With most holidays, we seem to forget what the day is all about. On July 4, I’m sure many of you will be attending barbecues and lighting off a few fireworks. But try not to get too bogged down in the sights and sounds of the day, and take a moment to remember that we celebrate our independence. This year, it feels more important than ever.

It’s been a difficult four years for Americans, even more so for those in the construction industry. The Associated General Contractors of America recently reported that construction employment declined in 164 out of 337 metropolitan cities between May 2011 and May 2012. The AGC’s chief economist said that the job losses continue to increase.

If you are the owner of a sheet metal or HVAC company, and you are hanging in their despite the economy, be thankful. If you are staying profitable and doing well in the face of these tough economic times, than you should be very thankful!

It’s been tough times for the United States, but it is still the country where owning a business is still part of the American dream. While our country may not be economically safe and sound right now, it is still possible to launch your own business and be successful. And you can be successful on your own terms.

I get to speak to contractors and business owners all the time, and while they would like to see the time of big profits return, I think many of them are confident about the future. They are all very resourceful, and know what they need to do to stay on top. This is a country where new ideas and new ways of doing business are possible. So on Independence Day, light a few sparklers, but take the time to offer up your thanks. Business will get better, and there is no better country where that can happen.