Due to some very poor behaviour from one of the managers of the shed, where I was shouted at and humiliated without cause, I am leaving.

If someone wants to take over this site the cost is €35 per annum.  Email me for username and password.   If no one comes forward within 30 days I will delete the site. It will expire naturally in approximately a year.

PhilipJ Finlay Bryan B.Sc.(Hons) MA C.Q.S.W. FRSA


Change X

Hi Philip,

Do you think that the key to our physical and mental health is a combination of healthy diet, exercise, connecting to nature and positive social relationships?

All of these things can take place at the heart of our communities, so as we move into October, we’d like to focus on ideas that can make all of us, and our local communities, healthier.

There’ll be plenty to talk about this month but we’re getting started with the ideas that get us out of the house and active in our communities!

Of course parkrun comes to mind straight away – it’s a free, timed 5k run, that happens every single Saturday morning in 1,243 parks around the world and in more than 60 parks around Ireland!

You might think, “there’s no way could I get out of bed early on a Saturday to go for a run” and that’s what Kelly said, before she joined the parkrun in Dublin’s Marlay Park.

Kelly and her whole family start their weekends with parkrun. 

Meet Kelly in this short video on youtube

Tomorrow, Saturday October 7th,  is a very special day for parkrun.

Why? Because it’s International parkrun day and parkrun’s 13th anniversary tada   Even though we’re a day early:

If you’d like to celebrate, why not join a parkrun tomorrow and share your experience with pictures and videos?


If there’s no parkrun at your doorstep and no time to travel, there’s still time to get a gang together for a run and maybe have a chat about starting one.

Building the habits of a healthy lifestyle with our children is one of the greatest gifts we can give them and it’s more important than ever with obesity weights among young people growing all the time – one out of four children in Ireland is overweight. Very simple lifestyle changes, like walking instead of driving to school, can have a positive impact.

That’s the simple idea behind Walking School Bus. It’s a group of children walking to school with adult supervision. This way, it’s safe and children don’t have to walk alone and the group can be as small as 2 or 3 or as big as 20 children walking together!

We love the way the Happy Pear – you might know them for their cookbooks – are using their popularity to promote a healthy lifestyle in their hometown Greystones, where they run their café.

They managed to get 400 people down to the beach at 5am on a Sunday morning for a swim. They call it Swimrise and we think it’s an initiative worth spreading.

We hope there’s been something in here for you. If you have more ideas or questions, please do get in touch – all you need to do is hit reply on this email.

And a date for your diary: Next Tuesday, October 10th is World Mental Health Day. The focus for this year is mental health in the workplace. Maybe there are some ideas you can bring to your colleagues, like GIY @workMyMind@work or just have a think together about what you can do to support each other’s mental health at work through small changes.

Wishing you a healthy and active weekend!

Niamh and the ChangeX team

PS: Please spread the word:

Male Suicide in Ireland

We just had a group from Mojo come visit us in the Shed. :

Mojo ( ) is a 12 week training programme, developed by a collective of organisations, to reduce the high levels of male suicide in Ireland. Men learn to build their mental and physical fitness while developing their ability to engage with local services, set goals and develop a life plan.

Sheds have a role to play in the continuation of services to vulnerable men. We provide an ideal space for men to find their feet. We showed the guys around and they were suitably impressed with our facilities Then we sat down and Tom our chairman gave a brief talk and members of the shed chipped in with their experiences.

( I tried my “Hi, I’m Philip and I am an alcoholic, oops sorry wrong meeting” as a group icebreaker and again nobody laughed, maybe it’s not funny! – well, I think it’s funny. )

Statistics on suicides in Ireland are here.

Then we had hot dogs and everybody relaxed a bit. I had a good chat with one of the workers, another Londoner, and a few of the men.

With another mass shooting in America, gun control has come to the fore again (sigh); a recent video I watched commented that in suicide gun scenarios you rarely get a second chance.  Gun suicide accounts for more than 50% of suicide deaths in the US.

