Frustration Breaks II: Bleeding Gums

My gums were in pain. Every time I flossed this one spot, they would bleed a bunch. After many days of this, I went to the dentist. She said to stop bothering it for a few days.


But it didn’t make sense to me. This gap in my teeth always catches food, and I couldn’t imagine not flossing it for even several days. I felt like it would get worse without cleaning. So I kept on flossing.

And soon I bled every time my sore, inflamed gums were touched — not just flossing! Finally, I gave my poor gums a break.

Why do we push through our frustrations when it only hurts us further?

It worked, of course! A few days later, my gums were back to normal and I could floss again (sans blood).

It seems so obvious now.

And yet, my first response is still to power through. Keep going. Brute force. If I keep trying harder, I will magically make up for my lack of progress.

When you have time for a break, you might not need one.

When you don’t have time for a break, you need it badly!

Now you are aware of it, and you will learn to realize it in the middle of your frustrations.

And you will be much better off for taking a frustration break to pause and refresh than if you just power on through counter-productively.

Frustration Breaks I: Wiring the Transmission
Frustration Breaks III: Walking for Solutions

Share a time when a frustration break helped you regroup — or would have helped!