You've probably fallen into the trap of overthinking at one time or another in your life.
When you have a dilemma, the most natural response is to start problem-solving. So, you start thinking. And thinking. Racking your brain to find the solution. And maybe it doesn't happen overnight. So you think some more. And this leads to a bit of worry and fear. Then the worry and fear compound. And before you know it, your mind has become a runaway freight train.
The racing thoughts bombard your consciousness. You start worrying and feeling anxious all day long. And all night too. You lose sleep and feel just terrible. It's a thoroughly unpleasant experience.
If left unchecked for long periods, these repetitive, destructive thought patterns can lead to depression, anxiety disorders, and even suicidal ideation.
But if you practice the following techniques for just a few hours a week, you can banish negative thought patterns and stop overthinking for good.
1. Stay rooted in the present moment with yoga and exercise
The human mind loves to explore the past and the future, but the body always stays in the present (unless you have a DeLorean and a flux capacitor, but I digress). One of the best ways to reduce overthinking is to emphasize your connection to your body.
When you overthink, like cortisol and adrenaline are released into your bloodstream. These hormones are designed for fight or flight, but when you flood your system with them by constantly overthinking, they lead to a host of unpleasant bodily sensations like headaches, body aches, and physical lethargy. No fun at all.
If you want to stop ruminating, and simultaneously rid your system of the buildup of stress hormones, do some physical exercise like yoga. Try these , and see for yourself how a bit of exercise can cleanse your system, keep you rooted to the present, and lead to a host of other positive outcomes in life.
2. Pamper yourself and prioritize self-care
In the hustle and bustle of modern life, you probably don't schedule enough time off for your own well-being. You may spend your days in all sorts of stressful situations, but never prioritize taking time out to reduce stress. So the cycle of overthinking continues. And so do the . The anxiety, the sense that something is wrong in life, the worry that you made a wrong decision.
To break this cycle and get your mind going in the right direction, simply take some time to bring a little joy back into your life. Pamper yourself. Getaway with friends to a favorite retreat spot. Try out that new hobby you've been dreaming about. Enjoy that spa day you've been craving. The keyword here is ENJOY.
Scheduling time for these positive life experiences is one of the easiest ways to stop overthinking.
3. Calm your anxious brain with guided meditation
You may believe you are too busy for meditation. So you never stop moving, and you never stop thinking.
But the truth is, the busier you are, the more you'll benefit from the feelings of relaxation and deep rest you get from meditation. With regular practice, the tendency to overthink things will diminish. Negative mental patterns will be replaced with positive ones. Even your focus will increase, and you'll feel more aware.
The popular belief is that it's difficult to meditate. But with modern technology, it's easier than ever to find a guided meditation that works for you. By starting a simple habit of setting 20 minutes aside every day for meditation, you can finally experience what true rest feels like, and stop spending too much time in your head.
Click on the video below to try a wonderful guided meditation with world renowned humanitarian and spiritual leader Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and find more videos by .
4. Control negative thoughts and incessant worrying with breathwork
Once a negative thought process starts repeating in your mind, it clouds your perspective, and eventually takes over. Like a broken record scratching, repeating, and bothering you all day long.
You feel uneasy, so you talk to your clinical psychologist and do all the things she suggests. But sometimes nothing seems to help. You get to a point where all you can think about are the bad things in life. So what to do at a time like this?
Take a moment to breathe. Ancient yogis have known for thousands of years about how control of the breath for even a short time period can lead to a calmer mind and increased focus.
to learn more about easy breathwork techniques that can help soothe your overheated mind so you can experience deep relaxation and peace.
SKY Breath Meditation: A powerful technique to stop overthinking
There are many ways to reduce the harmful effects of overthinking, but what if there was a single, effective technique that encompassed them all?
Good news. There is.
is a simple breathwork exercise that can be practiced by anyone, and has been shown by more than 100 to reduce stress and anxiety, and improve overall mental well-being.
You can learn more about SKY Breath Meditation by attending a free breath and meditation online session. Just click on the image below to choose your day and time, and experience the benefits of a calm, centered mind for yourself.