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10 simple steps to cope with overthinking



There are times you just need  a quiet time to yourself and the next thing that happens  is that you are  already deep into thought that you forget yourself. It is not abnormal for humans to go into worrying and overthinking because  things might not go as planned and  difficult times will always come. But dwelling on the same thing for a long time have effect on your mental health.

Continuous thinking have a way of affecting your mood, it makes you to get irritated, nervous and angry easily and these will not even give an iota of help to the situation on ground.

Do you find yourself thinking too much? These tips below will help you to overcome it.

1. Take a breath

Breath taking have been used in different cases like anger management this is because it is effective. The tone and tenor of your breath represents your mental health. Once you notice that your are already bothered and overthinking, spare out 5 minutes of your time to close your eyes and take a deep breath.

Follow these simple steps

  • Look a comfortable place to sit and relax your neck and shoulders.
  • Place one hand over your heart and the other across your belly.
  • Inhale and exhale through your nose, paying attention to how your chest and stomach move as you breathe.

2. Practice Meditation

Meditation is a mental exercise that involves relaxation, focus, and awareness. It is to the mind what physical exercise is to the body. Meditation have numerous advantages which includes decreased anxiety, decreased depression, increased pain tolerance, increased memory and learning capacity,increased self-awareness and better capacity to set goals.

Sitting to meditate for even 10 minutes will stop overthinking in its tracks. Meditation is like a mirror that lets you look deep down into who you are and how things are going. Know that you have  the power to make someone’s day better, it can help to keep negative thoughts from taking over. Take out time to meditate on ways that you can be helpful, it also gives you something productive to focus on instead of your never-ending stream of thoughts.

3. Find something that distracts you.

Instead of over thinking you can engage in activities that you enjoy that can serve as a form of distraction. Shut down overthinking by involving yourself in an activity you enjoy. You can learn new skills that you can enjoy like dancing, playing scrabble, learning how to ride bicycle.

It can be difficult to start something new when you are  overwhelmed by your thoughts. If finding a distraction feels awkward, try setting aside a little bit of your time. Use this time to either explore potential distractions or dabble in existing ones.

4. Recognize your successes

Silhouette of young person jumping over the mountains at sunset

When notice that you  overthinking,  just stop and take out your notebook or  note-taking app on your phone.  Write down five things that have gone right over the past weeks and the  role you played  in them.

These must not  be huge accomplishments, also include your blessings from God. When you look at it on paper or on-screen, you might be surprised at how these little things add up. If it feels helpful, refer back to this list when you find your thoughts increasing.

5) Get some exercise

Exercise, just like sleep,  pushes  the reboot button on your mind.  There is no way you can go out for an exercise and return back with the same state of mind. At times fatigue can even make you to feel tired and thoughts will race into your mind. Stand up today and go for a road walk.

6. Notice automatic negative thinking

Automated negative thoughts (ANTs) refer to knee-jerk negative thoughts, usually involving fear or anger, you sometimes have in reaction to a situation. You can identify and work through your ANTs by keeping a tract of your thoughts and actively working to change them:

Use a notebook to track the situation giving you anxiety, your mood, and the first thought that comes to you automatically. As you dig into details, evaluate why the situation is causing these negative thoughts.
Break down the emotions you’re experiencing and try to identify what you’re telling yourself about the situation.
Find an alternative to your original thought. For example, instead of jumping straight to, “This is going to be an epic failure,” try something along the lines of, “I’m genuinely trying my best.”

7. Carry out mindful eating.

Give yourself a treat to one of your favorite meals. Try to find the joy in each bite, and really focus on how the food tastes, smells, and feels in your mouth. Eating food that we like revitalizes our body and put smiles on our faces.
Get outside. Take a walk outside, even if it’s just a quick lap around the block. Take inventory of what you see along the way, noting any smells that waft by or sounds you hear.

8. Take a nap

Naps are usually underrated! It helps to increase alertness, boost creativity, reduce stress, improve perception, stamina, motor skills and accuracy, enhance your sex life, aid in weight loss, reduce the risk of heart attack, brighten your mood and boost memory. Just like exercise, a 20-minute nap works wonders. When your mind drifts into worrying, distract it and try to take a nap. Just give it a try!

9. Mindfully complete simple tasks

When I am in the middle of complex tasks and find myself overthinking things, I often shift to small and simple tasks that require less mental horsepower. For example, I will do the laundry, and dispose my refuse.

Doing a bunch of simple tasks can give  a feeling of success, I do feel excited when I complete my assignments.  It also teaches my brain to solve and finish problems. Returning  to more complex task (e.g. creating a clinical presentation or writing on this blog), I find that I am able to stay focused without any mental stress. My brain is primed and ready to finish the task whether it is  complex or not!

10. Embrace your fears

Some things will always be out of your control. Learning how to accept this can go a long way toward curbing overthinking. Definitely, this is easier said than done, and it will not  happen overnight.  Look for small opportunities where you can confront the situations you frequently worry about. Maybe it’s standing up to a bossy co-worker or taking that solo day trip you’ve been dreaming of.

If do not feel better after trying these simple steps , please speak out ! You do not  have to go it alone. Seeking outside help from a friend or  qualified therapist can help you develop new tools for working through your thoughts and even changing your mindset.

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