How to break the toxic habit of overthinking
Do you find yourself dwelling more than acting or doing things? You must think before you act, but when you start thinking too much – you should realize that it’s bad. You might ask, how do I know if it’s too much? Well, if you analyze the same thoughts over and over again, instead of acting on it you should know that you are overthinking. Just like the name suggests.
Overthinking is mainly bad for two reasons, one because it stops you from taking an action, and two, it consumes a lot your energy and cripples your ability to make decisions. You would often find yourself in a loop of thinking and thinking over the same subject again and again. This halts your progress in life. In these situations, there are high chances that you might suffer from anxiety and lack of inner peace. In a study conducted at Yale, it was also found that overthinking leads to serious emotional distress.
As you free yourself of this toxic habit, you would become more efficient, and happier with your life. Here are 7 ways to stop overthinking:
- Analyze your day and thinking:
If you can recognize that you are overthinking – you, my friend have achieved the first step towards breaking this habit. Oftentimes, this habit is so natural that you don’t even realize when you’re doing it. Awareness is often the first step to breaking this habit. You need to notice yourself and understand how your mind processes things and situations. If you keep yourself occupied a thought process, of the things you can’t control – you are simply being unproductive.
- Examine Yourself:
Before you rush yourself to any decision, you need to realize and recognize the things that you are concluding for yourself. It is very easy to get carried away in the stream of negativity. Before you assume that the reason your significant other is not answering your call is that they’re with cheating on you, before making this judgment – you should acknowledge the level of absurdity in your thought process and how overthinking doesn’t make sense.
- Become Pro-active:
It is important to analyze and then proceeds to solve a problem, but if you don’t cross the stage of analyzing and you keep on dwelling on them, it isn’t helpful. You need to teach yourself to ask questions like what can do about it, rather than asking why that something happened.
Dwelling upon one single thing isn’t productive, but sometimes a slight reflection upon it can prove to be helpful. You can’t break a habit in one day. You would need time to change the way you perceive the problems. You can give yourself a quarter in an hour each day to think about the things that you want to. It doesn’t have to specific to anything or anyone. But, give yourself that time, but when the time is up, you have to move onto something more productive. If you see yourself falling into that pit again, you can just hold that thought.
You should realize that there are two kinds of problems in everyone’s lives. One is something that they can control and make good out of, and the other is something that can’t even remotely control and make a change to. You can train yourself to be more aware of the present and the things that you can control. This takes time and a lot of practice. But, eventually, it can decrease overthinking.
- Adapt to Situations:
No matter how much you ask someone, not to do that – chances are, they would be more inclined towards doing that. The same goes for your brain, asking it stop overthinking could result in overthinking. It is best if you can keep yourself busy. Being idle and a couch potato can worsen the situation. You need to adapt yourself to the situations by keeping yourself busy in an act of doing something.
- Rewire your Brain:
As you pay close attention to yourself and the way you think, it can help you to become more aware of your bad habits. Performing Yoga and Pranayama can help you to rewire your brain to think differently. Over time, you can build healthier habits that will help you to be stronger mentally.
Omkar Kulkarni is a self-proclaimed art appreciator, a certified film reviewer and someone’s favorite human being.