How do I know if I'm thinking

4 ways to prevent unnecessary overthinking

By Lena Heitmann

Published 19 June 2020

Are you someone who just thinks too much about everything? If so, I'm sure it didn't take you long to answer that question. If you think too much or constantly dissect and question every thought in your head, every move that you have made or will make in the future, you can freeze. That's how you are at some point will no longer be able to do anything in life.

All this thinking ensures that you cling to a certain psychological state, that you rework something in your brain that has already happened, something that you cannot change at all, or that you are worried about a future decision gets stuck. But hope is not lost!

There are a few simple things you can do right nowto relax and stop thinking about everything. Read on for details!

Thinking a lot isn't always bad

Why do I think so much about everything? If you are wondering why you think too much all the time, I want to tell you right now that thinking too much is not always bad in and of itself. In fact, coming to terms with past actions and decisions can be a powerful tool when it comes to to learn from our mistakes and to grow from them. It can be a form of self-reflection that can help you see a past situation from a new perspective.

That much thought can also help solve problems and even support the decision-making process. The problem arises, however, when thinking about a situation leads to lingering in it, or even develops into a kind of obsession.

However, over-thinking becomes a problem when it doesn't add value to your life. If thinking too much is not helping you in any way, it is time to give it up.

What is causing so much thought?

Over thinking is one very common problem, especially in young to middle-aged adults - women are also particularly affected. Over-thinking can be rooted in self-doubt or a lack of healthy self-esteem. Perhaps it is also associated with stress and anxiety, or it can even be the result of a past trauma or negative past life experience.

Sometimes it can Identifying the cause will help put an end to the behavior, and for this purpose it is worth investing some time in internal work to find the source of too much reflection. Regardless of the cause, however, over-thinking diminishes the enjoyment of everyday life, can affect the sleep cycle and quality of sleep, and, if not controlled, can even lead to depression. Here's how you can finally relax and stop thinking about everything.

How to break the vicious circle

Excessive thinking can be an annoying and downright problematic habit that, as you progress, grows too big Stress, anxiety and even leads to problems with mental illness. And while rethinking things isn't a habit that you can turn off all at once, the good news is that there are definitely steps you can take to stop being a big thinker. You can even start today.

Try out a few suggestions from this list and find out what suits you, your personality and your situation best.

  • Know when you are thinking too much

That might sound too easy. Especially when it feels like you're always thinking too much, but first listen to me. Taking the time to acknowledge that you are doing something, whether it is thinking too much, eating, or sleeping too much, is the first step in making real change.

You have to be well aware of when you are falling into the habit of thinking too much. Observe the situation around you that put you in this state of mind and write it down. Don't get angry with yourself, just admit when you think too much and let the thought go. Knowing what is causing this much thought will help you take steps to get rid of it.

Mindfulness is the ability to perceive the power of full presence. It is in control of your own experiences. Mindfulness is like a superpower that allows you to be fully aware of your current situation, focus your attention, and move away from your experiences in order to fully understand your feelings, thoughts, and emotions. Sounds pretty powerful, doesn't it?

Integrating mindfulness is easy. There are so many opportunities every day to step back and focus on the present moment. Just take the effort to try it out.

Don't just see it as just another thing on your to-do list, see it as a way to understand your own feelings and emotions in a non-judgmental way, to process information, and to be more present in your own life.

  • Try relaxation techniques

Deep breathing in and of itself is a powerful relaxation technique. You can begin with some deep abdominal breaths immediately after your mindfulness training. Abdominal breathing, also called diaphragmatic breathing, uses the diaphragm to completely fill the lungs with oxygen. Inhale through your nose to inflate your stomach and exhale through your mouth while tightening your abdominal muscles.

It's a powerful exercise that will help you relax, relieve stress, and get out of your own mind. Take some time to sit or meditate with your thoughts while actively trying to calm your thoughts - both techniques can help you be more in the moment and reduce stress.

If sitting still isn't quite enough for you, think about purposeful movement to reduce the amount of thinking. For example, start with yoga. You can do it alone at home or at a local studio and get the added benefit of having some time to yourself too. But yoga isn't the only thing you can do - you can also do tai chi or relaxing stretching, or just go for a walk - it's the movement that matters.

Stress management and relaxation techniques can be powerful tools in dealing with chronic over-thinking. Including these practices on a daily basis can help you balance your mind and body. Try to do something that relaxes you every day to effectively combat the stress and anxiety that causes over-thinking.

  • Unload your thoughts

There is something very cleansing about putting a pen on paper and letting go of your worries. Maybe you're not a person who likes to use pen and paper, but you prefer to type them in - whatever works best for you!

Writing down your worries and feelings not only helps you let go of those negative thoughts, but it literally does too Free up valuable space in your brain for more productive things. This is a good option to try right before bed if you tend to sleep poorly from brooding all night. Just write down whatever moves you - your to-do list, your shopping list, the child's pick-up schedule, everything!

Finally, make sure you keep doing these things! Long-term solutions to relax and stop thinking about everything require persistence and patience.