Say stop in situations where you know you cannot think straight.
Sometimes when I am hungry or when I am lying in bed and are about to go to
sleep negative thoughts start buzzing around in my mind.
In the past they could do quite a bit of damage. Nowadays I have become good at
catching them quickly and to say to myself:
No, no, we are not going to think about this now.
I know that when I am hungry or sleepy then my mind sometimes tend to be
vulnerable to not thinking clearly and to negativity.
So I follow up my “no, no…” phrase and I say to myself that I will think this
situation or issue through when I know that my mind will work much better.
For example, after I have eaten something or in the morning after I have gotten
my hours of sleep.
I know from experience that when I revisit a situation with some level-headed
thinking then in 80% of the cases the issue is very small to nonexistent.
And if there is a real issue then my mind is prepared to deal with it in a much
better and more constructive way.
Another trap that I have fallen into many times that have spurred on
overthinking is that I have gotten lost in vague fears about a situation in my life.
And so my mind running wild has created disaster scenarios about what could
happen if I do something.
So I have learned to ask myself: honestly, what is the worst that could happen?
And when I have figured out what the worst that could happen actually is then I
can also spend a little time to think about what I can do if that often pretty
unlikely thing happens.
I have found that the worst that could realistically happen is usually something
that is not as scary as what my mind running wild with vague fear could produce.
Finding clarity in this way usually only takes a few minutes and bit of energy and
it can save you a lot of time and suffering.