Raising anything to its maximum capacity is great, but when it exceeds its maximum capacity, it leads to a problem. The same goes for overthinking, oversharing, overworking, overloving, and overtrusting.
Overthinking is bad because you end up creating problems that don’t exist and creating scenarios that will never happen. You may doubt your decisions and choices because you have a lot on your mind. But it’s not completely bad. Let’s move on to the things you need to know as an over-thinker.
1. The problem isn’t as big as you think it is.
You cause more harm to yourself by thinking more about the problem. In reality, it’s not as big as you think it is. The only issue that causes you more harm is the way you think about the problem. As Seneca once quoted:
“We Suffer More in Imagination Than in Reality.” —-Seneca
Example: If you have a presentation and you are worried about your performance, you will start overthinking too much and creating fake scenarios about your performance.
You will come up with scenarios like: people will laugh at you; you may make a mistake; the project is bad. This way of thinking is the only problem. I’ve learned to accept that I’ll never be perfect and give my best.
The best advice I gave myself was to shut up the fake feedback I create in my head when I’m in front of the audience.I always tell myself, “It doesn’t matter if my presentation is bad in someone’s eye; I’ll give my best.” This type of thinking has solved many problems.
2. Accept rejection.
As an over-thinker, the main reason most over-thinkers don’t dare to take their shot is self-rejection. You create false rejection scenarios that make you lose the motivation to dare to do something.
If you think you will be rejected for an opportunity, apply.
If you think that girl will reject you anyway, approach her anyway.
If you think your joke isn’t that funny, post it.
Never accept the false rejection created by overthinking. Research shows that our brain has a built-in negative bias that causes us to focus on bad things. It’s hardwired.
Now you can shift your thoughts to a positive perspective and start thinking more about the positive things that can happen.This will increase your confidence and help you see many different possibilities.
3. Embrace silence and observe your thoughts.
We are taught in school that the only way to solve a hard problem is to think more. But this way, it stays in school only. In life, most problems are solved with less thinking. In one of the famous quotes by Albert Einstein, he said:
“I think 99 times and find nothing. I stop thinking, swim in silence, and the truth comes to me.” —Albert Einstein
You need a clear mind to solve a complex problem. To achieve that, you need to swim in silence. You achieve that by observing your thoughts.
4. Critiquing yourself for past mistakes won’t change the future.
When you start overthinking about your mistakes and seeing repeated disasters, ask yourself, “How will this positively influence my future, or is there anything I can do to change the situation I’m in?”
If the answer is yes, take immediate action. If the answer is no, you can’t control it; let go of it.
5. Realise the power of the present.
Overthinking doesn’t make a better future or past. All you have is now. Take it from a different perspective:
Your future is three years from now. When that time comes, it becomes the present. To have a better future, you have to focus on the present moment. We live in the eternal now.
What you do in the present moment can be good for your future. Make peace with yesterday, let go of tomorrow, and grab hold of now.
6. Peace is found in accepting things you can’t control.
Regretting your mistakes won’t affect the past, and being anxious won’t change the future. You have to accept: imperfection; life as it is; your past.
Things you can’t control:
You don’t have to know everything or be the perfect person.
7. Health starts in your mind.
It doesn’t matter how healthy you eat, how often you hit the gym, or how many times you drink water.
If you have a negative mind, you will continue to view the world as negative, which will affect your life. The calibre of your thoughts serves as a barometer for true health. Start first with your mind.
8. Make decisions based on facts.
Don’t rush and make decisions based on the scenarios created by your mind. Most of them are false. If you are uncertain of something, ask people or research it. This will save you time and prevent false assumptions.
Don’t rely on the decisions that come from overthinking, but on the ones that include facts.