Frustration is an emotion that we feel and experience since childhood. Even when we are very young, we feel sad or angry because we wanted that treat that they deny us, but that is only the beginning, because as we grow we feel it on countless occasions. Frustration is that emotion we have when we want or desire something that we cannot have . We feel disappointed, sad, angry and, above all, disappointed, because the object of our desire was something we expected, but suddenly we see that it is not possible to have it. Sounds like you, right?

Each person has a different reaction to frustration: some cry, others scream, others try again, others throw in the towel , others try to pay for it with someone … But, although experiencing frustration makes us feel bad, it is not a negative thing. It is a very important emotion, which plays a key role in our adaptation to the world and our way of relating to others, which is not easy to manage.

Tolerate frustration, necessary to mature

Getting frustrated is very positive in the long run, because it teaches us to relate to the world. It helps us understand the limits, which are ours and those of others. Above all, during childhood, we can feel very sad when a child is upset when they cannot have something they want, for example going to the park, buying a toy or watching the pictures they want on television. But it is very important that you learn that you cannot get those kinds of rewards right away, because as you grow older you will see that life is not going to give you everything as parents do.

The same is true at school. A child can do a task that the teacher sends badly , and become frustrated by it, but in this way they will learn in which aspects they should try more for the future. The educational environment is an excellent setting that prepares you on this path of life that begins at a very young age.

When we are adults, we see that there are many situations in which we have to learn to accept that they are not what we want . Thus we also learn to negotiate, when our desires and interests collide with those of other people, and also to make decisions, since we will have to analyze the possible options to choose, in a rational way, the one that best matches what we want, what we need and what we need. what we can do. And it is very important to differentiate these three aspects: we can wish for something, but we may need it or not, and we may have the capacity to achieve it or not.

How frustration helps us in our personal relationships

Learning to tolerate frustration helps us establish more satisfying social relationships. If we weren’t able to take no for an answer, or we always wanted everything to go according to our wishes, who would be able to live with us? This creates conflicts in the family, also between friends, and is very dangerous when it comes to establishing relationships as a couple.

Frustration allows us to respect and understand the limits that others place on us, but also to understand why we must also have limits. We have already talked about this topic in the article Setting limits to others will make you be closer to them , and we talk about healthy limits. For example, if you have a friend who constantly needs your attention, she must understand that you cannot be aware of her day and night. That is a limit. If she doesn’t have a tolerance for frustration, she won’t want to respect him, and friendship can either hurt you or break down.

Thus, tolerating frustration allows for healthier and more respectful interpersonal relationships. It will also show us the importance of sacrifice and solidarity to help others, as it makes us more empathetic. Thus, the relevance of learning to experiment and tolerate frustration is not only a matter of maturity in the sense that in adult life we ​​have to do things that we do not want in areas such as work, it is necessary on a social level.

To learn to manage frustration, we must live it

To learn to tolerate and manage frustration in a positive way, it is basic and imperative to live it, experience it. For this reason, a lot of emphasis is placed on allowing children to go through these frustrating situations , to learn to wait for rewards, or to know on many occasions that they will not arrive. Everything adapted to their age, of course, we cannot expose them to extreme situations . But that’s how they learn, thanks to what we older people teach them, to implement strategies that allow them to move on even without what they want so much.

Sometimes this is very complicated, there are children and adults who do not have any tolerance to this type of situation, and in those cases it is necessary that they receive psychological help, because they will be taught to manage that emotion. Of course, through their experimentation and putting in place those strategies that they are learning. Because frustration cannot be ignored, we cannot pretend that nothing is happening, but we have to live it, feel it, and wait for it to happen. We will surely get valuable learning from it.

Then we can start an analysis plan. That is, when faced with frustration, we can learn to analyze the situation to find out the reasons why we cannot obtain what we want. Perhaps that way we will see if there are limits that we cannot jump (for example, as much as I want to, I cannot be taller, nor can I go to the Moon, nor do I make sure that my grandmother is dead). But we can also see what we can do, that is, frustration can make us want to change the situation if we have a chance (for example, they haven’t given me the desired job because I don’t know English, so I’m going to sign up for classes). If it is something related to the relationship with another person, sometimes frustration is telling us that there is some topic that must be discussed to understand the position of the other person. 

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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