Think

“The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts”.

Marcus Aurelius

Does thinking leads to thoughts or thoughts trigger our thinking? However, we do think! Thinking is essential for us to sustain ourselves. But it is enough to think based on our needs rather than becoming a victim of our own thinking.

Our mind has different parts and one of that is the Intellect, the faculty of reasoning and understanding objectively. It is very important for survival.

Now, we live in the time of technological advancements and we do not have to struggle on many issues that previous generations were facing for their survival (food, shelter, and security). Looks like when our basic needs are taken care, our intellect starts to look for more challenges. As a result, some of us get into the habit of thinking and analyzing the things we come across and gradually we may get into overthinking and unnecessary analysis. In turn, it may end up as frustration on anything or everything for not being good enough or perfect as per our expectations.

Intellect is like a double-edged sword. While it dissects and analyzes the things it comes across, continuous usage of it may start hurting us. Once we get into the habit of over-analyzing and thinking, it can be like a whirlpool. For every small thing, we tend to dig-down & dissect and when we could not get out of those thoughts, it leads to irritation. Though these things look small, over the period of time they can become a burden on us.

Another observation, it is easy to over-think on negative things than positive or good things. Hence, the thoughts that are slightly towards the negative side move faster and faster and could create havoc in our mind. Thus, even minor problems get zoomed into bigger ones and start bothering us. Most of the time, these minor issues may not matter to us in reality. Still, they may cause anxiety, just because of overthinking. Sometimes it makes us feel like a scapegoat of the surroundings, though it’s only an illusion.

To escape from whirling thoughts, people may even go for drugs and drinks which can temporarily pacify them. But it is more like trying to reduce your brain’s capacity. It’s up to the individual to decide whether they want to pursue peace and happiness by such means.

It would be great for mankind if we could do overthinking on the positive aspects and be happier and merrier. It is an ideal situation and may not be that easy to do, especially when one has got stuck in the loop of pointless overthinking.

Meditation is a way that helps us to watch and moderate our thinking. It gives us the mental stamina to withstand and guide our thoughts on required areas. With regular practice, it becomes easier to reduce overthinking and be calm internally.

Another alternative is to leverage this habit to create something. Channelizing the energy behind this overthinking on creative interests can help both individual and their surroundings.  Taking up a hobby or a sports or a job of our passion can really help us to use our energy to create something better and it can be satisfying also.

What is your way to reduce overthinking? Are you continuing the same or looking for an alternative for the New Year?

–Anitha KC

First published @ Pointlessoverthinking.com

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