Oct 6, 2020

Clarity Of Mind | How To Stop Overthinking

It is the nature of the mind to think; to analyze, remember and evaluate. It is a fantastic tool, if used like a muscle, activated when needed, to accomplish a specific task. Too often, however, we seem to have lost control over it, it has a life of its own. Over and over we go back in forth in our mind, tiring and exhausting ourselves, yet not being able to let go of the spiral of thoughts, ultimately building up tension in our minds and bodies.

This habit gets us stuck in our head, holding us back from taking decisions and living life spontaneously; depriving us of enjoyment, freedom and presence in the moment.

Overthinking happens to all of us, including me, someone who is trained in meditation and the art of letting go. But my obsessive thinking decreased extremely over the years, as I learned how to deal with it and how to relieve myself. Ease comes faster now, tension resolves easier, and I experience more frequent and longer periods of peace of mind.

In this article I want to share some valuable tools and approaches, that have helped me immensely and still do every day.

You clicked on this article because the headline seemed to have resonated with you and this is your first important step: Awareness is the beginning of change. To be able to change your habits and implement new patterns of thoughts and behaviors, you need to notice your current ones.

Read on to learn how to change your thinking patterns and find more clarity and peace of mind.

Become still.

Mediation and mindfulness exercises are not about forcefully trying to still your mind. Instead they teach you to focus your mind on one object of attention, such as your breath, a mantra or something you look at. You let your thoughts come and go, without starting a conversation in your head, without identifying with them, learning to observe and detach. Imagine your mind as a blue windy sky on which thoughts just pass by like clouds, coming and going. I know this is sometimes easier said than done, but it gets better each time you practice – that is right, it is a practice, and with time it brings clarity and peace with it.

Distract yourself.

When a specific topic or a situation gives you a hard time, take your focus off it. Even acute situations can be left for a moment and returned to at a later time with a clearer mind. Distract yourself with something that feels good and natural to you. Do something with your attention, your body, or your hands. It could be a workout, a run or walk, cooking something delicious or reading something so interesting that you indulge in it fully. Give yourself a rest.

Deliberately choose your thoughts.

If you just can’t take your mind off it and have to think about it after all, then choose your thoughts deliberately and wisely. Instead of thinking what can go wrong, think of everything that could go right, everything that is good about it, everything you like about it and everything that has worked out well for you in similar circumstances. Our emotions are a result of our thoughts, always. So, don’t let that voice in your head tell you that you are not good enough, not valued enough, nothing ever works for you, etc. Choose your own thoughts and therefore the way you feel.

Let go of perfectionism.

Accept that you cannot ever predict the future. No matter how many scenarios you play out in your head, you will never actually know it advance and you can’t prepare yourself for every possible outcome anyway. There are many ways of how things could go, and many of them are good. There is not one solution or outcome. Life is a continuous journey with twists and turns and it is what makes it wonderful and interesting.

Trust yourself.

Why would you want to know exactly how things will go in advance anyway? Make peace with yourself and trust that you will know how to react in real life situations when you actually face them. Know that you have accomplished so many things before, you have often achieved what you wanted, and you will again. My wise father always says 'Don't meet trouble half way'.

Accept yourself.

Even if you can’t stop overthinking, even after trying all the above, know that we all struggle with this at times. It is ok, you are human. You head means well, trying to prepare and protect you. Look for ease, rather than putting more pressure onto yourself. Tell yourself ‘I am getting better at this; I am doing just fine’.

Be grateful.

Be a conscious witness to the all good things that are around you. Why not spend time on cultivating positive thoughts? There are always things that are going well, things that we don’t worry about. Think about them, cherish them and feel blessed for everything you have. Appreciation brings a wonderful feeling of wellbeing and ease with it.


It can still happen, it happens to me, too. But knowing your tools to get out of your head and into a vibration of ease, softness and surrender, you’ll be able to leave the spiral faster and more often and cultivate a sense of trust and appreciation.

I hope these little tips and inspirations help you to find more moments of clarity and peace. I would love to hear from you and your opinions and favorite tools.

Love from me to you,

Jenny

Photos 1. Daniel Willis (https://danielwillis.co), 2. Rachel Strong (unsplash), 3. Mr Marco (unsplash)

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