What if I should, or could … Need to stop overthinking things?
Do you keep postponing things because of fear or dread around doing them? Or maybe you overthink the same issues over and feel like you are so far from answers? Stop Overthinking, it can be destructive and keep you feeling stuck. That is why it is essential to be aware of your more profound thoughts and feelings to overcome your thinking habits.
Our beliefs help to make up our thoughts, so if you are feeling negative, then it may be that you need to take a look at what is playing on repeat inside your belief system.
If you are looking for a change or clarity in your career or purpose, you will find our post on getting clarity most helpful.
Long term overthinking can lead to procrastination, which can develop into several behaviours like depression, low self-esteem, and anxiousness. When we focus on perfection, it only leads us down a tunnel of misery and disappointment. Things in life are never perfect, and being open to learning by making mistakes is how we grow. When we look for perfection in a partner or even ourselves, it just lines us up for failure.
If you are fearful of taking action towards your goals or things you want in life, for whatever reason, understand that what you genuinely desire fights against all your fears, doubts, and lack of esteem. This keeps you stuck in a cycle as your thoughts then conflict your emotions. Take a deep breath, step back, and take a snapshot of the bigger picture. Ask yourself what do you want in life, and what are the beliefs that are stopping you.
Why Do We Overthink?
Sometimes we overthink when we disconnect from our true selves. It can be when we are incredibly stressed out, depressed, or forget to trust ourselves. Overthinking can be a sign that there is discord within yourself and your self-esteem. Maybe you doubt yourself and your capabilities or have experienced something terrible in the past, keeping you stuck in fear. Get to the core of your problem, and 99% of the time, it will be fear-based.
Symptoms of Overthinking & Procrastination
- You feel drained all the time
- You find it difficult to sleep
- You’re scared of failing
- Changes in appetite eating less or using food as a comfort
- Low energy levels, feeling mentally exhausted
- You lose interest in creative tasks or things that once gave you pleasure
- You struggle to make a decision or take any form of action in almost all aspects of your life
- Easily bored with life
- You have uncertain goals
- Overwhelmed all the time
- It isn’t easy to concentrate
- Most of your beliefs about yourself or life are negative
- You are frustrated and feel stuck
- You worry all the time
Help with Overthinking
The first step to stop overthinking is to make a mental note that you are doing it. When you find yourself in the mindset of negative repetitive cycles, try to put your thoughts and emotions into perspective. Shift your thoughts onto paper and challenge the ideas you have. For example, say you have an opinion that you are not worthy of having something in your life that you desire or don’t know how to go after it. Firstly, think about the reasons why you don’t feel worthy of having it in your life. It might be a relationship or a job. Ask yourself, did you experience something from your past that led you to believe you are not worthy of this? Break it all down and address your thoughts and fears until you get to the real issue’s root. Then you can work on changing your mindset and building your confidence.
Psychologists and authors Bob Lipton & Lisa Macallen have paired up to dedicate some time to write a few books on the topic.
Their successful professional experience has helped many people overcome repetitive thought patterns, which also led them to write their first book, ‘Overthinking, Get Clarity’.
They provide an informative guide with useful techniques to use to overcome this ‘thinking’ habit. In one of their books
‘Stop Overthinking, Rebalance Yourself’; they provide ways to help increase your confidence and declutter your messy mind.
Techniques to Use in Dealing with Overthinking
Focus on the issues of the problems you are having and look for solutions. These will come in the form of good feelings. Please don’t dwell on the why’s and as yourself what I can do about it. This makes you feel more at peace. Another thing to try is creating space for yourself. Try incorporating a daily meditation practice. It will benefit you in many ways. Think of all the information our minds consume in a day, either directly or indirectly. Shutting out the noise and making time for peace to sit with our thoughts and feelings helps us think clearer. Stop thinking about what can go wrong and start thinking about what will work. Positivity is a large factor when it comes to what we attract in life. When emitting happy vibes, then happiness returns in many other forms. Satisfaction is a habit, and you can train yourself to become satisfied, our article on happiness will help, and we also have a free guide for you to read and put to use.
Bad Habits can be Reprogrammed to Stop Overthinking
The good news is that with time, effort, and work, you can train your worried mind to look at things from a new perspective. Firstly, STOP the thought when it comes to your mind. Secondly, try REPLACING the view. For example, if I had a negative opinion about myself, I would acknowledge it and then tell it that it was no longer welcome. Then I would replace it with a positive thought. Self-talk is so critical in keeping positive and being successful in life. You need to have your own back and want to make the change more than anything else. YouTube has a multitude of reprogramming downloads to listen to before you go to sleep. They say it takes 21 days to build a habit, so I would start exercising this.
How to Help with Procrastination
- If you find yourself procrastinating, ask yourself if you make the situation more significant than it needs to be by dwelling on it. Maybe you have an essential exam to study for, but would rather be outside with friends.
- Keeping clear goals with a focus on how to get there can help you. Good results mean you need to put in the effort. Part of the reward is the satisfaction of knowing you worked hard for something you were able to achieve.
- Understand that everything in life comes with sacrifice, and to excel at something, you have to allow other aspects less time.
- Making a list of things you want to achieve each day or week acts as a guide. I usually do a weekly plan of what I want to have done and break it down into days, according to hours I want to work.
- Treat yourself each time you achieve a small goal; it’s vital to acknowledge your progress.
- Minimize your distractions throughout the day. This can include mobile phones or social media. Set a time frame for your goals; this encourages you to work under pressure to get the job done.
- Tell your friends about your goals and have them check in on you to help motivate you.
- Create a clear space for work or environment for you to be in
When you feel like you have accomplished something, it gives you a satisfying feeling that you will want to repeat at the end of the day.
If you are looking for a more detailed guide on Stop Overthinking, I would highly recommend Authors Bob Lipton & Lisa MacAllen. They currently have two books, both are well written and easy to follow. There is “Overthinking” as a starters guide and “Stop Overthinking” for a more advanced level.
Their covers are well distinguishable, and you can purchase these online in paperback format, and soon to be available on kindle, or audio as well.