Summary: Learn how to curb common types of overthinking by focusing on what is most important.
Are you the kind of person who finds yourself walking through all future scenarios, confused as to why people around you aren’t thinking about all the things that could happen? Do you find yourself worrying about an upcoming event when everyone else says they’ll deal with it when they get there?
You’re probably an over-thinker. Sometimes, this can be incredibly helpful because you see potential issues before they come up and are able to avoid them. However, all of this thinking and worrying can also be exhausting and oftentimes unhelpful. One of the biggest issues with over thinking is that we worry about something that may never happen, resulting in us going through the negative emotions either unnecessarily, if it never happens, or twice if it does.
If you’re tired of spending too many waking hours worrying about what may or may not happen in the future, here are six ways to curb your over thinking tendencies.
- Understand that you’re not in control. Often we over-think because we want to control the situation in every way that we can. It’s important, however, to remember that there’s so much in life that is completely out of our control and we need to learn how to react well rather than try to force the outcome.
- Set short time limits for decisions. Decisions can be ROUGH for an over-thinker, and you could be going back and forth on something for months. Set a deadline to make a choice and get that weight off your shoulders.
- Take action. Along the lines of setting a deadline, sometimes it’s best to just take action rather than work through every possible outcome or way of doing something. If you’re feeling anxiety about anything, action is the key to move through those feelings and realize that everything is going to be fine.
- Will this matter down the road? Think about the obstacle in the long term - will what you’re worrying about matter in a month? Will it matter in a few years? Don’t waste your time on something that isn’t important.
- Spend time with non-over thinkers. Being around other people who worry just as much as you do will only send you into a tailspin. Spend time with people who don’t overthink and pay attention to how they’re able to let go of any worries and allow yourself to do the same when you’re with them.
- Focus on the present moment. The best way to get out of your head is to get into your other senses. Take a few deep breaths and focus in on the present moment and enjoy what’s going on around you. Consider a few minutes of meditation to help bring you back to the now.
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