The difference between an average person and an over-thinker is the intensity with which the latter let their thoughts take over their minds. An average person can be worried in challenging situations. In contrast, an over-thinker will design all the negative scenarios in their mind—even the ones which are less likely to happen. Their biggest drawback is anxiety; they just can’t ‘snap out of their thoughts. Sometimes it crosses a limit and even leads to physical pain like extreme headache, nausea and even insomnia. To sum it up, a life of an over-thinker isn’t easy. Imagine a computer with 50 tabs open and now multiply that ten times. Yes, that’s not even an exaggeration.
That is partly what it feels like, but now that we roughly know what it is, let’s discuss how we can keep situations under control, even if we can’t completely eliminate them. Below mentioned are 5 strategies by which you can keep those wild thoughts at bay.
1- Practice present-moment awareness using mindfulness
Professor Norman Farb at the University of Toronto concluded in a study that the human mind is divided into two different sets for networking. The first network is called “the default network.” This involves thinking when you don’t have any particular thought occupying your mind, more like daydreaming ad analyzing the world. It is your perspective of the world that is formed through these thoughts.
The second network is called the “direct experience network.” This happens when you are gaining experience firsthand. It is not our mind creating thoughts; it is what you are experiencing and instantly forming subconscious ideologies. For example, when you suddenly touch a flame, the instant heat is a firsthand experience of its hotness, and you automatically react.
You deliberately activate your direct experience network whenever you overthink, whereas your default network is kept on hold. To manage this, try meditating. This shall not only calm your mind but also help you understand better. Once you practice meditation, you are likely you make more rational decisions.
2- A Zen Master explains how to practice acceptance
The first step towards change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. Once you try to calm your mind, you’ll realize that it gives rise to more thoughts, like a never-ending rat race. The best way of managing these thoughts is to accept things as and how they are. Things become easy when you learn to accept the truth.
3- Understand that everything comes and goes
Change is the only constant in life. Until and unless you don’t let go of the old things, new things won’t arrive. According to sazuki, ‘Everything about consciousness comes and goes. So allow yourself to feel something new. Life is all about experiences.
4) Learn to become an observer of the mind
Thinking is one thing. Analyzing your thought process is another. Love yourself enough to explore your mind. You might think a lot about things, but if your thought process and approach need to be corrected, then all of it is a waste.
Reference – Hackspirit
Check Out – 8 Things You Don’t Know You’re Doing Because You’re An Over-Thinker