Do you find yourself constantly dwelling on your thoughts and ideas, often to the point of creating worry or anxiety? This pattern of behavior is known as overthinking and can be a common cognitive trap that leads to indecisiveness, doubt, and self-criticism. One of the most essential things needed for great mental health is to have a clear and focused mind. It can be very difficult for some to manage the constant stream of thoughts going through our heads. Overthinking refers to the act of dwelling excessively on thoughts and ideas. This is often to the point of actually affecting one’s day to day life. It is a common cognitive pattern where an individual gets stuck in a cycle of analyzing and reanalyzing a situation, problem, or decision. It is very difficult to maneuver your future when you always have the past on your mind. Overthinking can take a variety of different forms.

Some of these forms include:

  • Replaying past events in your head and analyzing them in immense detail, this usually comes with feelings of regret or guilt.
  • Over analyzing present situations, trying to predict the outcome of future events, worrying about things that have no guarantee of happening.
  • Second guessing oneself and constantly seeking validation from other people. This could lead to feelings of inadequacy and low self esteem!
  • Being overly critical of oneself and everything around them. Focusing on your perceived flaws and weaknesses only takes away from your strength!

     Thankfully, there are some exercises that can help you become aware of your negative emotions without becoming them. With practice, one is able to recognize their negative feelings without letting it run their emotions. “Let go or be dragged” is a great buddhist quote that embodies how dreadful it is to stay stuck, whether it’s in the past or in your thoughts.

So, here are three  ways to gain more control over your mental landscape:

  • Meditation: Practicing mindfulness is a powerful way to quiet the mind and meditation focuses on you gaining control over your thoughts. By focusing your attention on your breath or a mantra, you’re able to reduce the mental clutter and gain some mental clarity!
  • Journaling: Writing down your thoughts is a helpful way to process your emotions, it gives you the chance to reflect on your thoughts which will make you feel more centered and grounded.
  • Gratitude Practices: Focusing on the things that make you grateful in life is so helpful. It can help you shift your perspective to more positive aspects of your life. You can do this by writing down what you’re grateful for, meditate with blessings and expressing gratitude towards others!

   There’s plenty of ways to channel your thoughts. There’s no need to be a prisoner of your mind! Gain more control over your mental landscape and incorporate these practices into your daily life. By practicing mindfulness, challenging your thoughts, setting boundaries, engaging in activities, and practicing self-compassion, you can learn to manage your thoughts and emotions effectively and break free from the cycle of overthinking. Try incorporating these strategies into your daily routine and notice how they can help you live a more balanced and fulfilling life.You’ll  see how your mental clarity and well being will  increase!