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10 simple Habits to stop overthinking

There is always one thing that keeps holding people back from the life they want to live.

And that is the fact that this people tend to think too much.

They over think every little problem until it becomes bigger and scarier than it actually is. They over think positive things until they don’t look so positive anymore.

Or overanalyze and deconstruct things and so the happiness that comes from just enjoying something in the moment disappears.

Although thinking things through can truly beneficial of course.

Thinking too much about things in life can be destructive because it makes you to be standstill in life in becoming.

There was a time I used to over think things so much that at a point it became very detrimental to my person. I had to stop!

I want to share with you my readers on 10 simple habits that helped me in a  big way to become a simpler and smarter thinker and to live a happier and less fearful life.

1.Expand your horizon of perspectives

It is always very easy to spend so much time thinking about small issues in life.

When you want to think about something, you need to stop and ask yourself:

Will this issue still be in existences in months or even in weeks say 2 or 3 weeks to come?

I have really come to understand that widening my perspective on every matter have helped me a lot on avoiding over thinking the issue at hand  and to focusing  my time and energy on something that are of utmost  priority.

2.Take decisions faster

If you do not learn to set a shorter time for taking your decision ,then you will have to keep turning around on decisions trying to view them from all angles hence over thinking the whole issue.

You really have  to become better at making decisions and to swipe into action by setting deadlines in your daily life. No matter if it’s a small or bigger decision.

Here’s what has worked for me:

  • For small decisions :like if should go and do the dishes, respond to an email or work out I usually give myself 30 seconds or less to make a decision.
  • For somewhat larger decisions :that would have taken me days or weeks to think through in the past I use a deadline for 30 minutes or for the end of the workday.

3.Take Actions

When you know how to get started with taking action consistently each day then you’ll procrastinate less by over thinking.

Setting deadlines and a good tone for the day are two things that have helped me to become much more of person of action.

Taking small steps forward and only focusing on getting one small step done at a time is another habit that have worked really well.

It works so well because you do not feel overwhelmed and so you do not want flee into procrastination. And even though you may be afraid, taking just a step is such a small thing that you do not get paralyzed in fear.

4.Understand that you cannot control everything.

Trying to think things through 50 times can be a way to try to control everything. To cover every eventuality so you don’t risk making a mistake, fail or looking like a fool.

But those things are a part of living a life where you truly stretch your comfort zone. Everyone who you may admire and have lived a life that inspires you has failed. They have made mistakes.

But in most cases they’ve also seen these things as valuable feedback to learn from. Those things that may look negative have taught them a lot and have been invaluable to help them to grow.

So stop trying to control everything. Trying to do so simply doesn’t work because no one can see all possible scenarios in advance.

This is of course easier said than done. So do it in small steps if you like.

5.Say stop in a situation where you know you cannot think straight.

Sometimes when I’m hungry or when I’m lying in bed and are about to go to sleep negative thoughts start buzzing around in my mind.

In the past they could do quite a bit of damage. Nowadays I’ve become good at catching them quickly and to say to myself:

No, no, we are not going to think about this now.

I know that when I’m hungry or sleepy then my mind sometimes tend to be vulnerable to not thinking clearly and to negativity.

So I follow up my “no, no…” phrase and I say to myself that I will think this situation or issue through when I know that my mind will work much better.

For example, after I’ve eaten something or in the morning after I have gotten my hours of sleep.

It took a bit of practice to get this to work but I’ve gotten pretty good at postponing thinking in this way. And I know from experience that when I revisit a situation with some level-headed thinking then in 80% of the cases the issue is very small to nonexistent.

And if there is a real issue then my mind is prepared to deal with it in much better and more constructive way.

6.Don’t get lost in vague fears.

Another trap I’ve fallen into many times that have spurred on over thinking is that I’ve gotten lost in vague fears about a situation in my life. And so my mind running wild has created disaster scenarios about what could happen if I do something.

So I’ve learned to ask myself: honestly, what is the worst that could happen?

And when I’ve figured out what the worst that could happen actually is then I can also spend a little time to think about what I can do if that often pretty unlikely thing happens.

I’ve found that the worst that could realistically happen is usually something that is not as scary as what my mind running wild with vague fear could produce.

Finding clarity in this way usually only takes a few minutes and bit of energy and it can save you a lot of time and suffering.

7.Exercise

Exercising will rally help you let go inner tensions and worries.

It most often makes me feel more decisive and when I was more of an over thinker then it was often my go-to method of changing the headspace I was in to a more constructive one.

8.Have good rest

This is one of the most insignificant factors yet very important towards keeping a positive mindset and not gets lost in negative thought habits.

Reason being that when you fail to get enough quality sleep you become susceptible .

 

Susceptible to worrying and pessimism.

Susceptible thinking as clearly as you usually do. And to getting lost in thoughts going around and around in your mind as you over think.

So let me share a couple of my favorite tips that help me to sleep better:

Keep your bedroom cool.It can feel nice at first to get into a warm bedroom.

But I’ve found that I sleep better and more calmly with fewer scary or negative dreams if I keep the bedroom cool.

Use ear plugs.If you, like me, are easily awoken by noises then a pair simple earplugs can be a life-saver. These inexpensive items have helped me to get a good night’s sleep and sleep through snorers, noisy cats and other disturbances more times than I can remember.

Don’t try to force yourself to go to sleep.If you don’t feel sleepy then don’t get into bed and try to force yourself to go to sleep. That, at least in my experience, only leads to tossing and turning in my bed for an hour or more. A better solution in these situations is to wind down for an extra 20-30 minutes on the couch with, for example, some reading. This helps me to go to sleep faster and, in the end, get more sleep

9.Spend more of your time in the present moment.

 

Spend more time in the present rather than concentrating the whole of your time in the past or possible future by so doing you will have limited time to over think issues.

It is beneficial to dwell in the present than dwelling in the past.

Three ways that I often use to reconnect with the present moment are:

Take it easy.Slow down how you do whatever you are doing right now. Move slower, talk slower or ride your bicycle more slowly for example.

By doing so you become more aware of how you use your body and what is happening all around you right now.

Tell yourself: Now I am…I often tell myself this: Now I am X.

And X could be brushing my teeth.

Taking a walk in the woods. Or doing the dishes.

This simple reminder helps my mind to stop wandering and brings my focus back to what is happening in this moment.

Disrupt and reconnect.If you feel you are getting lost in over thinking then disrupt that thought by – in your mind – shouting this to yourself: STOP!

Then reconnect with the present moment by taking just 1-2 minutes to focus fully on what is going on around you. Take it all in with all your senses. Feel it, hear it, smell it, see it and sense it on your skin.

 

  1. Associate with people who do not over think

 

It is said that beds of the same feather flocks together, if you associate with people who are mediocre will definitely be like them.

 

People that are negative, pessimistic and most importantly people that over thinks issues stay away from such people, instead spend most of your time with positive people.

 

Those that do not over think things.

Your social environment plays a big part. And not just the people and groups close to you in real life. But also what you read, listen to and watch. The blogs, books, forums, movies, podcasts and music in your life.

So think about if there are any sources in your life – close by or further away – that encourages and tends create more over thinking in your mind. And think about what people or sources that has the opposite effect on you.

Find ways to spend more of your time and attention with the people and input that have a positive effect on your thinking and less on the influences that tends to strengthen you’re over thinking habit.

When you stop over thinking  things you find yourself taking decisions faster  and wiser too.

Theresa Mbanefo

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