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How to Stop Overthinking

Updated on March 24, 2018
Nitika Mehra profile image

Nitika is a psychologist and has been working with an NGO, a school and two online counseling platforms.

"Overthinking leads to wastage of mental energy and time."

Simple techniques which will help you to stop over thinking

1. Practising Mindfulness

Its a simple technique in which we have to be mindful of the activity which we are currently doing. For example drinking a glass of water, reading a book and so on. Our concentration might drift from the activity to the worrisome thoughts, but we have to consistently try and get back to the present situation. You might be thinking how is this significant, but we really are absent-minded while doing simple activities because they don't need our concentration and attention to be completed. So being alert and aware of our daily activities might help removing our worrisome thoughts till an extent.

2. Maintaining a thought diary.

Whatever worries us , whatever thoughts they may be, just observe them and pen them down everyday. Do this for at least 1-2 weeks. at the end of the noting down period, go through the diary. Some of us would even laugh at ourselves that we were being worried for no reason. In this way we can keep a track on our dysfunctional thoughts and try to avoid them once we have identified them as being harmless and of no use.

3. Observing from distance.

This is yet another technique which helps to stop overthinking. Whatever thoughts are flooding your mind, just don't take stress because of them. Just let them come like floating clouds, observe them from a distance and just let them go without affecting your mood or state. Take this situation as externally observing your brain yourself! A sense of detachment is development so letting them go becomes easy.

4. Keep yourself as busy as possible, in a constructive way.

Over thinking also results when we are not doing anything worthwhile according to us, or we feel that our potential is going unfulfilled. So, apart from working for a living, go out and pursue your interests, learn new skills and tap your potential. This will keep you in high spirits, boost your self esteem and keep you away from over thinking as well.

5. Five by five rule.

Take the situation you are worrying about on a timeline of five years. Imagine that would the situation be the same after 5 years also. In maximum cases it's not. Hence, its logical that we should not spend more than 5 minutes worrying about it unless we are working on a solution for it!

6. Be solution oriented.

Whenever we face a problem, instead of blaming others for it and reacting in a defensive/attacking way. We should calm ourselves down and think for a practical solution so as to reduce over worrying or over thinking.

7. Exercise daily so as to promote the production of hormones in balance in the body. This results in a general happy mood and reduces mood swings.

Free yourself from worries and fears. You will start loving life1
Free yourself from worries and fears. You will start loving life1

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© 2017 Nitika Mehra


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    • AlanDoughtyXIII profile image


      13 months ago

      For more useful strategies, check out: It shall take you into the world of fixing overthinking things in far greater depth.

    • Dr Billy Kidd profile image

      Dr Billy Kidd 

      13 months ago from Sydney, Australia

      Good post.

      My favorite aphorism the coincides with this post comes from Charlie Synder: "Knowing too much about the job slows down the work."

      I always took this to mean over-thinking the issue instead of doing something about it.


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