OVERTHINKING

Thought patterns. What are they, and why should we think about them? Well, the reason is not hard to understand. The way we think has a huge impact on our behavior and our emotions, and it can make the difference between a happy life and a miserable one. Some people think fast, others think slow. Some think in pictures, others think in sounds. Some see the glass half-full, others see it half-empty. Some can direct their thoughts on purpose, while others have little control over their minds.

Recently, a lot of my clients have been telling me that they are in the habit of “overthinking.” It’s an interesting word, because it can mean more than one thing.

Overthinking can refer to a mind that races, speeding from one thought to another. Or it can mean a mind that can’t stop going over and over a troublesome thought. Others say that overthinking is their attempt to analyze a personal problem logically; this may work at times, but in the realm of human relationships and emotions, it is rarely useful.

 Regardless of what it means to any given individual, overthinking can create confusion, which only serves to intensify the existing problem. 

It’s wise to address the habit of overthinking for a number of reasons. First of all, it won’t just disappear. Second, it complicates the attempt to find solutions. Third, it makes it easy to avoid addressing the real problem. Instead of focusing on finding solutions, the overthinker focuses on side issues that may not be connected to the problem. They go off on tangents, they talk in generalities and go around in circles, instead of actually talking about their desires, feelings and needs. Nothing gets done. It’s a great waste of time and energy.

So, what’s to be done? First of all, accept the fact that it’s a problem. That’s number one. Then determine to do something about it. Examine ways to do just one thing differently. When you are stressed, just wait. Take a step back and notice whether you have been emotionally triggered. Notice whether you are making assumptions or jumping to conclusions. Ask yourself whether the problem is within your power to change. In your daily life, develop habits that help you feel calm and balanced: exercise, proper sleep, laughter and meditation, for example.

In some cases, professional counsel might be indicated. If you have difficulty remembering to stick with healthy habits, and you would like to get an outside point of view, I would be honored to be of service. The phone number is (219) 309-3928.

For more on the working of the mind click here Negativity.

Thanks for reading!