Like many Australians coming over to Super League, Brayden Williame had a big decision to make in making the move.
The 24-year-old Catalan Dragons centre brought his family with him to make the transition easier.
Such a move is an example of a major life event that can affect someone’s mental fitness, something which rises to prominence this weekend for the annual State of Mind Super League round.
Williame and his Catalan teammates take on Huddersfield on Saturday night.
He said: “It was a big decision to move over. It was spur of the moment kind of decision. I was still contracted at Manly and I was enjoying my time there, but wasn’t getting much game time.
“I came here because I knew if I had a good pre-season, which I did, that I’ll force my way into getting that starting centre spot – it’s happened, I’m playing good footy and the rest is history really.”
Williame hails from central coast, about an hour north of Sydney, and he commuted from home to Manly, about an hour and a half drive.
He has had some time away from home before though.
He added: “I did my under 20s in Melbourne, which was an hours flight, but that was a big move for me. That sort of prepared me for this sort of thing. It’s definitely not the other side of the world, but as far as being away from family and stuff like that.
“It’s easier that there’s a lot of other Aussie guys, and most of the French boys speak good English.
“I’m really looking forward to having a dig at learning some French and being able to speak fluent by the end of the year, because I think that’s just a cool thing for life to add that to the résumé.
“I’m here for one more year after this. If my partner and my daughters are enjoying it, then who knows how long I’ll stay.”
This year’s State of Mind theme looks at the pressures of loss – be it a relationship, a job, income, a home or a bereavement, and how people can deal with it.
You can speak with State of Mind volunteers at the marquee which will be situated at games across the weekend.