To think is a natural ability of the human brain; the greatest gift to humanity from nature. This ability is meant to analyze the situations and respond appropriately to move forward in life. It is your thought that creates your reality, so you have to use it wisely. However, if the ability to think gets misused by overthinking, it becomes detrimental to your professional performance as well as personal well-being.
Overthinking basically means to think too much and it applies either when you think more and act less or exaggerate the problems by thinking worst all the time. Overthinking is a common problem and almost everyone at some point of time felt doing it more or less. Although it is not wise to act without thinking, but overthinking interfere with a needed action by making you unable to take decisions.
You cannot stop overthinking altogether; after all you have to think to respond to the situations with a best possible alternative. Overthinking in itself is not a problem; in fact, it is a good exercise for brain, but when overthinking halts your progress in life and start ruining your relationship, you need to address it. Here are few ways that may help you to overcome the habit of overthinking:
1) DISTRACT YOURSELF
When you get bombarded by the thought of “what if” and “why” questions about certain situations in the past or about the future and that make you feel stuck, you need to force yourself and distract your attention in some other activity. Do whatever you can make yourself feel happy and do not let negative thoughts get to you so that it does not dictate terms in your life.
2) ACCEPT THE REALIETY OF LIFE
Life is not always fair and there are many things happening in this world with most of the people that can never be categorized right and justified. But that does not mean that you keep on worrying about the injustice of life and what are the problems you are facing in life. By doing that you would exaggerate the problem and make it tough to handle. If you just sit and keep on worrying about the injustice of life, you would go mad. Accept the fact that life cannot always be fair, but it never throws the problems in front of a person that they cannot handle.
3) KEEP YOURSELF OCCUPIED
Keeping yourself occupied in meaningful activities is the best way to overcome thinking a lot. Keep yourself engaged in an activity like reading, watching TV, listening to music, washing, cleaning, playing games, shopping, exercise, and of the same that allow you to concentrate on something else to the point where you do not let your mind think anything over and over again. Any activity that brings you pleasure, does not let the thought run wild in your mind and that in turn help you to overcome overthinking.
4) COMMUNICATE WITH SOMEONE
If something is making you worried all the time and you keep it bundled up inside you, then it would make the situation worst. That is why, you should find someone, who are supportive to you and tell them what keeps on bothering you. Communicating with someone closed to you and telling them about what keeps on making you worried; make you feel better about yourself.
5) STOP WORRYING ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE OPINION
By the virtue of free thinking, people have the privilege to form an opinion about you - good or bad. There would always be someone who thinks you are good and some other will think you are not. By no means, you can control the opinion of people about yourself. So stop worrying about other people opinion about yourself and try to make them like you; it would never work. What you can do is that start seeing yourself in the best way, other people will follow.
6) SET DEADLINES FOR DECISIONS
Setting deadlines to make a decision is a good way to stop overthinking. Have faith in your ability to make quick decisions. If you do not have time-limit to make a decision, you keep on thinking about it from all angles and in the end make yourself confused. The trick is that makes decisions with a definite reward and once it comes in your mind, stick to that. Do not question your decision once taken. If it is right, you will get rewarded and if not you do not have regrets because you have taken in your effort to form a habit of taking quick decision and over the period of time it would make you perfect.
7) PRACTICE AWARENESS
Practicing awareness is the one of the best ways to overcome overthinking. Awareness is a skill that can be developed by practicing again and again over the period of time. To practice awareness, you should stop what you are thinking and dedicate your focus on the present moment. Although at the initial stage, you would find it very difficult to concentrate on the present moment and you might be able to do this only for a while. But you should not get frustrated when a thought gets popped up in your mind. Keep on practicing awareness, over the period of time you would be able to maintain awareness for a longer period of time and that in turn help you overcome overthinking.
To conclude, although it is hard to realize when you started to form a habit of overthinking, but the moment you come to know, you should address it without wasting any further time. Overthinking if not taken care of may lead to other serious problems and you would be addicted to overthink everything again and again no matter how much trivial it is.
So whenever you recognize, make sure to address it and move on to overcome it so that you can make progress in your professional life and enable yourself to form meaningful relations with others. Do not waste your time by thinking about trivial things which does not go to do any good for you. Think only about things that really matters in your life. Be positivity even if thing does not go as per your wishes to boost your level of self-confidence, because you never know something better is in store for you in near future.