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Three Advantages to Being Frustrated

Updated: Dec 5, 2020

I like being grateful and excited. I don't like carrying negative feelings. If I'm going to use the word hate, I hate feeling sad. I hate feeling angry. I hate feeling anxious.

I can't describe it but for me, negative feelings don't feel natural. They feel very burdensome and I try to shut them down as quickly as possible.

Even though I find negative feelings to be emotionally whack (yes, using that term), I also know they are useful if applied with strategy.

Sometimes we fall into a place where overall things can be going pretty well in life but there's still a sense of dissatisfaction or frustration about one area or two.

What sucks for me is acknowledging that part of me is saying "this isn't enough" or "I don't want to do x anymore" or "how much longer until..." Little things mean a lot to me and gratefulness takes small effort on my part so I don't enjoy dwelling on the negative.

I also realize that in order to avoid self-pity and enable oneself to move forward out of the funk, there must be a resolve that the inconvenience or the challenge is just that... an inconvenience or a challenge.

Every single person alive will cycle through what Tarot calls "the Wheel of Fortune". When you are up you will inevitably experience down. When you are down you have nowhere to go but up. I keep this in mind constantly.

When I get frustrated because I want to make moves but the resources aren't there yet or the timing couldn't be any worse, I find ways to stay in motion in some way to minimize the power of my impatience.

The more you meditate on what bothers you, the more it will bother you. One positive thing about frustration is that you learn what triggers your stress. When you know what triggers your stress you now have means to defeat or minimize getting irritated or anxious in the first place.

If you know that sitting in traffic annoys you, you can start changing your route, changing your commute time or develop ways to make your commute more pleasurable with music or podcasts.

If you can't change the circumstance you may be able to change your reaction. If someone never returns your call and it irritates you, stop expecting the call, therefore preventing having a reason to get upset.

Another way to use frustration to your advantage is to stretch your imagination rather than retreating into anger or depression. When some people consistently don't get their desired outcome they lash out or they shut down altogether.

The problem with this is nothing gets resolved, nothing gets accomplished, and in fact regression occurs rather than progression. Frustration eventually becomes multiplied or it transforms into apathy. No one wants to be around an an apathetic or unstable person, including the apathetic unstable person.

To the contrary, proper use of frustration leads to ideas or courage that otherwise would be difficult to develop. Almost everything we have or use is the result of someone's frustration that something didn't exist to solve "that problem". Do it right and frustration can become a magical tool.

Finally, frustration builds the necessary patience to be more effective. Although we live in a world that is generally fast and furious, sometimes things not working out as planned turns out to be the best thing that could have happened.

Have you ever almost made a mistake and essentially blessed yourself for taking a moment to double-check what you did? Sometimes life does the favor for us.

Getting frustrated sometimes forces us to practice and perfect. Sometimes something not happening "on time" lines up for a better time. Sometimes a misunderstanding highlights a communication issue that needed to happen to clear tension or create clarity.

Frustration will always rear its head at some point but it is up to us to make use of it. We will continue to be taught by life whether we are in a classroom, on the job, or in the privacy of our homes. It doesn't always require yelling, self-doubt, or fear. Look for the possible benefits, even when it is annoying.

At the very least, work to get to a point that you aren't spending your life getting frustrated over the same things over and over. You may have only a certain amount of control in outcome but that doesn't mean you shouldn't use what you have.

So are you frustrated? Me, too. I'm taking advantage of mine though. What are you going to do about yours?

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