Frustration is a mental state which can arise from the perception of being prevented from achieving a goal. It can result from a variety of circumstances, including a lack of resources, a lack of progress, or a lack of understanding. Frustration can lead to a range of physical and psychological reactions, including anger and aggression, or more passive reactions such as apathy and resignation (Rothbaum, Weisz, & Snyder, 1982).

The concept of frustration has been studied by psychologists for decades. Early research focused on the effects of frustration on behavior and emotions, as well as the role of cognitive processes in mediating the experience of frustration (Rothbaum et al., 1982). More recent work has explored the effects of frustration on decision making, creativity, and goal-directed behavior (Koole, 2009).

Frustration can have a wide-ranging impact on a person’s life. People who are frequently frustrated may find it difficult to maintain relationships, engage in productive work, or pursue meaningful activities (Rothbaum et al., 1982). Consequently, it is important to understand how to cope with frustration and manage it in a healthy manner.

One potential strategy for managing frustration is to focus on self-regulation. This involves evaluating and monitoring one’s own thoughts and emotions, and using strategies such as cognitive restructuring to change the way that one views and responds to frustration (Koole, 2009). Another approach is to use problem-solving strategies to identify and address the underlying causes of frustration (Rothbaum et al., 1982). Finally, people can also use coping strategies such as relaxation and mindfulness to reduce the intensity of their frustration (Koole, 2009).

In summary, frustration is an emotion that can result from various sources and have a range of psychological and physical consequences. It is important to understand how to manage frustration in a healthy manner, and strategies such as self-regulation, problem-solving, and coping can be used to do so.


Koole, S. L. (2009). The psychology of emotion regulation: An integrative review. Cognition and Emotion, 23(7), 1220-1248.

Rothbaum, F., Weisz, J., & Snyder, S. (1982). Changing the world and changing the self: A two-process model of perceived control. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 42(1), 5-37.

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