If it’s something you have some control over, consider how you can prevent the problem, or challenge yourself to identify five potential solutions.
If it’s something you have no control over, think about the strategies you can use to cope with it. Focus on the things you can control, like your attitude and effort.
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Thinking about how you could do things differently or recognizing potential pitfalls to your plan could help you perform better in the future.
Incorporate 20 minutes of “thinking time” into your daily schedule. When your time is up, move on to something else.
When you start overthinking things outside of your scheduled time, simply remind yourself that you’ll need to wait until your “thinking time” to address those issues in your mind.
Mindfulness will help you become more aware of the here and now.
Mindfulness takes practice, but over time, it can decrease overthinking. There are classes, books, apps, courses, and videos available to help you learn mindfulness skills.
Start paying attention to the way you think so you can become aware of the problem.
When you’re replaying events in your mind over and over, or worrying about things you can’t control, acknowledge that this isn’t productive. Thinking is only helpful when it leads to positive action.
It’s easy to get carried away with negative thoughts.
Remember that your emotions will interfere with your ability to look at situations objectively. Take a step back and look at the evidence.
Telling yourself to stop thinking about something will backfire.
Change the channel in your brain by changing your activity. Exercise, engage in conversation on a completely different subject, or work on a project that distracts you. Doing something different will put an end to the barrage of negative thoughts.
Overthinking often involves two destructive thought patterns—ruminating and incessant worrying.
Ruminating involves dwelling on the past.
Persistent worrying involves negative—often catastrophic—predictions about the future.
Like all habits, changing your destructive thought patterns can be a challenge. But, with consistent practice, you can train your brain to think differently. Here are six ways to stop overthinking everything:
Chronic overthinkers rehash conversations they had yesterday, second-guess every decision they make and imagine disastrous outcomes all day every day.
Thinking too much prevents them from getting anything done. And it wreaks havoc on their mood.
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