PRESS PLAY > MAUREN MORRIS - GIRL
Finding yourself in a pattern of obsessive thoughts, non-stop thoughts, spiraling thoughts.
Why don't I feel loved?
Why doesn't anyone understand me?
What should I blog about next?
Do people understand everything going on in the world right now?
Why don't I feel happy?
Am I masking my feelings?
Am I just a mess?
These are emotions and feelings. Typically when I can't sleep, I get into a zone in my head of the most bizarre questions, and some are so emotional that I can't even speak about them at this time.
I then get into my psychological mode.
What is wrong with me?
Have I broken again?
Am I in another manic episode?
Do I need time away?
What is it?
Do you remember that box that you could shake, and it would reply, "someone, please get me out of here?"
That is precisely what I feel like.
If I were in a therapy session, my psychologist would say, "Emm, scan your body from head to toe and tell me where you feel this in your body" or "Emm, close your eyes and tell me where you feel the worry most."
Is that what it is, worry?
So let's go ahead and give this a try, beginning at my head, it feels heavy. As I get to my heart, it also feels heavy. Go a little further to my stomach, and it feels empty. As I move into my legs, they want to run, my feet are restless.
At this moment, I, for once, do not feel physical pain; it is entirely emotional pain.
Getting Into The Psychology Of Over-Thinking
When we overthink, we are merely trying to prepare ourselves for a situation, according to The Institute for Advancement and Education.
In an article published in Scientific American Mind entitled "Why We Worry," science writer Victoria Stern did a deep dive into the causes behind chronic overthinking. In summary: it's all about control.
"Chronic worriers operate under the misperception that their overthinking and attempts at controlling every situation allow them to problem-solve and plan for the future," said Stern. "Instead, their thought pattern hinders cognitive processing and also causes overstimulation of emotion- and fear-processing areas in the brain."
Overthinking and worrying trick our brains into believing that we are preparing for any situation to handle any outcome, positive or negative. In reality, while this may work in the short-term, it ultimately harms us.
Dr. Michael Stein, a psychologist, based in Denver, attributes worry and overthinking to a fear of being uncertain about the future." When we experience this fear, our brain jumps into "analysis mode." It starts beginning to prepare and think over every outcome. This thinking ignites our minds and creates a temporary comfort to deal with uncertainty." https://educationaladvancement.org/blog-overthinking-mind-wont-turn-off/
Problems With Overthinking
Overthinking has so many adverse effects on our mental and physical health. It also drives us to madness.
A study from the Journal of Abnormal Psychology noted that overthinking can cause us to dwell on our mistakes and shortcomings, increasing the risk of mental health problems. This can often cause the "over thinker" to fall into a vicious cycle of ruminating more and more while their mental health is declining.
Leading to emotional distress at no surprise. Resorting to unhealthy coping strategies, like alcohol, food, or addictive substances, over thinkers tend to believe they can self-treat. Often leading to irritability, anger, and other negative emotions. Overthinking causes health issues; I know this first hand. Poor sleep habits. Since the mind does not turn off. Your heart rate and blood pressure can also increase, leading to increased anxiety issues.
How Do We Stop This Pattern?
Who knows exactly. You have to find the solution by trial and error.
Chronic thinkers have a tendency to get stuck in the "analysis" phase of a situation. Even if you begin with a small step, try to solve the problem. An excellent example of this is if you are overthinking applying for a new job, start drafting your resume or completing practice applications. Actions can help your thoughts.
- Being Mindful
Oh boy, this takes so much practice, the benefits are worth it. I personally am not a meditator; however, if you can do this, I have heard so many testimonies of how beneficial it is, especially along with yoga.
- Busy Busy Busy
Redirect your attention. Yes, get your mind off of those thoughts. Hobbies, reading, writing, hanging out with friends. Action is the key.
- No More Negative Thoughts
Get a grip on what you're calling these thoughts. Let's not call them cynical, let's call them "non-productive".
Additional Things I find Helpful
- Going for a drive
- Looking at nature
- Writing my blogs
- Spending some time with happy people
- Looking at pictures of great memories
- Listening to music (preferably delighted and upbeat or worship)
- Watching church services on line
- Watching positive YouTube videos
- Watching funny YouTube videos
- Positive affirmations
- Join a lively online group
It is complicated to get a grip on your thoughts when you feel as though you are heading down that "rabbit hole". You feel lost, misunderstood, you don't want to burden others, people can be hurtful with their opinions also.
I am working on a plan. I do believe that I need a hobby. I know that my health affects my overthinking, I know that I need more time in nature, I know that I need to focus on myself.
Every little step is a step in the right direction. I will add this, it is tough to feel loved when you are an over-thinker because you think all of these ways. You often feel abandoned, depressed, and lonely. That is at least my take on it. Of course, my issues run deep.
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