Overthinking is one of the common issues my clients come up with during their life and career coaching sessions, things as “I can’t stop thinking of what happened in last week meeting”or “that conflict controls my mind, it’s like my brain won’t switch-off”.
The more you face challenges, responsibilities, goals, the more your mind got stretched with all types of positive and negative thoughts. Overthinking becomes a habit by time and it is a destructive habit, it leads you to stress and anxiety.
What is overthinking?
When you think of something too much and for too long, this is the definition of destructive overthinking and it sounds familiar to you, isn’t it?!
Why overthinking is a habit and a destructive one?
When you practice something for long (ideally 21 consecutive days), you got attached to and won’t be easy to let go. This is what habit is.
Overthinking leads to anxiety and stress, reduce your energy, feeling of being overwhelmed, and limits your options for a way forward and solution. Overthinking turns to be a bad habit that holds you from unleashing your potential. that’s what makes it a destructive habit.
My clients frequently ask “how can I stop overthinking?” my answer to them is; “what is the cause of your overthinking?”
What is the cause of overthinking?
Overthinking comes from two forms; stuck in the past or worry about the future. WAIT it sound OK but it is not.
Overthinking is different than problem solving, the last involved in finding a solution, and the first involved in dwelling on the issue.
Overthinking is different than self reflection where you introspect self to learn about yourself, gaining clarity, and a new perspective. It is healthier
How to stop overthinking?
To change any destructive habit such as overthink, the first thing you need to know is to reach an internal decision that overthinks does more harm to you than what you think! here is 5 steps to stop overthinking:
1-Hunt the moment of overthinking
Overthinking is a destructive habit that you don’t recognize it when you are doing it. it became part of your DNA. The first step is to hunt this moment when you start to replay an event or an issue over and over again. Notice your thinking pattern in this moment and its reflection on your emotional state.
2-Eliminate the thinking of what may go wrong
Overthinking is a destructive habit that is driven by fear or self-blaming. when you focus on negativity and what may go wrong dwelling your problems won’t help you and freeze your brain. start to change the pattern by focusing on the level of control you got on the issue, options you have, obstacles that in your way. If you have no control over the issue, set a coping strategy for acceptance.
3-Put things in the actual size
Overthinking tends to make things more bigger, negative, and scary than it is. Things like “what I will do in my next performance meeting, my boss won’t make it easy on me”, “ how would I find a job in such a tough market situation?”, “ Everyone is losing his job, what will happen to me?”, “How would I sort out my family issues?”, “how I will secure my kids’ education?”.
You simply make the potential failure as an irrefutable failure. Instead, remind yourself you been there before, you been to different challenges in life and you have found the solution, remind yourself that how this issue will matter after five years.
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4-Eliminate the tendency of perfection
Did I get your attention? We aim for the perfect life for our family, perfect partner, perfect presentation for our clients. Perfections sound beautiful and what we aim for, but the truth is; it is not realistic, impractical, and in most cases not even needed! set a realistic goals and options for your issues that your can reach or achieve instead of being locked up in perfection. this is will stop your destructive overthinking habits.
Stop seeking perfection, start seeking progress
5-Do your best, stop predicting the future
I AM NOT GOOD ENOUGH! The biggest self limit belief that stops you from progressing and increase the destructive habit of overthinking. And when you worry about securing the future, you are wasting your energy in something you won’t ever secure.
Remind yourself that what you need instead is to do your best, define your skills, strength, and resources you need in any particular issue. Self reflection is a must in this stage to introspect yourself to gain a self awareness over your emotions, values, and beliefs
Start today with those steps to stop that destructive habit of overthinking that limits your from archives the success in life and work that you wish for.
If you are based on Dubai or any other emirates in UAE, feel free to contact or Email me firstname.lastname@example.org for a one-to-one 30 min free coaching session. If your life out of UAE, not a problem we shall do the same over video calling option.