Overthinking is like a sinkhole that gets us badly trapped. Tragic imagery, right? But that’s what we keep doing to ourselves. We let ourselves get trapped into the sinkhole of overthinking.
There’s a point when thinking turns into overthinking. When do we cross that bridge between thinking and overthinking?
Overthinking to me would mean repeatedly thinking about something that is beyond our control. When we plan, we think about the things under our control, the things we have to do. When we start thinking about the things beyond our control, we only add to the stress and anxiety and that is when we enter the overthinking stage.
When I catch myself slipping into the overthinking stage, here’s what I do that might help you as well :
1. Journaling or talking to someone
Our minds take in a lot of information. There’s a whirlwind of thoughts, all disorderly and scattered. Journaling aims to bring order in our thoughts.
You will notice a certain calmness and clarity of thought after writing. You can jot down words, make tree diagrams, do whatever that works for you. The aim is find an outlet to calm the racing thoughts so even if you achieve that by talking to someone, then do that.
2. Do the next thing you can.
After you have taken the time to journal and after assessing the situation with some clarity if you think there’s something that you can do about it, then do it.
If we think we have a solution in front of us then we should focus all our energy in doing it rather than worrying and overthinking because if there’s something we can do, then why worry?
3. Realizing that overthinking is not helpful.
If something is beyond your control then overthinking is absolutely of no use. If you find yourself in a situation where there’s nothing else that you can do, when you know that you have done your current best and the outcome is something that you have no control over, then why worry? It would only cause avoidable anxiety and stress.
It’s extremely necessary to catch yourself when you start to overthink and follow the above steps in order to get yourself off the track of unnecessary overthinking and relax.
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