There have been times in my life that if I had had a gun, well I wouldn’t be here now talking to all you lovely people! 🙂

The  is a great site and well worth a visit. They have some good ideas and practices. They have just opened a branch in Offaly (my county in Ireland) and we will likely see a few members come into our Shed.  Sheds are everywhere but not many are as good as ours, facilities-wise.

Please note Mojo is a dot ngo domain that should be more widely used.

We help complete the service I think. We should elicit the help of our local job club too, as unemployment and suicide are linked.


New Domains

man connected

I have three new domains Philip James Finlay Bryan my initials no less as a four letter dot org can’t be bad. This is 2017 and you can still get a four letter domain. So I now have as an email address. So easy to type.

In my pursuit and capture of digital literacy I have set up for the princely sum of €4.99 for the year and for €3 pa . Why isn’t everyone doing it? I charge €25 per year for hosting, that’s peanuts.

So why don’t you have a domain?

Eoin Delaney does and IT’S HERE ! Have a look, we set it up this morning. Good man Eoin, it’s going to be a comedy site.

Flower Pots and Men’s Shed Shed

We needed a place to store the things we have made so here is the Men’s Shed shed:

All made from pallets except the roof. But it works well to store stuff.

Below a couple of painters painting the flower pot holder, they have just made. Great stuff!!


from my friend Paul on the RSA Fellowship Forum

First of all, RUOK? If not, let someone know. It’s OK to not be OK, but it’s not OK to say nothing if you’re not OK!

Secondly, what are you doing on RUOK? Day this year? Who are you going to ask the question to – a loved one, a close friend, a work colleague, a friend or family member you haven’t heard from for a while, the guy who works in the corner shop, the woman who lives next door…?

Rehearse asking the question, but don’t think about it too much because we just need to ask RUOK? to as many people as we can – on RUOK? Day and every day.

[Every day is RUOK? Day of course, it’s just that Thursday 14 September is formally, co-ordinated, awareness-raising, official, national RUOK? Day in Australia].

Have a look on the RUOK? website to get some ideas, encouragement or support if you need it. After you ask RUOK?, make sure you listen to the answer. If someone is not OK, listen some more and encourage them to seek help (e.g. by going to the RUOK? website, or other sources such as Lifeline or beyondblue, or their doctor).

However, bear in mind that your listening might actually be the very help they need.

Do you work in an office, shop, factory, building site…? What is your employer planning to do for RUOK? Day (or maybe you are that employer)? What is your manager planning to do (or maybe you are that manager)? What is your team going to do? What are YOU going to do? Maybe you can initiate something at work, as well as at home?

Let us know what you’re planning, and then let us know how it goes.

And finally, RUOK with the idea of asking RUOK? on RUOK? Day? If not, contact the RUOK? Day team and they’ll guide you.

If you’ve already organised something for RUOK? Day, that’s great. Please share so we can learn.

If not, here’s a simple but powerful team coaching & bonding exercise. I’ve facilitated this many times, and it always throws up new experiences & new coping strategies – for someone.

Get your team/group together over lunch or snacks in a suitably relaxed environment. Set the context by saying a few words about RUOK? Day & the importance of checking in with each other – asking ‘RUOK?’.

Everyone describes how they experience stress & anxiety, e.g. “I tend to get really stressed when…“, “I feel anxious when…“, “when I get really stressed, I tend to (get a cold sweat, go quiet, bite my nails, get really restless, stare at my computer…)“. What are the symptoms, the signs?

Everyone shares what they do when they get stressed or anxious. Most people have coping strategies, they just might not use that language, or even be conscious it is a coping strategy. “When I’m really stressed, I tend to…“.

Everyone learns from each other. Everyone learns about each other. Everyone becomes better able & willing to support each other. And you often learn about yourself too.

Tullamore Credit Union

Had a great day out at CU there were cakes and food and massages and of course The Tullamore Men’s Shed who provided all the awnings too. Great Fun!