Mental Health or Why is everyone angering me?

In the Midwest, this can be a particularly trying time of year for people in the contracting world.

Daylight hours are short, many in our industry are laid off, and those working face harsh winter conditions. Add to that the old ideas that people need to be stoic, a tough guy that just gets it done and doesn’t ask for help. 

These factors can lead to a decline in your mental health and even depression.

It’s easy to see when your physical health is declining. Your gut protrudes, you breathe heavily going up the stairs, and your doctor tells you to make oatmeal a regular and disgusting part of your morning routine.  The steps to fix physical health are well-known and openly discussed. There are fitness gurus, weight loss reality shows, and endless diet trends. However, mental health continues to be kept in the dark and ignored like that rotting lettuce in the fridge’s bottom drawer.  

It is time for mental health to be as openly discussed as physical health. Physical and mental health are linked. That is why it can be difficult to take care of one without the other. The good news, there are steps you can take to help yourself mentally just as there are steps to help physically. 

 First look at some of the ways you can spot declining mental wellness in yourself.

Signs to look for:

Mental effects:

  • Low motivation-which can make it difficult to take care of yourself.  
  • Decreased productivity
  • Increased conflict with co-workers or people close to you 
  • Near hits, incidents, and injuries
  • Decreased problem-solving ability

Physical effects:

  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Digestive problems
  • Difficulty concentrating 
  • increased risk of Diabetes 
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke

If you find yourself ticking any of the above boxes, adding just 1 item from the list below will make a positive difference in your mental health.

Ways to help yourself:

  • Exercise 
  • Mindfulness/Meditation-which is often joked about but is proven to be very effective
  • Eat well
  • Stop smoking 
  • Get adequate rest
  • Seek Help -There are a wide variety of resources available


Union members can contact:

LiUNA Local 563-Sand Creek Group ph: 651-430-3383 Toll-Free: 888-243-5744

Specializes in assisting union members with any of the following challenging life issues: Relationship Issues, Parent/Child, Problem Drinking and/or Drug Abuse, Gambling, Family Violence, Loss and Grief, Financial Crises, Depression, Concern over Aging Parents, Job Stress, Legal, and more

IUOE Local 49 TEAM  toll-free: 800-634-7710 web address:

They offer Patient Advocacy and Employee Assistance for everyday problems or if you’re in crisis. You can call them 24 hours a day by phone 

Available to everyone

  • Call or text 988 for 24/7 access to trained crisis counselors. To chat-
  • Text HELLO to 741741 24/7 access to a confidential crisis counselor
An Angry frustrated Matchstick person