Are you thinking or overthinking?
Is overthinking a problem?
Daily, we face situations that don’t need much thought and deliberation to make decisions. There are also some when you must think deeply – like, buying a house or getting married. And most importantly, decide so there is a “closure” of thoughts.
Unfortunately, some find it difficult to control their thought process. They get sucked deeper into a whirlpool of analysis caused by overthinking. The continual train of thoughts – like, what if my decision goes wrong, what if it upsets somebody – keeps playing in a loop in their heads. Overthinking, also called rumination, pushes them to a point of inaction with the potential to disturb their daily routine.
How do identify an Overthinker?
Drawing a clear line of distinction between thinking and overthinking is not easy, given that it is subjective and hence open to different opinions. However, people struggling with overthinking show specific indications:
- Difficulty to decide even in routine aspects like shopping
- Switching from one worry to another
- Lack of focus
- Disturbed sleep
- Need for constant reassurance
It is not uncommon for “overthinkers” to argue that they think long and hard to avoid or solve a problem. They do not know that overthinking and problem-solving are not two sides of the same coin. With problem-solving, the mind looks for answers; with overthinking, it looks for analysis. They hit a stonewall because of stagnancy in thoughts.
Is Overthinking a mental disorder?
No. It is a behavioural issue that can be corrected. However, if left unaddressed, overthinking can lead to anxiety and depression. At this stage, even the family and work are impacted. The sooner we help the person extricate himself from the chain of purposeless thoughts that have tied him down, the better for him.
A simple and effective way to treat an overthinking mind is through meditation.
How does Meditation help Overthinking?
The first step to solving any problem is acknowledging that it exists. The beauty of mediation is in its ability to help you accept that you have difficulty. Once you become aware, action will follow.
Meditation does this effectively by awakening us gently to our deep fears, desires, and worries. With this, half the battle is already won; the other half – defeating overthinking and winning a calm and clear mind – is easily achieved through regular meditation.
Talking specifically about overthinking, it is a manifestation of the worry that you might make wrong decisions. This is a result of a lack of confidence and compassion for oneself. Meditation tackles this in three ways:
- Calming your mind and body so you can observe your thoughts
- Regulating your emotions to gain clarity
- Awareness that outcomes are not controllable (thereby solving overthinking)
The real power of meditation lies in its unique ability to get to the bottom of the mind. The seeds of all our feelings – anxiety, anger, overthinking, lack of focus – are planted there. As a one-stop remedy, meditation weeds out the negative feelings and blossoms the positive ones.
Where to begin – Heartfulness
Heartfulness Meditation prepares you to face any situation confidently including overthinking, and not be covered by them. You learn to become dispassionate about situations and people that once caused anxiety. And turn more compassionate towards yourself and others.
When you begin meditating for the first time, sitting in silence even for a short period without overthinking could be daunting. But you would soon discover how just sitting motionless has brought a certain calmness to your mind. By practicing daily, you will see your transformation into a person of poise and confidence.
Heartfulness meditation requires three must-dos:
- Practice daily. Start with shorter sessions, and increase the duration gradually.
- Just watch your thoughts. Don’t judge or analyze.
- Seat yourself comfortably in a quiet place. Anything or anyone that distracts
should be away.
Removing your shoes, jewelry, or any apparel that restricts movement is advisable. After choosing a time and place for your daily Heartfulness meditation, follow these four things.
Choose a comfortable position
Some people sit cross-legged with their backs straight on the floor. You can, however, choose your comfortable posture. Floor, sofa, or armchair – anything is fine. Sit with your legs extended out, and your back erect.
Don’t be too comfortable, or else you risk falling asleep instead of neutralizing overthinking. You may change your position at any time if you feel any discomfort.
Bring your attention to here and now
Sit comfortably and quietly. Direct your attention inwards. Close your eyes and concentrate on the divine light within. If you find your mind straying and starts overthinking, bring back your focus inward. Once you’re aware of the divine light and the pull it has on you, relax by allowing it to go deeper.
Recognize your thoughts
In the initial days, you may feel a surge of emotions like worry and self-judgment resulting from overthinking. Am I doing it right? What am I supposed to do? Recognize this inner conflict. Don’t suppress or answer it. It will disappear on its own. By doing so, you will learn to handle difficult people and situations without reacting. Soon, you will feel calmer and less anxious.
Complete your Heartfulness Meditation
Open your eyes when you feel you’ve reached the end of meditation or the necessary amount of time has passed. Do some light stretches to ease yourself gradually from your meditative state. Reflect on your practice for a moment.
Begin by meditating for three to five minutes a day. As you become comfortable, increase the duration to 15 minutes, then to 30 minutes, and 45 minutes after that.
How will Heartfulness App help
Heartfulness App helps people attain their peak performance through meditation. Daily meditation with Heartfulness App boosts cognitive and emotional health through guided, self-care meditation.
All you need is a phone with an internet connection. Meditating with Heartfulness app is easy, effective, and FREE.
The app has everything you need to get the best from your meditation time.
- Set your meditation goals
- Track your performance in the app journal
- Meditate in private or in a group
- Take the help of a trainer
When can I see the results?
You will experience calm and clarity during and soon after meditation. Much like how you look after body health, you should invest in mental health also through meditation. A sound mind will become part of your persona if regularly practiced.
Download the App. Schedule a session. Feel the change.
Sathish Rajamani is an advertising professional, writer and literary translator. He has written many advertising campaigns, blog content and business features. His interests are learning Carnatic music, visiting ancient temples and practising meditation.