Instant Articles

Overcome Frustration: The Lens of Gratitude

Are you experiencing frustration with your business, team or a situation? Does the thought of quitting, retreating or the lack of focus blur your vision or purpose? Allow me to reframe frustration through the lens of gratitude! Perhaps you’re experiencing frequent thoughts of discouragement and uncertainty, and you’re longing for more in life and business? What if we explore a step to transform the meaning of frustration and flip the switch on those thoughts, to catapult you, your team and business into greater increase? What if your frustration is a knock of opportunity, setting you up for promotion and prominence?

“Show me someone who has done something worthwhile, and I’ll show you someone who has overcome adversity.”  ~ Lou Holtz


New Lens of Perspective

Let’s take a moment to reframe frustration and see through a growth catalyst lens! Let’s flip the switch, so to speak! What happens when someone sits on the other end of a seesaw? Their body weight launches you higher! Frustration may feel like a weight or a wall, but what if it’s possible that you’re simply being set up for great growth, connections, and innovation?

Think of your eye doctor who flips different lenses over your eyes asking, “number one or number two?” The doctor’s goal is corrective lenses to eliminate blurred vision and restore the vision! The blurred vision is a frustration, but not acknowledging it could lead to missing out on the gift of clear vision! What if we flip a new lens over frustration called gratitude? It’s possible now that with a new lens this will influence how we view, think, hear and speak about an event, situation or relationship.

Fire is the test of gold; adversity, of strong men.”  ~ Martha Graham


Growth Through Gratitude

What is gratitude? Gratitude is an expression, a value, or an appreciation for what a person has.

Gratitude is a transformed inner heart, a renewed mind perspective manifesting itself through our attitudes, character and choices. We all have heard the saying, an attitude of gratitude. Remember the picture of the eye doctor putting on corrective lenses for clear vision. Clear vision creates clarity, certainty and a confidence of direction! Clear vision allows us to see opportunities through the eyes of promise! What if we drop the lens of gratitude – a transformed perspective – over the frustration or adversity? A constant state, lens, or mindset of frustration or discontentment can foster unhealthy choices, redirecting the vision. Let’s harness this opportunity and explore possibilities and potential, flipping the meaning of frustration.

“As with the butterfly, adversity is necessary to build character in people.”  ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin


Gratitude is a Lens Cleaner

Those of us who wear glasses, sunglasses or contacts all have some form of lens cleaner. Without regular cleaning, the dirt and smudges can actually feed the frustration and influence our attitudes.

To assist in cleaning and restoring a thriving perspective, what if we intentionally place the lens of gratitude over our hearing, over what we read, and when around criticism, doubt or fear? What if we flip the view of all we take in, filtering out the negative, and instead choose to view it through the lens of gratitude? Steering and strengthening your vision and purpose can be like placing your hands on the clay, shaping new development, certainty, and unity, building an inspiring leadership culture!

“You’ll never find a better sparring partner than adversity.”  ~ Golda Meir


Art and Science of Leadership

In leadership, there is both an art side and a science side. Think of the art side as the heart-side. It’s like a pianist playing with their heart instead of their head! We experience their personality and body inflections; their soul is felt through the piano! We all understand how important it is to put our heart into something bigger than ourselves, flowing from the foundation within our soul. Gratitude activates a life-giving place in the heart where others experience a fountain of music! The science side of leadership is the important and technical how-to side of leadership. It’s more of the mechanical or knowledge side of leadership. Healthy leadership is combining the science side with the (ART) HEART-SIDE.


Steps of Action: Applying Gratitude

1. For the next seven days, counter negative thoughts by replacing them with thoughts of gratitude!

2. Consider what questions could you ask your team to foster a culture of gratitude.

3. Ask your team for one WIN for the day or week. This switches the focus to a positive, celebration culture!

4. Feed and fuel gratitude by asking curiosity questions. What feeds and fuels your team?

5. Consider writing daily WINS, repositioning focus on gratitude! You can look back at this like a rainy day note!


How We See Creates New Opportunity

The way we see an event and the meaning we attach to a situation, event, or even a frustration, can alter our capacity for creative solutions! The fact is, stuff happens; the meaning we attach to it can delay us or fuel our fire! Applying the lens of gratitude for your colleagues, teammates, and customers can greatly change our view of all relationships! What is possible if our systems and business culture overflow with gratitude? Think of how you feel when someone is grateful for you. Think of how you feel when someone expresses an act of kindness. Gratitude works like a magnet, attracting opportunity to the business. Consistently feeding a culture of gratitude will uplift attitudes and increase team efficiency!

A challenge only becomes an obstacle when you bow to it.”  ~ Ray Davis


What are the Possibilities with Frustrations?

For example, perhaps your current frustration is creating an internal tension. Look at the test as training! Ask questions about the frustration. How can I/we create through this frustration? What choice could be made to flip the switch? What new meaning can be attached during the frustration? For example, attach a new meaning to a “no” during sales. The temptation is to take a no personally, when it’s an opportunity to pivot, grow, and adjust your approach. The frustration is like a dashboard light giving you feedback! The meaning a sales person or a business leader attaches to a no can be a game changer!


The Seed from Adversity

The adversity has a seed potential to open up creativity, innovation and increase. Your core values will be like a GPS, defining and reminding you of your purpose, focus and what to say yes to. Look at adversity as a way to validate, affirm and develop greater effectiveness and efficiency!

Healthy core values applied during times of frustration and adversity can be like a pacesetter on a track leaping hurdles! Here is a perspective to consider: the current frustration is preparing you for a breakthrough, renaissance, a rebirth, a set up, a new launch!

“Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you’re doing the impossible.”  ~ Francis of Assisi


Resistance Builds Muscle

Think for a moment of when you desire to tone up and do so by doing push-ups, sit ups, stretching, and you start to experience resistance. The goal may be wellness, more energy, a healthier demeanor. It’s in the consistent resistance over time that your body responds by getting stronger and more defined! What if the resistance that you’re experiencing with an event, situation, or relationship could fuel personal and business development? What if, through applying the lens of gratitude, the resistance fuels greater team building, tenacity, and fortitude, creating greater customer and team retention?

“Life keeps throwing me stones. And I keep finding the diamonds.”  ~ Ana Claudia Antunes


New Habit: Celebrating Wins

One way to keep a team, business, family or yourself energized is continuously celebrating the wins, the victories, the milestones! Celebrating the forward growth, the small accomplishments and hitting goals fuels the inspiration! Another habit to consider is cultivating a culture of honor by cultivating transparency on a team through personal growth discoveries! This can start with the leader and filter into the organization. These transparent discoveries are from a place of overcoming victory, not a context of dumping. Being vulnerable does not mean a toxic daily dump!

Notice that cultivating a culture of honor with intention fuels positive attitudes, mindsets and awareness for growth! This starts an ecosystem that creates authentic connection on a team!  Celebrating one another’s overcoming victories keeps a team closer and creates an enjoyable work environment. Have a blast flipping the meaning of frustration and launching a new growth season!


TRUFORTH would be honored to explore the possibilities with your personal and business vision! Contact us at

You were born for greatness,

Ed Garner

CMC, Business Coach, Leadership Trainer, Speaker, Strategist, Coach Trainer, Consultant