Overthinking And Its Scenarios

Scenario One

You know those discussions you have in a moment of the day, that just haunt you until you go to bed?  You’re probably overthinking.

You may even manage to sleep, but the levels of stress are so high that there's no quality in your sleep. When you wake up:  sleeping didn’t really felt like resting.

You wake up and the first thing that comes to your mind is the past scenario, the words you’ve spoken, the words you have heard.

You are certainly overthinking.

Scenario Two:

Or, maybe, you just have a decision to make. Little or big.

Let’s pick a big decision. You know is a decision that has a high impact on your life, several years to come. And you feel the weight of responsibility for your choices. And it’s scary. And you start thinking in circles, on those possibilities you have, and you can’t come to a conclusion. At a certain point, every choice seems bad, seems to lead to a bad place.

You certainly overthinking. And not getting to any decision. Or worst: leaving the decision to “destiny”, to hands of others…

Two scenarios here were presented as examples. There are more, of course.

But overthinking might be a phase or a pattern behavior of a person’s way of thinking.  Overthinking might be absurdly paralyzing to a point you can’t decide whether to choose if you want to wear blue or red.

1. What is Overthinking?

Overthinking Versus Problem Solving Versus Self-Reflection

Planning stages of a (life) project and predict challenges on the way and possible outcomes: that is not necessarily overthinking. This is planning.

Having a problem, spend some time thinking about it from the perspective of finding or conceive a solution is not overthinking: is problem-solving.

Spending some time reflecting on your behavior when involved in some disturbing situation and thinking of ways of doing better to deal with similar situations in the future? This isn’t overthinking: is self-reflection and allows you to know yourself better

To put it in a simple way Overthinking happens when you think about something too much, for too long, to a point of energy draining. It gets so exhausting that all you can think of is: I gotta find peace of mind.

Overthinking is a consequence of ruminating about the past or worry about the future.

When you overthink something, you go through an inner struggle because your focus is on the problem instead of drawing your energy into solutions.

Sort of resuming: if you’re not canalizing your energy to solutions, you enter a spiraling circuit.

Your levels of stress rise, you’ll have clouded judgments, your creativity to see out-of-the-box solutions will reduce. Overthinking will rob your power to make decisions or induce you to make poor decisions… And poor decisions create more useless stress in your life and the circle repeats itself: spiralling.

2. When To Know Is Happening In Order To Control It

When to know that it’s happening? The very first physical sign? You get anxious. Heartbeat accelerates, you get that nutshell-feeling on your throat. It’s possible that you don’t even know why…

Why you recurrently think about the same?

Why does it get you anxious?

Why? It happens because you’re focused on the problem.

Focus on the solution and fix it.

You’ll find on this link other signs of overthinking: https://www.inc.com/amy-morin/10-signs-you-think-too-much-and-what-you-can-do-about-it.html

 If you’re Rumination on the past

… Be kind with yourself: you did the best you could, with what you had: information, emotional ability, or emotional estate.

… Once you’ve taken so much time (a huge amount of time) to think it through make sure you learned something about Your Self.

.... Make sure you've learned: what you like, what don’t like if you’re too reactive, how can you improve on yourself to do better in the future... The part that you control is yourself - You and how you react to things. Focus on what you can control: yourself and your action. And give it closure.

… Mistake? Or experiencing life? A mistake is only a mistake when you learn nothing from it, and keep repeating it thing, and keep having the same unwanted repeated outcomes. Apart from that? Those are life experiences.

 If you’re Worried about the future...

… As Dr. Joe Dispenza would say in one of his videos: “The best way to predict your future is to create it…”

… Of course, creation means action. But the action doesn’t have to be impulsiveness: to go from a paralyzing overthinking to that other extreme of impulsiveness, might not be the best strategy.


... Figure out what you want, the outcome big-picture you want: then puzzle it. Piece by piece. Little thing after little thing - having the big picture in mind. Consistently. Daily.

… Keep in mind that you cannot control others. Surprises might come on the path, of course, challenges… That’s when you test the strength of the vision of you in the future: it will keep grounded. Trust yourself that you’ll solve, overcome, bypass, overfly, whatever it comes your way. Trust yourself. Believe.

3. How To Stop It, The Overthinking

Overthinking can be considered a mental illness if evolves into depression symptoms, anxiety, persistent anger, and feelings of emotional misery.

If overthinking is  followed by :

  • the consumption (addiction) of drugs or other harming addictive substances – as an attempt to run away from reality or have an “anesthetic-life-troubles-effect” ;
  • disabling you to experience life with all your five (six?) senses and awakened presence;

… In these cases, a therapist should be seriously considered.

If that’s not the case, you should consider self-therapy moments (which is what I do):

  1. Watering the plants. Has such a mind-soothing effect: indescribably immediate.
  2. If you’re not the plant-carer kind, try contact with nature: sea, mountain, river. Exercise and breathe out in the open. Nature can be very healing.
  3. Meditate. The simple act of bringing awareness into your body, to of your breathing, feeling your heartbeat, it's by itself, self-regulating. When meditation is practiced over time it reduces, pain, depression, stress, and anxiety.
  4. If you think that meditation is not for you, too still, don’t have the patience to be that quiet: learn one kind of breathwork.

Breathwork is an active meditation that involves breathing and repeated movements with the stomach and lower belly: it won't feel that still. And most important: it works to calm the mind. Especially before bedtime. But you can learn any simple technique to use whenever you feel it coming.

One of the major problems of overthinking is that you don’t see it coming: when you realize, you’re in it, feeling its consequences.

Meditation helps you observe your thought as a habit. That enables you to identify what thoughts and consequent emotions took you to overthink and overwhelming.

Once you identify your thoughts, the inner chat, then you can go to that other phase of changing the pattern of those thoughts, resignification them, changing the quality of your inner conversation.

Think of yourself as a life-improving project.

Say “ I am”, only if empowers you. Any behavior characteristic that you have and you do not like is possible to be changed.

And comparing yourself to others is a dead-end misery.

There will always exist people in the world that are better at something: richer, more beautiful/handsome, more talented at something…

The list never ends and many comparing features are subjective: it depends on personal perspectives, which are compromised by personal experiences and cultural environment...

So: if any comparison is due, is to the person you were yesterday…

"We were born to be real.

Not to be perfect."

by unknown


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