In business – and often in our personal lives – frustration and worry go hand in hand. We get frustrated that our efforts are not receiving the acclaim that we believe we deserve and we get worried that, if things continue like that, we’re either not going to be the success we want to be or, worse, as a recent survey reported, that we won’t have enough money to do even some of the simple things we want to do.

It could be said that frustration and worry are part of the human condition – but they’re not. They are an intrinsic part of human conditioning – not the human condition itself. They are the product of the “normal” mind, which subconsciously dwells in the past and consciously is bombarded by distractive and useless thought. Indeed, frustration and worry are no more than useless thoughts.

Psychological research indicates that the normal mind is only 1% invested in the present moment – the only time and place we actually have. The same research indicates that the greater part of our mental power, our subconscious mind, is focused on what we “learned” during our formative years – the years during which our view of the world, how it works and our place in it, was constructed for us by the people and events we encountered. This is the period of our lives in which we developed our view of ourselves, our strengths and our weaknesses. This past, long gone, is the subconscious mind’s constant obsession and automatically creates our routine, repetitive, automatic behaviour.

At the same time, research indicates that our conscious minds play host to some 50,000 random thoughts each day – of which frustration and worry are two of the most common. As a result, our mental energy is channelled into dead-end streets which take us to none of the places that we really want to go in life – be it in business, in our careers or in our personal lives. We become trapped by our own thoughts.

There is a wealth of anecdotal evidence which is more than suggestive of the extent to which worrying about an undesirable outcome or event actually brings the dreaded outcome about. Florence Schovel-Shinn, in her bestseller The Game of Life and How to Play It (first published in 1926 and still a bestseller!) gives us everyday examples of the manner in which the mind’s focus leads us towards the things we most wish to avoid. And it was Calvin Coolidge – all the way back in the 1920s too – who suggested that there was little point in becoming frustrated, stating that the only thing that is guaranteed to bring about success is perseverance. Add to this the evidence of Madrid University’s business school that suggests that enormously successful business people are those who have been frustrated by failure again and again – only to persevere and rise above that frustration.

Frustration and worry have no place in your life – assuming, that is, that you want to be happy and successful. And, yet, they are with us often, peppering away at our minds, tripping us up in our daily efforts to create better lives for ourselves. They are an integral part of the way our minds work, as a result of the conditioning that was deeply impressed upon us during our formative years. That being the case, how can we rid ourselves or such self-defeating, useless thoughts?

Well, we can’t – not entirely – they will creep up on us and bite us with annoying regularity. What we can do, however, is to see these thoughts for what they are – simply useless thoughts that are a drain on our energy which we could so much more wisely invest. As a means of realising these thoughts for what they are, the development of a clearer, more present, state of mind is not only a great help but is, in fact, the most important tool we can have at our disposal in working towards the creation of the lives we really want – ultimately free of frustration and worry.

A clear and present mind means just that – clear of useless thought (when the thoughts arise notice them and watch them – like all else in life, they will pass on just as surely as they arose) – and present in the present moment. Clarity means that we can better focus on the important things that we must do today – if we allow frustration and worry to prevent us doing those all important things, then we only have ourselves to blame. Presence of mind means that we become more present to the moment – our subconscious no longer able to fully focus on formative years long gone and our conscious mind less likely to entertain useless thoughts – but, more than that, it imbues us with what all really successful people have in abundance – presence.

To rid yourself of the effects that worry and frustration have on your life, start each day by practicing clarity and presence of mind. Even a few quiet moments of meditation (there are hundreds of ways to meditate – find one that suits you) will set you off on the right track for a day of action, as distinct from normal reaction, which will lead you towards a happier, more successful, carefree life.

Author's Bio: 

Willie Horton, an Irish ex-accountant and ex-banker who has been working as a success coach to business leaders and sports people since 1996, has been living his dream in the French Alps since 2002. Each week his weekly Free Self-Help Video Seminar is received by thousands of people around the world. His acclaimed Self Help Online Workshop is being followed by people on four continents - they say that it's life-changing. More info: