If you deal with overthinking, here are some strategies I have used over the years to avoid those rabbit holes our brains like to create.
When you notice you mind wandering down a dark path of crowded negative thoughts try these:
Combat Breathing – 4x4x4
- Breathe in through your nose for 4 seconds
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds
- Breathe out of your mouth for 4 seconds.
- This will slow down your heart rate, balance out your cortisol levels, and temporally suppress the thoughts you were having; leaving room for clarity.
- To simplify, take one big deep breath being conscious of your inhale, hold, and exhale.
- Assess where you are. Examples:
- I am in my house that is located on this street.
- I am in my living room.
- I can see the sun is shining. I can feel the heat on my skin.
- My feet are planted on the ground.
- This will allow your brain to reassess threats and temporally suppress the thoughts you were having leaving room for clarity.
- Do some form for physical exercise, even if it’s brief (moderate to high intensity).
- This is a way to use a physical activity to overcome a mental problem.
- This will activate your reward system, producing endorphins that can create a joyful experience.
Focus on the Facts
- Stick to what you know is true about the situation you are dealing with.
- Our brains will fabricate false ideas, so it’s important to fact check them!
- Make a list or journal about how you are feeling in the moment, and then note the facts of the what’s stressing you below.
These are just a few steps you can take to address your overthinking. When down in the moments of mental chaos, overtime you will develop a habit subconsciously, so you will automatically resort to one of these strategies.
Leave a comment down below if of these strategies has worked for you!