Are you feeling frustrated? Chances are you’ve been here before. You’ve probably even worked out some coping strategies for when you’re stressed. The problem is, some of those strategies aren’t the best, a fact you’re already aware of.
Handling stress in healthy ways is an ongoing challenge. That’s because when we’re frustrated, we tend to react rather than respond. The good news is there are natural, healthy ways to deal with your frustration.
The first step in dealing with anything is to accept the reality of it. Once you’ve acknowledged you’re frustrated, you can do something about it, and it no longer rules your life.
Send an S.O.S
Pretend you’re behind enemy lines and stuck there. You can ask for help, but you’ll need to ask for that help in a letter. Describe your distress, including all the details of how you got where you are. Ask for help. When finished? Destroy the letter. You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel (and you might even get an idea for ‘rescue’ from the exercise).
Make a List
What are your options toward fixing whatever is causing the frustration? List everything you can think of, even the silly ideas. Use this list as a jumping-off point toward finding a solution.
Read something funny. Watch a comedy. Tune in to your favorite comedian. The act of laughter releases endorphins in the brain, helping you to feel better and think more clearly. Frustration doesn’t stand a chance.
Look at the Big Picture
What will this frustration look like next week? Next month? Next year? Will it be as scary as it is today? Asking these kinds of questions helps you to put your frustration in perspective, making it smaller and easier to deal with right now.
Find Some Energy
Hang around people who are full of enthusiasm. Being around positive people helps you to remain positive and likewise energizes yourself. Frustration fades in this environment.
Talk about what’s frustrating you with someone else or post it on your social media. You’ll find out very quickly that you’re not alone. More importantly, you’ll see other people who have successfully gotten past this very same point.
Focus on Something Else
Doing mindless, repetitive work helps to put your focus elsewhere. Break your frustrating task into tiny pieces and work each one with full concentration. Celebrate progress. Frustration gets lost in concentration.
There are dozens of ways to get past frustration. Experiment and find what works for you. The key is not to give in. Keep pressing onward. You’ll get through this too. I’m rooting for you.