When Dealing with Frustration

Sometimes life puts you in a funk.

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If this picture doesn’t just scream frustration…only thing worse than ruining your hairdo in your sweater is putting fitted sheets on a bed. Oh, or trying to stuff the air mattress back in the bag. Am I right?

Perhaps you’ve been feeling unappreciated or listless.

Maybe things haven’t been coming together for you, despite your best efforts.

Or, you may have found yourself in a season of waiting, where try as you might, you can’t control a darn thing.

You’re frustrated.

Frustration is one of my least favorite feelings in life (…Besides the feeling of being itchy. That one takes the cake.). And one of the most annoying facets of that feeling is that it often leads to other undesirable feelings, such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Self-doubt
  • Doubt in God and others who love you
  • Anger
  • Confusion
  • Jealousy

It’s a real problem. And to be honest, it’s one that’s plaguing me right now.

For me, frustration typically manifests from one specific arena, but then touches every other aspect of my life in numerous ways. For example, maybe the main frustration is work. But then, because you’re feeling some (if not all) of the feelings listed above, you start feeling frustrated by your significant other, by that thing so-and-so posted, by the humidity…the list can go on and on. Frustration has a ripple effect and, if you’re not careful, it can penetrate every aspect of your life.

So, how does one tame the frustration beast?Β This is what has worked for me lately:

  1. Allow yourself to be frustrated, but only for an hour.Β 
    It’s ok to feel frustration, but you simply cannot allow it to fester. So give yourself a time limit. Feel frustrated. Go to a trusted friend or family member that is NOT a part of the situation. Pout a little. …but then, do not stay in that place. After an allotted time, make a game plan. For example, if you’re frustrated with a friend, feel that frustration and feel it BIG, but then after an hour, choose to let it go or confront the problem. Either response is fine, but don’t continue to sit in it.
  2. Go for a walk, run, or complete a workout.
    You’d be surprised how often frustrating situations are built up in your mind due to stress. Try being active and see how you feel after.
  3. Pray. Read your Bible.
    If you’re a person of faith like me, this is by far the best route to begin with. Often times my frustration begins with pride. Opening my Bible or talking to God about it always reminds me that life just isn’t about me. When I gain that bigger picture of His goodness and His grace, I’m able to have more grace with others and myself.
  4. Bring frustration to people.
    Maybe this is obvious, but if you’re willing to embrace the awkwardness of actually talking to someone who’s caused frustration, it’s likely that your negative feelings will evaporate quickly. Now, if I’m being honest, this is not always the case. But more times than not, frustrations are formed from miscommunication, and simply talking it out and can do a world of good.

Kat
Currently listening to “Say It” by Maggie Rogers

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