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How We Let Go of Overthinking

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. So today I'm going to share with you a three step process to help you become free of the habit of overthinking so that you can unlock your ability to navigate daily life with more mental clarity, wisdom, and inner strength. So the first step is to recognize unhelpful thought patterns when they arise. So there's certain patterns that are, uh, quite prominent in this habit of overthinking. The two of them, are ruminating and worrying.

So ruminating often involves replaying the past. So perhaps it's regrets or mistakes that have been made. It might involve really harsh self-judgment. So it sounds a little bit like these kinds of thoughts, you know? Um, well, I shouldn't have said that stupid comment today. I made an idiot of myself.

Or it might sound like, Oh, my teachers at school always told me I wouldn't get far in life. I guess they were right. Um, or, you know, I can't believe I left my old job. That was the dumbest thing I've ever done. I had one chance to be happy and I blew it.

So those kinds of thoughts are rumination thoughts. And then worrying thoughts involves the mind casting into the future and imagining things that could go wrong. So it often involves these, like what if scenarios or catastrophizing about the worst thing that could possibly happen? It might sound like this kind of thought. My relationship probably won't last much longer. He's going to find someone better or she's going to find someone better and I'm going to end up alone.

Or it might be, what if I lose my job? I don't know if I'm performing that well, so I might be on the verge of being fired. I won't be able to pay rent. What will I do? Um, or it might be like, you know what, if my kids aren't there for me, when I'm old, I'll probably just end up in a nursing home, miserable. So. If any of these sounds familiar, you know, it's because rumination and worry are very, very common.

They're also very rarely constructive or helpful. They tend to just clutter our minds and cause a lot of psychological suffering. So step two, once you recognize that you've been stuck in rumination or worry is to ask yourself, is this actually helping me to solve something or take empowered action right now? Right. And step three is to choose a more empowering option. There is a difference between taking time out to constructively solve a problem, or make a plan and simply ruminating or worrying about it.

So constructive problem solving or planning is where you take time to just think clearly about the different options and possibilities and then, if possible, you make a decision. After that, you can just leave it. Rumination and worry is when you're just tossing around a problem in your head without any true intention to solve it. That's painful. So one empowering way forward is, could be this constructive problem solving or planning.

And the other option, if the problem doesn't actually need to be solved immediately, you can just let it go and put your focus on something more nourishing. So by letting go of overthinking, you'll be able to think more clearly and maintain inner peace. You can take action on the things that matter, let go of the things that don't and be more present to enjoy your daily life.

Melli O'Brien

4.7

How We Let Go of Overthinking

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Hi, welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. So today I'm going to share with you a three step process to help you become free of the habit of overthinking so that you can unlock your ability to navigate daily life with more mental clarity, wisdom, and inner strength. So the first step is to recognize unhelpful thought patterns when they arise. So there's certain patterns that are, uh, quite prominent in this habit of overthinking. The two of them, are ruminating and worrying.

So ruminating often involves replaying the past. So perhaps it's regrets or mistakes that have been made. It might involve really harsh self-judgment. So it sounds a little bit like these kinds of thoughts, you know? Um, well, I shouldn't have said that stupid comment today. I made an idiot of myself.

Or it might sound like, Oh, my teachers at school always told me I wouldn't get far in life. I guess they were right. Um, or, you know, I can't believe I left my old job. That was the dumbest thing I've ever done. I had one chance to be happy and I blew it.

So those kinds of thoughts are rumination thoughts. And then worrying thoughts involves the mind casting into the future and imagining things that could go wrong. So it often involves these, like what if scenarios or catastrophizing about the worst thing that could possibly happen? It might sound like this kind of thought. My relationship probably won't last much longer. He's going to find someone better or she's going to find someone better and I'm going to end up alone.

Or it might be, what if I lose my job? I don't know if I'm performing that well, so I might be on the verge of being fired. I won't be able to pay rent. What will I do? Um, or it might be like, you know what, if my kids aren't there for me, when I'm old, I'll probably just end up in a nursing home, miserable. So. If any of these sounds familiar, you know, it's because rumination and worry are very, very common.

They're also very rarely constructive or helpful. They tend to just clutter our minds and cause a lot of psychological suffering. So step two, once you recognize that you've been stuck in rumination or worry is to ask yourself, is this actually helping me to solve something or take empowered action right now? Right. And step three is to choose a more empowering option. There is a difference between taking time out to constructively solve a problem, or make a plan and simply ruminating or worrying about it.

So constructive problem solving or planning is where you take time to just think clearly about the different options and possibilities and then, if possible, you make a decision. After that, you can just leave it. Rumination and worry is when you're just tossing around a problem in your head without any true intention to solve it. That's painful. So one empowering way forward is, could be this constructive problem solving or planning.

And the other option, if the problem doesn't actually need to be solved immediately, you can just let it go and put your focus on something more nourishing. So by letting go of overthinking, you'll be able to think more clearly and maintain inner peace. You can take action on the things that matter, let go of the things that don't and be more present to enjoy your daily life.

Melli O'Brien

4.7

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