Episode #43: Brett Finch Speaks On Focusing on the Things You Can Control

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Thanks for listening to another episode of It Ain’t Weak to Speak with Sam Webb. Please rate the podcast and leave a review if you enjoyed it. 

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It is my pleasure to introduce our guest on the show today, an all round legend, Brett Finch. One of the most popular guys in the game of rugby league and known for being the life of the party, Brett is a straight shooter with a side more serious than what meets the eye. He joins us today to talk about his life, his career and why he turned to alcohol and substances to deal with the challenges of retiring from the game he loved most.

Brought up in the game, Brett’s dad was a rugby player and coach and from a very young age, all Brett ever wanted to do was to be a rugby star. Having the confidence and determination to do what it takes, Brett debuted for Canberra at the age of 17, played in Grand Finals and wrote himself into State of Origin folklore by kicking the winning goal for NSW in 2006.

In this episode, Brett talks about his love for rugby, his transition into retirement and the journey to reaching out for help with his drug and alcohol abuse. Brett talks about the unwritten rule in male culture that you don’t talk and that so many of his mistakes could have been prevented if he reached out for help sooner. 

Brett talks with candor about his struggles with transitioning into the workforce and owning up to his alcohol addiction while being in the public eye. He talks about where life is going for him now and that he’s working to bring out his more serious side instead of always being known for the party guy.

For all rugby fans or anyone facing a struggle, this episode is for you. Brett hits the message home that the most important thing is to talk and that knowing how to approach someone in need is just as important as knowing how to reach out for help.



[3:30]: Brett talks about the winning field goal, how he got called late into the game and how he was out late drinking the night before but it was one of the best games he’d ever played

[5:15]: How Brett always backed himself on the field and knew that he had what it takes to win

[6:20]: Without the pressure of knowing he was playing the big game, Brett was able to relax and play his best. Brett is known for loving a laugh but knows how to be serious when it’s time to switch on.

[8:00]: How Brett played the best game when he didn’t prepare but played the worst when he prepared really hard. We shoot ourselves in the foot when we overthink and get consumed by things we can’t control.

[11:15]: How Brett always wanted to play football and was willing to do whatever it takes for rugby.

[13:00]: Now Brett has to work to earn money but he was previously doing what he loved and money was a byproduct  

[14:30]: How Brett has had to face the challenges of retirement, no longer having purpose or being qualified for anything else and that the culture around him was to never ask for help

[16:00]: Brett discovered that he had to rewire his brain because the life he knew as a professional athlete wasn’t normal and all of a sudden it was taken away

[18:30]: How during the last year of playing, Brett knew he was going to struggle in retirement and turned to alcohol to stop thinking about the problem

[20:30]: Alcohol is only a temporary solution and the voice always comes back stronger until you deal with it

[21:15]: How footy was the only thing Brett loved so when he had to start working a job he didn’t love, he turned to drugs. He knew he was struggling but instead of asking for help, he kept going.

[23:25]: How going public with his struggles has made things difficult but it’s been worth it to impact other people in a positive way

[25:20]: How Brett has been known as the life of the party but there’s also a very serious side to him and he’s trying to let that part out more through his podcast, Brett Finch Uncensored

[28:00]: How having a wife and daughter has helped Brett be accountable for his decisions because it’s no longer just about him

[29:00]: Brett’s advice to others in a career with a shelf life is to make sure you talk about what you’re going through. People don’t know until you tell them and getting someone else’s perspective can help break down things that seem insurmountable.

[32:30]: How sometimes we don’t see where we need help and sometimes we don’t want to see. This is where mates are important but not everyone knows how to approach someone in need.



Brett’s podcast: Brett Finch Uncensored

Brett’s Instagram: @brettfinch_

Brett’s Facebook: @brettfinchuncensored


Thanks for listening to another episode of It Ain’t Weak to Speak with Sam Webb. Please rate the show and leave a review if you enjoyed it. 

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If after listening to this episode and you don't quite feel right or you want to reach out to someone to speak to, we have provided some useful resources below. 

For immediate support please call one of the following 24/7 hotlines. Someone will be ready to take your call. Remember, ‘It Ain’t Weak to Speak’


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+6Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800


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National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

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