You can find yourself replaying practically every idea in your head at times. You may be so preoccupied with even little decisions and “what-ifs” that you become paralyzed with inaction. Overthinking is what experts call it. This article will help you analyze and overcome overthinking and its symptoms.
It’s natural to become “in your head” at times. Chronic overthinking, on the other hand, might disrupt your sleep, job, relationships, health, or other parts of your daily life. Do you believe you are an overthinker? Here’s everything you need to know.
How to Recognize When You’re Overthinking
It may be stressful to think about all the things you could have done better, to second-guess every decision you make, and to imagine all the worst-case possibilities in life. Overthinking, on the other hand, is a difficult habit to quit.
You may even persuade yourself that thinking about something for an extended period of time is the key to producing the greatest answer, but this is rarely the case. In fact, the more you think about something, the less time and energy you may have to act on it.
Of course, everyone overthinks from time to time. Maybe you’re still worried about all the things that may go wrong when you make a presentation next week.
Perhaps you’ve spent numerous hours deciding what to wear to that job interview, and as a result, you haven’t spent any time preparing your responses. You even overthink interactions you have with your friends. Before you can stop overthinking, you must first realize when you are doing it. Here’s how to tell whether you’re overthinking something.
Here are a few overthinking symptoms
- Reminiscing about former events or scenarios
- You are second-guessing your judgments and replaying your blunders in your head.
- Rehashing difficult or painful talks
- Focusing on things over which you have no control, change, or improvement
- Consider the worst-case scenario or consequence.
- Taking your concerns away from the current moment and into the unchangeable past or unforeseen future
- “Running your list” while attempting to sleep
- Having doubts yet never making a choice or doing action
What effect does overthinking have on you?
While it may appear that overthinking is only something that occurs in your thoughts, it is much more than that. We have a detailed article on the effects of overthinking which might help you.
“Overthinking may alter how you feel and engage with the world around you,” continues Dr. Fowler, “preventing you from making crucial decisions, blocking you from enjoying the present moment, and emptying you of the energy you need to face everyday challenges.”
Furthermore, whether you’re dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, toxic thinking patterns may have a negative impact on both your mental and physical health.
“Studies suggest that brooding on stressful experiences can contribute to anxiety and sadness over time,” Dr. Fowler advises. “Anxiety can impair your capacity to cope with ordinary challenges, whereas depression causes sorrow, loneliness, and feelings of emptiness.”
Signs That You Are A Overthinker
Here are a few signs and overthinking symptoms:
- You Focus More On The Problem
- You Have Repetitive Thoughts
- Your anxiety keeps you up at night
- You Have Difficulties Making Decisions
1. You Focus More On The Problem
Overthinking is different from problem-solving. Overthinking is about dwelling on the problem, while problem-solving involves looking for a solution. You as an overthinking symptom tend to focus more on the problem rather than try and find out the solution. Problem-solving can lead to beneficial action. Overthinking, on the other hand, intensifies unpleasant feelings while failing to seek answers.
2. You Have Repetitive Thoughts
Ruminating—or repeating the same things again and over—isn’t productive. When you overthink, though, you may find yourself reliving a discussion in your brain or visualising something horrible happening several times.
According to a 2013 research published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, dwelling on your difficulties, faults, and deficiencies increases your chance of mental health problems.
3. Your anxiety keeps you up at night
First, you need to understand the difference between overthinking and anxiety. When you are overthinking, you may feel as though your brain would not shut down. When you attempt to sleep, your brain may go into overdrive, replaying scenes in your thoughts and causing you to envision horrible things happening.
Research validates what you probably already know: ruminating disrupts sleep. Overthinking makes it difficult to sleep. It’s necessary to learn how to stop overthinking at night.
4. You Have Difficulties Making Decisions
You could attempt to persuade yourself that thinking longer and harder is beneficial. After all, you’re approaching a subject from every conceivable aspect.
Overanalyzing and obsessing, on the other hand, become a barrier. According to research, overthinking makes it difficult to make decisions. You may be overthinking things if you’re unsure about anything from what to eat for dinner to which hotel to reserve. You’re probably wasting a lot of time seeking for second views and investigating your alternatives when, in the end, those minor details may not mean all that much.
How To Overcome Overthinking?
According to research, thinking less about an issue may be the path to finding better answers. According to research, an “incubation time” may help you make the optimal judgments.
Rather than sitting and thinking about an issue for an indefinite period of time, you may divert your attention for a short period of time.
While you’re busy with another duty, such as gardening, your brain may uncover better ways to figure out a solution in the background. Alternatively, you may “sleep on it” and discover that your brain solves the problem for you while you sleep.
A momentary diversion might provide you with a respite. It may also help you focus on something more constructive. When you stop thinking about the problem, your brain may even come up with a solution for you.
The Evolve app is now live globally on Android & Apple, click here to try for free! The app has incredible journeys that will help you combat the demon of overthinking and its symptoms.
Sarah Khan is pursuing CSE and is an author at Evolve.
Who strongly believes mental health is the overall strength.
Mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to connect with her.