2014 – my year of positivity

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Sarah Long arrived in Australia from the UK in early 2010 and met her Mr Miner soon after. They're based in Sydney and he does drive-in, drive-out (DIDO) to Orange in country NSW. Sarah came out to Oz as part of a six-month backpacking trip around the world, and never went home!

Last month on a Facebook support group, a new member asked for some advice about how to cope with being new to FIFO. The response shocked her - no doubt because the majority of our responses were negative.

There is a simple reason for this: those of us in the Facebook group use it to offload about the moans and gripes that occasionally come with this lifestyle - we reveal things we only want to share with other people who understand exactly how we feel.

The interesting thing is that when she pointed out how bad it all sounded, we all jumped to defend the FIFO/DIDO lifestyle. The majority of us love it and although sometimes it’s not the easiest, we wouldn’t want it any other way.

We all realised it was time to start being more positive and celebrating what we have, rather than moaning about the few things that annoy us.

I have always been a fan of positive thinking to bring about positive change, even to the point that when we’re watching the football nobody is allowed to make a negative comment in case it ruins my team’s chances! And so it makes sense that I should be able to apply this to the everyday things I do.

With that in mind, my belated New Year’s resolution is to only write positive pieces for this column in 2014. That’s not to say I won’t be talking about the big issues, like, "Should I stop eating cereal for dinner when Mr Miner's away" or "If your boyfriend works in the mines, should you be able to afford Louboutins?". But I will be trying to look at it from a positive angle – yes to both!

Now, it’s easy to say these things and not carry them out. We all know what an abandoned resolution feels (and looks) like. The never-used exercise bike in the corner, the juicer cluttering up the kitchen bench and that domain name I bought for my Miner’s Girl blog last year and still haven’t started yet. But this time I’m determined to make a change (which is incidentally what I said about my blog too).

Joking aside, I think it is really important to show people the great side of this lifestyle. The mainstream media often portrays FIFO as a bad thing, destroying towns, families and relationships like some Big Bad Wolf huffing and puffing and blowing things down. But, if we can be positive ourselves, it makes it easier to ignore the negative vibes and continue doing what we love.

Starting as I mean to go on, here are my top three favourite things about this mining lifestyle:

  • I can be totally independent for a week, eat what I like, see who I like, do what I like.
  • Absence makes the heart grow fonder - you really don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.
  • Fly-in (or drive-in) day. If you do FIFO, you know why!

So there you go. That is my simple, but important New Year’s resolution and I’m trusting you all to hold me to it. And you can hold me to the blog thing to while you’re at it – 2014 is the year to say yes!

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