Psychologists have yet to come into an agreement on what causes the process of over-thinking. There may be a lot of different factors, such as: the way we are raised, what we have been through, and most of all how our brain accepts the reality and reacts toward it. Anyway, they all agree that an over thinker is either living in the past or in the future. Hence, the present is almost inexistent and it only serves for over thinking everything.
In order to move to a happier and healthier life, find listed below some tips on how to stop overthinking:
Create awareness– sometimes we are so much into overthinking that it becomes part of our own being, and we are so immersed in our thoughts that we are not aware how serious the situation actually is. Once you are aware or your own flaws, you can easily control or beat them. So, this very first step is a vital one. Only when you admin being an over thinker, you can do helpful things for yourself. After this, there are two suggestive steps to follow:
- Every time that you realize that you are overthinking, reminder yourself that you are doing it AGAIN! So, take a step back, breath and think about all the results that over thinking have brought to you until now and in general they are bad results or conditions.
- Be the observer of your thoughts, because in this way you can hear your inner voices and ideas. If you can understand your own thinking, you can overcome it. By knowing how unnecessary it is, you can let the fear go.
Do not assume– assumptions are things that we accept for true, or as very possible to happen, without proofs or any logical consistency. They are related to over thinking in two ways:
- When we assume we pretend to know the final result a priori. Then even if the result of that specific issue we have been thinking about is totally different, we will find it very difficult to accept and know for true. Unconscionably our brain prepares us for a specific ending, and then we face obstacles in admitting the reality because it is not the same as our expectations.
- Assuming enforces us to explanations and justifying, we will spend much more time thinking because of assuming. In both cases, even when assumptions may coincides the later facts, or even when assumptions are proved wrong, our brain will never stop assuming, sometimes assuming about what we have already assumed.
Do not plan too much– Planning is a very essential and helpful habit, but often complicates the life. Overthinkers are used to plan, even the details, every second of the day, and most importantly to plan things that are totally out of their control. We are aware that is not that easy to stop planning, but it is not that hard too! Distract yourself from planning, stick to any hobby, and stay engaged to your family, friends or job. Not everything needs to be planned, and not everything that is planned will succeed.
Keep a diary of your successes– this practical step is very recommended because it helps being aware of success, too. Every time you achieve a goal, or something positive happens to you, write it down. In this form you can easily stay committed to a good attitude. Hereby, instead of over thinking you can check a list of your achievements. To celebrate accomplishments is always an outstanding step to build new ones.
Being mindfulness-this can really be helpful to reduce anxiety and overthinking. Mindfulness is non-judgmental focus on present; observe your thoughts and emotions without judging them for good or bad. Benefits of this practice are a healthy mind and body, and most meaningful one for over thinkers: a focus on present feelings without any concern. Instead of collecting endless thoughts or emotions is better to try and focus your mind in mindfulness. As more as your practice this form of setting your mind free of over thinking, as more you will set it free.
As you have may noticed until now, during the text I have used so many times the word ‘’we’ instead of ‘’you’’, that because I am myself an over-thinker! Since I have spent so much time of my life over-thinking, searching for over-thinking, looking for advices on how to stop it, or at least how to reduce it, I am aware that it is not as simple as it may seem for the others.