Why feeling frustrated is a good thing

August 11, 2019 Sandra Dawes

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a while and have finally gotten around to doing it! 🙂 I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching lately. I’ve been reflecting on my life and the times where I have been frustrated, restless and unhappy. When I think back to situations in my life where I’ve had this feeling, I realize that those emotions happened for a reason.

When we’re comfortable, whether that’s in our jobs, our relationships or life in general, there’s no reason to change, is there? It goes back to the saying “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. What I’ve come to realize is that just because things are good, it doesn’t meant that they can’t be better. I think that’s why there are times where the status quo no longer satisfies us.

When life doesn’t bring us the joy we’re used to experiencing, it can be a frustrating time. We want to feel better but often don’t know where to start. Some of us will accept this as our new normal. Others will choose to find out what’s missing and what they can do to bring more joy back into their lives. That’s why I think that feelings of frustration, lack of fulfillment or any other negative emotion are a good thing! They challenge us to dig deep and figure out what we can do to bring more happiness into our lives.

There are lots of reasons why these emotions bubble up to the top. Things happen and we can get so caught up in dealing with something that we stop making time for the things that used to bring us joy. Maybe we’ve convinced ourselves we don’t have time to indulge in things that bring us happiness. We might have fallen into the trap of believing that being a responsible adult and making time for fun can’t go hand in hand. Perhaps we’ve simply chosen to stop making joy a priority.

Whatever the reason is, once you’ve accepted that the life you’re living isn’t working for you anymore, you get to choose what you’re going to do about it! Many of us forget that we always have a choice to do things differently. Just because you’ve been doing something for the last 2 years, that doesn’t mean you’re obligated to continue to do those things if they no longer make you happy or bring you joy.

This isn’t to say that you should quit your job tomorrow and fly overseas on a one way ticket! Take the time to think about the last time you truly felt good about life and choose to do one thing from that time and see if it makes you feel better. Sign up for a cooking class, learn a new language, or start saving to travel to that one place that’s been on your dream list forever. Sometimes it’s about making a plan to do something that you have always wanted to do, but simply never gave yourself permission to try.

I used to feel defeated when I would no longer feel satisfied with the direction my life was headed in. I now realize that every time those emotions come up, it’s because I’ve gotten too comfortable. I’ve stopped stretching myself, pushing myself outside my comfort zone and started to fall back into old habits.

As I become more self-aware, once those feelings start percolating, I know what I can do to stop me from falling into a rut. I review my mission and vision. I take a look at my bucket list and update it. I challenge myself to do something that I’ve been putting off because I wasn’t ready to do the work. Once I start taking action, those feelings of frustration and unhappiness subside and I’ve got something to focus my energy on in a way that will contribute to my continued growth. Are you with me?

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