Frustration according to the Mariam Websters dictionary is a deep chronic sense or state of insecurity and dissatisfaction arising from unresolved problems or unfulfilled needs.
We have all at some point felt frustrated and I am sure you agree with me that it is a very demoralizing, unhappy state to be in. It is completely counter-productive and often leads to aggressive, violent behavior in adults and children if left unattended. It could be in something as little as not remembering an online password, to bigger more important aspects of our lives involving parenting, relationships, work, family, business, etc. Personally, I find frustration to be very uncomfortable. It is one of those states of mind, I strive to get out of as soon as I begin to feel it. How do you deal with this 'deep chronic state of dissatisfaction'? The one thing I know for sure is that you must find ways to get out of it immediately and free yourself from it's strangling hold.
Two days ago, I woke up feeling very frustrated and restless. The work load at our tax firm was piling up with the approach of April 15th, the last day of official e-filing for individuals in the U.S. as clients were rushing to meet up with the dateline. Also, I had prepared an article for the blog, which I couldn't find; normally, I play around with a topic in my head for a couple of days, form it in my mind while I am in the sower or lying down resting, before putting it down on paper and then posting it. This particular article I had planned on posting on Tuesday (3 days ago) and couldn't find it in the 2 books I often jot stuff down in. Here I was on Wednesday, not having blogged for 3 days. I had decided to work from home that day. My kids were on spring break which means no school, I had them with me all day as I had planned on spending time with them. I was simply boiling inside.
My morning cup of coffee didn't help much that morning. And so, my priority that day was to clear up my tax office work load. I went up to the home office, locked myself in and worked continuously for hours, while my husband Albert watched the kids. That afternoon, when Albert went out for meetings, I took the kids to the baby sitter and went back to work. I made sure I didn't leave any file unattended to, called my clients back and sent everything off! That was huge. Then the next thing I needed to do was make a long awaited trip to the post office. I had parcels for family and friends that really should have gone out months ago. I sent those off too. Huge relief. I came back home, cleaned up the house which drives me up the wall when I spot toys on the floor which my children – 7, 4, 2 years old are very good at dropping. By then I was feeling much better.
Although I still had not blogged, I convinced myself that my readers would not mind, we have posted more than a hundred great articles and anyone seeking quality materials that day would at least find something to read?! That made me feel better. And then you know what? I decided to do something I had not done in a long time – I decided to go jogging. In my younger days, I had been an athlete playing volleyball through secondary school and university. During the past 4 years, I really had not done any physical exercise and I missed it, I could feel my body 'longing' for exercise but had been too busy ripping and running over the years for that. And so I put on my running shoes and hit the neighborhood sidewalks. What a great feeling that was. I now felt very accomplished. The person at the end of that day wasn't the same as the one that morning. Although I had given up a whole day with the kids, I was feeling satisfied, fulfilled and refreshed and of course, a happier mom and wife to be around. And today, I finally get the chance to reconnect with you this morning!
And so it is very important to identify why you are feeling frustrated or unsatisfied. Is it because you are being stopped from reaching your goals, you are being criticized, you are not being appreciated, you are not getting what you need? It could also be because of your feelings towards someone or something, your interpretation or misinterpretation of a situation, pride, etc. Annoyance is usually the baby of frustration and the end product is ALWAYS unhappiness. If your goal is to be as happy as possible (as is mine), you must always face that which is causing the frustration and find ways to deal with it.
The good news is, frustration is always mostly mental – that is, it is in your mind, which you have 100% control over. Once you understand that you are in control of your mind, it is easy to deal with these negative feelings that weigh you down just by changing the way you feel about something. I truly believe that we see things the way we are and by changing our feelings, we can change the way we see things. Think about it.
Health – are you unsatisfied with your weight, health? Come up with a plan to address those problems, set goals and immediately start working towards them.
Are you irritated by someone or something? If something or someone irritates you, the probability is that you might need to clean house inside of you first, or simply redirect your attention to things or people who match your values in life. Never let frustration fester, it turns you into some one you are not. Be more tolerant. Delete the toxic.
Are frustrated because of your relationship? Recognize that relationships require work to thrive as well just because no two individuals are ever the same. Stay on top of it, work on it if you decide to stay in it but never let any relationship suck the life out of you.
How about your environment at work and home? Make them comfortable, pleasant to be in; turn your home especially into a haven that inspires you and supports your vision for your self.
Remember that we often feel frustration due to 'unresolved problems' and unfulfilled needs'. And so, it makes sense to resolve those things that bother you, which might be simple or complicated depending on how YOU look at them. With clear simple goals, and stepping up to take control, I am sure those problems can be resolved. Unfulfilled needs – hmmmmmm; I would encourage you to be more of a giver than taker … as much as you possibly can. We as humans are social animals, and in our interactions with others we do expect to be treated in certain ways and feel 'entitled' to certain things but in recognizing that there is more joy in giving than in receiving, you save yourself a lot of disappointment and frustration. As you expect from others, so do they expect from you, it's that simple.
Avoid the quick fixes that make you feel better for a moment but really do not address the problem, e.g. blaming others, making excuses, gossiping, alcohol, drugs, etc. Take control of your life, give yourself a chance to live a good quality life by dealing with these frustrations when they show up. Reach out to others who have been in your situation and get professional help if need be. But do something. You will realize that nothing that frustrates you or causes you pain is bigger than you are.