Construction is a tough gig. Both mentally and physically. Most contractors end up finding balance opposite that of the mainstream.
Construction workers are prone to injury according to the health and safety watchdogs but this is actually not 100% true. Of course there is risk to the job but it is very true that some people are causing all the accidents. In fact construction is one of the few jobs where people are required to maintain at least a certain level of health to participate. So the physical demand can be a benefit if you are trying to stay healthy and active. Common sense safety procedures can go a long way in keeping you off the injured list as well. If you eat a healthy diet and are actively working construction you should maintain a good physical condition. Which is a perk in my opinion.
There is also the issue of working hours. I never understood why contractors got up so early until I began running jobs myself. The I found myself waiting at the supply house at 5:45 AM. The big advantage here though is that I am usually off work by 2 or 3 in the afternoon. I usually make some coffee or two and then have time to handle 2-3 hours of errands during business hours. I am usually in bed by 9pm which is alright. The only downside is my jet lag from the weekend. But It feels like I get so much more accomplished when I wake up early and I actually get more rest because my sleeping schedule is very regimented.
Traveling is often seen as perk of being a construction worker in the eyes of office workers. They imagine traveling around and working out in the sun all day with your buddies. While this is true and its a very nice benefit it can get very old. After a month of driving to some god forsaken place an hour+ away you will be hating life. When I was younger I enjoyed it more because I was in a new place all the time. But now I feel like this is a drawback. Travel expense and road time are annoying. The only advantage is that traveling expenses to a job are always tax deductible. Driving to the office isn’t.
There will always be those jobs that just suck. I know many people who took nigh jobs fighting traffic 2+ hours. Don’t be one of those people. Market yourself well and find a good company. I know many tradesman that travel to distant location to earn big checks on oil pipelines or in boom towns. This is a good strategy because you can live cheaply for a few years and save money to buy a house for cash. So I guess it’s not so bad. They key is really finding a long term pattern that you can live with.
I did so through branching out into other trades and businesses such as web design, computer programming and robotics or technology. You can check out my other websites such as cagneymoreau.com, sococonstruction.com and signalhilltechnology.com.