This morning while texting my mother about my to-do list for the week, I mentioned that I was hoping for progress on one of my projects and ready to move onto the next stage. Her advice to me was “try not to overthink it”, and to that I responded “I don’t know how to not overthink things but I will try to trust that the universe has my back.”
In a world that never stops moving, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of overthinking. For many of us, the constant pressure to excel, make the right choices, and navigate the complexities of life can lead to a never-ending cycle of overanalyzing and second-guessing ourselves. It's as if we believe that overthinking is the key to control.
I think I do my best overthinking while scrolling through social media. A few months ago, I commented on @garyfromconnecticut's Instagram reel about overthinkers, saying, "Because if I don't overthink it who will? So my overthinking is an act of survival."
While this statement may hold a grain of truth, the key is finding balance—recognizing when to tap into our thoughts and when to release them into the universe. Here are three tips to help you strike that balance and avoid succumbing to overthinking:
- Embrace Imperfection:
Overthinking often stems from the desire for perfection. Remember that it's okay not to have all the answers or to make mistakes. Embrace the journey, learn from missteps, and grow stronger in the process. Imperfection is a beautiful part of our human experience.
- Set Clear Boundaries:
One way to manage overthinking is to establish clear boundaries. Allow yourself a certain amount of time to think through a decision or situation, and once that time is up, trust your instincts and take action. Overthinking tends to creep in when we endlessly postpone decisions.
- Focus on the Present:
Don't look back you're not going that way*. Shift your focus to the present moment. It's where you can truly make a difference. Engage in mindfulness practices, such as meditation, that help center your thoughts and anchor you in the here and now.
Overthinking may occasionally serve a purpose, but try to let it help not hinder you. It's crucial to know when to let go and trust in your intuition. Recognizing when to release control and trust your inner wisdom is the key. Embracing imperfection, setting clear boundaries, and centering your focus on the present moment are steps toward finding that balance. This week I challenge you not to get lost in the weeds of your overthinking. Your resilience is rooted in the journey, so make the most of it, learn from it, and then let it go.
*quote by Mary Engelbreit