How to silence overthinking when you are a highly sensitive person
Are you thinking things over and over again until you find yourself exhausted? In this blog, you'll get tips on how to silence overthinking!
If you are anything like me, you overthink... a lot. Highly sensitive people have a tendency to think thoughts that go into dimensions where no one's ever been before. I am not overexaggerating, it's true! If you are highly sensitive, you totally get what I mean.
Just thinking a thought and then letting it go seems like mission impossible. In fact, that's how it felt to me for a long time. I was so exhausted from the 'simple' act of thinking. People looked at me and my daily life as a student, and couldn't get how I possibly could be that exhausted! However, they didn't see what was going on inside my head...
I was worrying about my past, my present and my future, all at the same time. Actually, it was pretty chaotic in my mind back then. So what has changed since then? I have learned several techniques that help me to be more in the present and that taught me how to silence overthinking.
In this blog, I share practical tips on how to silence overthinking. I find these tips to be very useful on days where I lean towards overthinking it. Therefore, I hope that they will have the same effect on you!
The first thing I did in order to silence overthinking, was to deal with past traumas. Easier said than done, I get it! However, this is the first step in your journey towards a happier you! It certainly was for me.
You might wonder why on earth you would open up old wounds and feel the pain all over again. Ask yourself; would you rather prefer a quick but intense pain, or a long-term aching pain that never stops? I bet most people choose the first option.
In fact, when you choose NOT to heal your past traumas, you are hurting yourself over and over again each day. The pain tries to subside in your thoughts. Hence, the overthinking!
Working on healing from your past bad experiences is a very vulnerable but also empowering time of your life. Whereas it feels physically and mentally exhausting at first, you'll soon feel so much relieve when you finally understand certain thought patterns, their source and how to tackle them.
There are multiple ways in which you can face your demons. For me, the most effective way to start healing past traumas, was to see a therapist. My therapist helped me to dig up the stuff that really hurt me in the past and see where certain thought patterns originate from. In fact, the knowledge from these sessions was the very base for my emotional healing and start towards a better life.
For example, when I find myself in situations where I overthink, I almost immeditately am able to identify where the thought process started. 99% of the time it originates from one of my limiting beliefs about myself. Thanks to my therapist, I became very aware of these limiting beliefs.
If you prefer to do the work on your own, you might consider to try guided meditations. Often, they guide you in certain directions and help you to look at your situations from a different angle. Perhaps, you could try this meditation:
After understanding what my limiting beliefs are and where they come from, I started working on tackling them. For this, I had to become more emotionally balanced.
It is a shame to be reacting to every single trigger around you, while sometimes it is better to sit back and think rationally. Back when I started working on my emotional balance, I reacted to everything and everyone. Instead of rationalizing the input first, I immediately leaned towards my emotional side. This could sometimes result in unneccesary conflicts and misunderstandings. In fact, this was a sign that I was out of balance emotionally.
If you feel the same way, chances are big that you currently lean more towards the emotional at first and the rational when the heat is over. And that's when the overthinking starts. Could I have said something differently? Did I offend the other person with my emotion? What if they are mad at me? All of these thoughts occur when you're rushing into emotions without reassuring if they are justified.
So how can you get more emotionally balanced when you feel all the feels? In this blog, I share the methods that I used to become more emotionally balanced. You might want to take a look at it.
In the end, it is all about balance. Emotions are good and should definitely be felt, but sometimes it is good to confirm with rationality first, if you are interpreting things the right way. In most situations, we interpret what someone says or does in a different way than they intended it to come across. It would be a shame to shed tears on something that in the end is just happening inside your mind, right?
Once I felt that I was more emotionally stable, I decided to maintain my (mental) health. Our health needs to be checked up on regularly, just like a car. It needs to be maintained. Therefore, once you feel more at peace with your past and are more emotionally stable, I highly recommend you to develop healthy habits.
For me, I decided to make conscious self care a daily priority and I also chose to eat healthier and exercise more. This has helped me to maintain a rather stable level of happiness. Of course, I still do have bad days sometimes, but I manage to deal with them much better now. I believe that my conscious attitude with regards to self-care and good health have much to do with this. Moreover, maintaining my (mental) health has helped me to silence overthinking to a great degree.
If you want to improve your health, you might want to try one of these free apps to help you with that.
One of my favorite methods for how to silence overthinking is to journal. Once I acknowledge that I am overthinking it, I grab my journal and write down my thoughts. This is an amazing technique to see where your thought started and to understand where it is heading. Also, it helps you greatly to get the thoughts out of your mind.
If you are someone who struggles with overthinking before bedtime, I highly recommend you to journal before going to bed. In this way, you can empty your mind and sleep more peacefully.
Highly sensitive people are known to often be very creative, so why not get a bullet journal which you can design according to your own needs?
I swear by meditation. It truly is one of the best ways for me to silence overthinking. Not only does it help me to be more present in the here and now, but it also is a fantastic way to tackle anxiety. Overthinking and anxiety often go hand in hand for me, so once I meditate, I tackle both of these challenges.
There are different ways to meditate and there are meditations out there for everyone. I myself prefer spiritual meditations, but I can imagine that many of you want something that is less spiritually loaded. In that case, I highly recommend you to download the app Calm, which is a mindfulness- and meditation app that brings you to the here and now.
If you want to give meditation a go right after reading this article, you might want to try this meditation:
Finally, one method which I truly love (but do wayy too rarely) is Yoga! Yoga helps you, just like meditation, to be in the here and now. Also, being consciously active with your body helps you to silence overthinking.
Often, doing Yoga brings along wise lessons which you can take with you into your daily life. It is a beautiful activity that truly aligns mind and body. Therefore, I highly recommend you to try Yoga when you feel that you overthink too much.
Right now, you might overthink this and wonder if you will manage to silence overthinking. Believe me, you can! I was very anxious and continuously overthinking everything back when I first started my journey towards a happier life. Now, I feel so at peace with who I am and what I do. It has been a long road and I still am not there, but the inner peace the activities above gave me is amazing!
If I can make it, you can make it! Believing in yourself and the progress is the first step. Good luck with your journey towards a more calm life!