Overthinking is defined as, 'thinking about something too much or for too long.' While it’s human nature to think things through when making a decision, it becomes overthinking when you can’t get out of your own head. It happens to all of us at some point in our lives–we all experience events thatcause us worry or stress.
Here are some key tips to help you worry less.
Identify your destructive thought patterns
Negative and destructive thought patterns come in many forms–and some are worse than others. These thought patterns tend to surface during times of stress and conflict and contribute to the negative effects of overthinking. Two of the most common patterns are ruminating and incessant worrying.
Ruminating means there is a single thought or several connected thoughts that are sad or dark, and that run through your mind over and over again. Rumination is common inperfectionists, and can contribute to depression and pushing others away. With incessant worrying, you constantly anticipate and worry about almost anything in your life going wrong. Incessant worrying doesn’t seem to be related to a specific event in your life, but it is deeply related to your limiting beliefs and your story.
Change your story
Overthinkers may tell themselves, 'I’ve always been a worrier' or 'I’m just naturally more anxious than everyone else.' These are stories that hold you back and can be especially hard to change if you’ve never asked yourself 'Why do I overthink?'
Toovercome your limiting beliefs, you need to first identify them. Then you can catch yourself when you start telling yourself these negative stories and replace them with positive ones, like 'I am in charge of my emotions.' Once you change your story, you’ll change your life.
Live in the moment
According to author, Tony Robbins, living in the moment is key to learning how to stop overthinking. You can take control of your mind and stop negative emotions in their tracks. Identify overthinking before it spirals out of control and take a minute to reset. Breathe and focus on the moment–what are you hearing and seeing? What are you grateful for? At first, it will take conscious awareness. Daily rituals like meditation and priming can help you retrain your brain to live in the moment. Soon you’ll find it comes naturally.