Our PM Rob Rinaldo tells his story on handling stress in the workplace and at home. How do you handle stress? Read the article below join the conversation by leaving a comment!
I recently read an article on how N.J. is the most stressed-out state in the country and this question came to me—How do I handle the everyday stress of a demanding job in what can be an extremely stressful field? On a larger scale, how do any of us NJ workers handle our daily stress?
My days consist of schedules, timelines, budgets, expenses, inspections, production, safety, subcontractor performance, materials and supply and the almighty deadline; they all add up to a massive amount of sleepless nights and sometimes a feeling like my head is in a vice and I don’t know which way is up.
How do I handle it? There is no simple answer, I just do. Sometimes with just a laugh or joke, but I don’t take my responsibilities lightly. One has to be able to joke about work and life or else we would crack under pressure, and that doesn’t do anybody any good—not my boss, co-workers, clients or my friends, my family, wife and kids.
We all work hard—that is what we get paid to do. At my company, we care about our projects—that’s what makes us valued employees. Working hard started for me at a very young age. The youngest of 8 children, we were all expected to pitch in. My mother and father worked hard to give us everything we needed. Notice I say needed—If we wanted something, we were taught to work for it.
My father had 3 jobs to get us what we needed. One of them was running a part-time lawn sprinkler business in which I worked some nights and every weekend – Saturday and Sunday during the Spring, Summer and Fall from under the age of 10 up to the time that I went away to college. Often, as the youngest, my father would direct a lot of his frustration towards me, saying, “Goddammit Robert!”. I knew he didn’t mean harm by it, but it got to the point that if someone just met me on a jobsite, they would think ‘Goddammit Robert’ was my name. My friends joke about it to this day. Over the years, I was told, “Don’t worry, he doesn’t mean it.” or “You have broad shoulders, you can take it.” It didn’t always bother me and when it did, I would put my head down and push to work harder to get the job done and just always do the best that I could do.
This learned work ethic and ability to handle stress and criticism has served me well over the years. It is something that I hope to instill in my kids, although I don’t have 8 of them!—Only two. I still don’t know how my parents did it. I’m just glad that they did and I would not change a single thing.
I am lucky that I love the work that I do, no matter how stressful it may be. There may be some days and times that I want to hang it up for an easier, potentially lower-paying job, but I get great satisfaction in working toward a job well done and seeing a project from ground breaking to grand opening. I am lucky enough to work for a company that appreciates and recognizes the hard work and dedication of their employees so I will continue to laugh it up, work hard and continue to do my best! I only occasionally say to myself “Goddammit, Robert!” but that normally comes with a smile on my face.
How do you handle the stress? Work out, go to the gym? Take a walk? Vent to your co-workers, friends and family? Work harder and perhaps you can laugh it off like I do?
Hopefully, you have figured it out or can help some of your co-workers, friends and family handle all of this stress in a healthy, productive manner. If you don’t find a way to handle it, it will get the best of you and that will not be good for you or anybody else for that matter. We would love to know, so please post a comment below, you never know who you may help!
Article by Rob Rinaldo, Project Manager at March Construction
Story by March Project Manager Robert Rinaldo, Editing by March Marketing Associate Briana Samman