Do You Tend to Overthink?
Overthinking isn’t always a bad thing on the surface, but it certainly can turn into a bad habit. While everyone overthinks occasionally, some people are troubled with an endless stream of negative thoughts all the time.
Chronic overthinkers rehash conversations they had yesterday, second-guess every decision they made, and imagine catastrophic results all day long.
When you overthink, your judgment gets cloudy and your stress becomes elevated.
You spend too much time in the negative.
It can become difficult to act because these thoughts tend to leave you paralyzed for extended periods of time.
Thinking too much prevents you from getting anything done. And it wreaks havoc on your mood.
Worrying and overthinking are part of the human experience, but when left unchecked, they can take a toll on your well-being.
So, what’s an overthinking person to do? These tips can help you move in the right direction to finally free yourself from overthinking.
Habit #1: Let Go of Control
Being in constant fight-or-flight mode makes us more anxious, and getting out of that mentality requires letting go of our need for control.
When our brain is in this state, it’s exhausting and desperate to create certainty, so it tries to do just that. We usually try to accomplish this in one of three ways.
We jump into decisions quickly without thinking through the consequences because we want to “lock” something in.
We become paralyzed and do nothing at all.
We rush to assumptions to fill the gaps in our knowledge.
None of these responses leave us feeling more certain. In fact, they typically end up making us more stressed.
So, what’s the best solution?
1. Identify Your Trigger Points
Does your friend’s success lead you to question your own life?
Do you anticipate rude behaviors from people due to past experiences?
Start experimenting with methods that prevent you from going down into a worry spiral, such as deep breathing and self-affirming talk.
2. Dump Your Feelings
Emotions can be overwhelming, and often, we try to avoid the negative ones.
One way to process your feelings is to write it all down and do a “mental dump” of what you’re thinking.
3. Accept Uncertainty
Life is not always going to go according to plan.
There will be times when you won’t control the outside factors in your life, but the one thing you can control is yourself and your reactions to your situation.
Habit #2: Challenge Constant Negative Thoughts
Overthinking can become such a habit that you don’t even recognize when you’re doing it.
Start paying attention to the way you think, so you can become aware of the problem.
It’s easy to get carried away with negative thoughts.
Sometimes, our emotions are so powerful they inhibit us from making sound decisions we can be proud of.
Remember your emotions will interfere with your ability to look at situations objectively.
Take a step back and look at the evidence:
- What evidence do you have that your thought is true?
- What evidence do you have that your thought isn’t true?
- What is happening in this present moment to make you believe these things?
When you’re replaying events in your mind over and over, or worrying about things you can’t control, acknowledge that this isn’t productive.
Thinking is only helpful when it leads to positive action.
Habit #3: Focus on Problem Solving Actions
Dwelling on your problems isn’t helpful, but searching for solutions is.
Sometimes, you might go over the same thoughts repeatedly because you aren’t taking any concrete actions about a certain situation.
Instead of letting your thoughts ruin your day, let your feelings help you make better choices that will result in better actions.
Taking action enables you to be more proactive and less reactive.
You can take action by jotting down steps to take that will help you reach your goals.
This will get you out of your head and channel your energy into taking actionable steps.
If the problem is something you have some control over, consider how you can:
- Prevent the problem in the future
- Challenge yourself to identify potential solutions
- Focus on the results of those solutions, like a much happier you!
Let’s Retrain Your Brain Together
Overthinking is something that can happen to anyone.
Paying attention to the way you think can help you become more aware of your mental habits.
When you have a supportive life coaching system, to help you deal with those problems, you can more than likely conquer negative, anxious, stressful thoughts and turn those habits into something useful, productive, and effective in your life.
Whether improving your social life or simply being happier daily, we offer you the proven framework and support you need to improve the quality of your life today.
Learn more about our private one-on-one coaching services, train your brain to think differently. Over time, building healthier habits will help you build the muscle you need to become mentally stronger!