Neil Warnock admits he is having to recalibrate his ambitions as his Cardiff side continue to fly high in the Sky Bet Championship table.
The second-placed Bluebirds kept up the pressure on leaders Wolves as Joe Ralls' 84th-minute penalty secured a 1-0 win at Middlesbrough.
Cardiff were the dominant side for the majority of the game at the Riverside.
Boro boss Garry Monk felt Boro were unfortunate to lose, but accepts they are in the middle of a difficult spell.
The Teessiders have failed to win any of their last five matches, and find themselves in the bottom half of the table despite having started the season as the favourites for automatic promotion.
Boos rang around the Riverside at the final whistle, but Monk was keen to accentuate the positives even though Cardiff goalkeeper Neil Etheridge was only forced to make one save.
Monk said: "It's clearly a frustrating period for us. We knew going into the game it wasn't going to be one with a lot of chances because of the way Cardiff set up, so we knew we were going to have to show patience.<
"We were in the ascendency and if anyone was going to win, it looked like us, so it was a really harsh result. But that's the period we're in.
"We understand the fans' frustration, but what's very clear is that we stick together. It's easy to lose focus on what the players have done really well, even today there were a lot of good things.
"We're getting punished for errors, but we know the good things we're doing will get us through.
"There was a lot of positives in how we controlled the game and forced them back and they settled into that defensive mode.
"We're very close to getting to that situation where those things go for us.
When we do get through this period, you'll see a lot of positives."