Over-thinking an issue or event is a very common coping mechanism for dealing with stress. When there are unresolved issues or stressful situations with more than one possible solution, this is usually what leads to never-ending ruminating.
Unfortunately, over-thinking is usually linked to depression & anxiety. People that already suffer from a mental illness, are usually big over-thinkers. However, someone can also become mentally ill by starting to think destructively. All it takes is one single stressful life event to trigger unhelpful ruminating.
The best way to cope with your possible over-thinking, is to look at the way you think and to analyse the different thinking errors (otherwise known as cognitive distortions) you may be indulging in.
If you don’t know much about the different types of cognitive distortions, then click below:
Secondly, it is important to challenge any unhelpful thinking patterns by looking honestly at the evidence that supports those thoughts. Sometimes over-thinking can really spiral out of control and what may have started off as a minor problem, might have escalated into a catastrophe. Thinking isn’t always based on actual facts.
Thirdly, it is important to replace any unhelpful or overly dramatic thoughts with more grounded and sensible thoughts. If you are overly critical of yourself or others, then maybe try to tone it down a little. If you are worried that something bad is going to happen, then ask yourself ‘What are the chances of this really happening’? and ‘Is this really as bad as I think?Give yourself more constructive, positive thoughts and even write them down on paper if it helps!
Lastly, try and distract yourself when you are lost in endless over-thinking. Do something you enjoy, which will stop your mind from going into an uncomfortable state of hyperarousal.
Love Athina ♥
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