Each week, ICBA’s Jordan Bateman reflects on what we’ve learned as we participate in ICBA’s Workplace Wellness Program. This program is free for all ICBA members – check out icba.ca/wellness for details.

There’s a great Bruce Springsteen song (aren’t they all!) called Wrecking Ball, which he played at the very final concert before they tore down Giants Stadium in New Jersey. It has a great bridge, where he sings over and over: “And hard times come, and hard times go, and hard times come, and hard times go… just to come again…”

I’ve been thinking about that song a lot during this month’s look at emotional intelligence, and how we respond to external influences. The truth is that we can’t always control whether it is good things or challenges we’re going to face, whether it is criticism or praise we’re going to draw. There’s a seasonality, a rhythm to life, that brings good times and bad.

What we can control is how we respond. Our study of emotional intelligence offers some suggestions on how to do that:

  1. Think on your own emotions – better understand what you’re feeling
  2. Ask others for their perspectives
  3. Be vigilant – watch for early signs of negative behaviours
  4. Try to find the ‘why’ – see the situation through someone else’s eyes
  5. Don’t get defensive when you’re criticized, but ask yourself what you can learn from it

Springsteen has openly shared about his challenges to find mental wellness, and helped others understand. Thanks to The Boss for putting into words what a lot of people around the world are feeling.

ICBA’s Workplace Wellness Program is helping more than 75 companies and 7,000+ construction professionals better understand mental health. The program is free for ICBA members — see icba.ca/wellness.