Some of us spend too much time worrying about everything. We think about work when we’re on holiday, we stress about not being able to live our dreams, and we go over the list of things we need to do even when we’re driving.
Overthinking leads to anxiety and carrying our problems everywhere we go will leave us mentally exhausted. If we keep letting ourselves be imprisoned by our own thoughts, we will miss out on a lot of things life has to offer. Instead of spending most of our energy on unnecessary things, we should try to relax more and learn to breathe.
Here are 8 ways you can stop overthinking.
Get rid of the ‘should haves’ and ‘could haves’
You should have jumped to another company years ago. You could have taken a gap year after college. Your life would have been different if you didn’t listen to your family members. You would have gotten that promotion if you had put in more effort. Whatever you think you should-have or could-have done, let them go because there’s nothing you can do to change the past.
Instead of dwelling on problems, look for solutions
You have too much on your plate. You’re struggling to make ends meet. You hate your job. Your partner doesn’t make you a priority. If you keep thinking about your problems, you will not leave much time for anything else. Try think about what you can do to change things instead. It will help motivate you and give you a sense of purpose.
Don’t focus on things that can go wrong
Stop worrying about everything that could go wrong before you even start. Focus on what could go right instead and try to be more open. If you have always wanted to travel to Europe alone, go. If you want to start your own business, do it. Don’t let fear, people, or some bad reviews stop you from going after your dreams.
Stop making a mountain out of a molehill
Things may not be as bad or difficult as you make it seem. Stop picturing the worst scenarios or exaggerating. Remind yourself that it’s all a part of life and it’s not the end of the world. Learn to take things one step at a time and think positive. Relax and ask yourself if it would still matter 5 years down the road.
Don’t worry about the future too much
No one can predict the future so you might as well try to live in the moment. Embrace the unknown and appreciate what’s right in front of you. Focus on what you can do right now instead of worrying about what will happen next week, next month, or next year. Don’t let the uncertainty of your future take away your ability to stay in the present.
Let go of the need for perfection
Things do not always need to be perfect or exactly how you want it to be. Sometimes you have to learn to adapt. When you let go of control, your mind will be more at peace. If you can’t complete a task within an unrealistic period, then don’t force yourself. If you’re too tired to host a dinner party, then reschedule. You are human and there’s only so much you can do.
Make peace with your best
Stop putting yourself down for not being what you think you should be or what others expect you to be. Give yourself some reassurance and accept that you are doing the best you can. Remind yourself that you have come a long way and it’s okay to do things at your own pace. You don’t have to be successful or like everyone else right now and your time will come.
Look for healthy distractions
When you start overthinking, distract yourself with hobbies that are good for you. Don’t opt for social media, gaming, or movies. Instead, go for a swim, take a walk, or do yoga. Try to clear your mind and replace the negative thoughts with positivity. You will feel more energized and calm when you distract yourself with healthy choices.
Danila was a magazine writer focused on lifestyle topics and a communications specialist in the telecommunications industry where her work was published or broadcast via several offline and online media channels before shifting to freelance writing. Besides writing, she enjoys travel, taking photos, and reading.