Want to talk? Look out for a Bluehat

ADAM WOODS
WORKING ON SMALLER JOBS
Bluehat since March 2019

ONSITE: Why did you become a Bluehat?

ADAM: I have found that not talking about a problem makes it harder for you. If I can be there for someone to talk to, I would like to do that. There are a lot of guys I know who think that talking about how you feel is a sign of weakness, that men don’t do it. I think having someone like a Bluehat on site makes it so much easier. Not everyone can take the next step of calling a counsellor even if they know they probably should. But they can talk to me and I can sit with them and help them do it.

ONSITE: Now you have done the Bluehats training what is it like on site?

ADAM: I have been mostly working on smaller sites where not as many guys know about Bluehats. On one site a guy went off on a few days leave because of stress. I followed him up to have a chat and after a while he was able to decide what he wanted to do about the situation and felt a lot better about it. I got a lot of satisfaction knowing that I could help someone.

ONSITE: Do you find it hard to talk to people about personal issues?

ADAM: Not at all. I know what it is like to feel down. Many people have a weight to carry and may feel down but I have no problem asking them if they are having thoughts of suicide. As I said it feels better to talk about it and get some help if you need it.

ONSITE: Everyone should take care of themselves – whether they are a Bluehat or not. What are you doing?

ADAM: I have an Incolink counsellor’s number in my phone and have called them a couple of times to talk through things, as how to deal with situations I have not faced before – I know they are there to help.

DREW RAWLING
FROM THE HARBOUR TOWN SITE IN DOCKLANDS
Bluehat since May 2019

ONSITE: Why did you become a Bluehat?

DREW: I just wanted to help. We all have tough times and when I’ve had mine, I was offered help and I know how good that can feel and how much it can get you out of the dark place you are in.

ONSITE: Now you have done the Bluehats training what is it like on site?

DREW: I have only done a few interventions and I think I would call my style peaceful, if you know what I mean. I try approach that person in a peaceful way, so they can feel calmer. As we talk, I often find that setting small goals for people, like having a coffee or something to eat, helps them to focus on things other than what is bothering them. It gives them a plan that gets them through the way they are feeling.

ONSITE: Looking back over your time as a plumber, have you seen changes in the way a worker might think about asking for help when a mate is having a tough time?

DREW: I think it has become easier over the last few years to admit you aren’t travelling well. I remember when they first started R U OK Day. At first, we thought it was a bit of a laugh and said it to each other just for fun. Now I think it’s changed, and people are really asking it more seriously – it gives someone a chance to say they are not feeling OK at all.

ONSITE: Are you glad you became a Bluehat?

Yes – I really like it. I feel excited and focused about starting something new – even though I still do my job. I feel positive about being able to help with change in someone’s life.