Do you often feel you’re not able to relax? Does it feel like your brain won't shut off or, maybe you keep thinking of all the alternate scenarios or things you could have done differently?
Worrying and overthinking happens often in human experience, but when left unchecked can adversely affect mental well-being. Dwelling on the same thoughts may even increase your risk of certain mental health conditions, according to a 2013 study.
It is believed that overthinking would cause your mental health to decline. And then as mental health declines, you start to overthink more. It's just like a vicious downward spiral.
When one indulges in overthinking, the judgments get cloudy and very vague, elevating the stress levels in the body. One spends too much time pondering over the negative thoughts and it becomes difficult to act. If all of this seems familiar to you, read on to find ways to free yourself from overthinking patterns.
Be aware and conscious
Learn to notice when it is happening. You have to realise that your mind has already begun to rerun those events over and over, and it is indulging in second-guessing everything- ranging from what people thought or are predicting that things you cannot control will go wrong. The particular moment of awareness could be formed as the seed of the change you want to make in your life.
Change how you view challenges
Whenever you are met with a challenge or have failed in the past or you're just apprehensive, try to just change the way you view things, remember that just because things didn't work out the previous time, doesn’t mean that this has to be the outcome every time.
Overthinking stems from the emotion of fear. When you focus on all the negative things that might happen, it's obvious to become paralyzed. Next time when you see yourself in that situation, stop yourself then and there. Visualize all the things that can go right and maintain those thought patterns. Distract yourself with activities that will help you, such as practising meditation, dancing, exercising, indulging in new hobbies, practising gratitude. This can help you shift the perspective and shut yourself down from overanalyzing things.
Put a timer to work
Schedule and set timers for five minutes and give yourself that space to think and analyse the situations well. Once the timer goes off, spend the next 10 minutes with a pen and paper, writing down all the things that keep worrying and stressing you. When 10 minutes are over, throw the paper out and indulge in something else. This will help you venting out your thoughts, gaining a perspective and also better time management.
Keep The Focus On Active Problem-Solving
Dwelling on the problems isn’t helpful at all, but looking for alternate solutions would help. You have to forget the whys of the situation and concentrate more on the whats. Shift your perspective.
Instead of thinking about why the particular thing is happening and also running all the possible negative outcomes over and over in your mind, engage yourself in thinking about what you can do to resolve or rescue from such a situation. Ask yourself what steps will help you to learn from the mistakes and also can help you avoid a future problem.
Accept your best.
We can’t predict the future. If you spend the present moments worrying about the future, you are robbing yourself of the present. Spending time about what could happen in the future is useless. The fear that forms the basis of overthinking is often that one isn't good enough, or the other person does it better. But just learn that, once you've given an effort at doing your best, accept it as success is not in your hands, you've done what you could do.
Overthinking can happen to anyone, but if you have a great system for dealing with it, it will help you in the longer run. You can always look out for various ways that would work for you to minimise stress and overthinking. You can take HappiLIFE screening to get a detailed insight into the various facets of mental wellbeing which will help you to know more about your various strengths and areas of improvement. You can also gain access to our content library and look at various articles and videos that can help you in minimising overthinking.