved one but how to prepare yourself. Remember that you want to get your loved one back, not alienate them.

alcohol addcition
All you can do is let them know you will
support them. When they do decide to
get help just be there for them.

Emotions

You need to be realistic. You can’t stop someone else’s behaviour. It is ultimately up to them. The drinker has to help themselves and more importantly want to help themselves. This is not to say you have no power. You can influence them to come out of denial. They’ll never admit it to themselves. You do need to watch the way you talk and behave around them. This is a delicate issue.

Enablement

You need to be honest with yourself. Do you enable their alcoholism? The alcoholic appreciate the negative attention they receive from you. They confuse your fussing over them as caring. Your putting them to bed, caring for them when they are intoxicated, cleaning up messes and paying their fines is not helping them. You love them but their constant mistakes are not your responsibility. We all have to be independent.

What to say

Firstly, you need to be prepared. Start by telling them that you love them but you hate the addiction. Then you need to explain to them that you can’t stand by whilst they drink but will stand by them when they decide to quit. You will need to explain how much more you appreciate their company when they are sober. Finally, explain how they are not the same person you met and loved. You want your loved one to associate being sober and positive things like your attention. They need to know that they will have your support when they are ready to work towards sobriety.

These situations can be challenging so don’t afraid to reach out for help. Places like Malibu Horizon can provide you with a lot of information. It can also help you when it comes to talking to your loved one. You want to have information ready for them. It will show that you have prepared yourself for the discussion. You can’t force them to get help though. It has to be their choice. All you can do is let them know you will support them. When they do decide to get help just be there for them. This ultimately is their journey to take.

Image Credit:
Naypong – FreeDigitalPhotos.Net