Overthinking  is one of the most common issues that holds men back from taking action and enjoying life. In fact: Overthinking kills your happiness.

If you ever felt ‘stuck in your head’ or caught up in ‘overthinking’ a situation; you’re definitely not alone.

It is a near universal human trait.

In life, it will be a person’s ability to handle these thought patterns that differenciates them as people with happy, fulfilled and autonomous personalities from the people with the average, struggling people.

Often people are not aware what the habit of ‘overthinking’ has already cost them in their lives.

While ‘being stuck’ in our heads, we fail to take action towards what we really want. We fail to enjoy the moment. We seek happiness.

Overthinking is one of the most common issues in society. By understanding the ‘why’ and where those ‘fears’ are coming from, you’re on a more sure path to becoming more present, with more power and more energy to take action towards the things you really want to achieve.

In this article I share with you 3 simple steps, that help you to be present and to take things forward when you’re stuck in your head.

Where are those overthinking-patterns coming from?

Overthinking is simply an avoidance mechanism. It fits right into the list of checking the Facebook-Wall on our phones, when we feel uncomfortable.

Human beings tend to be stuck in stories, they make up for themselves. So we either feel bad about the past story or worry about the future. This avoids what’s most important. It avoids the present moment.

Something within is not comfortable with the present moment. Recognising this discomfort, gives us a clear key where we have to work on.

1. Zoom out and ask yourself: Is the act of ‘overthinking’ serving you in this moment?

As we think about the past or the future, we spend time with thoughts that are often not relevant to this moment.

The human mind is incredibly powerful in making up past and future stories to protect you from threat. It’s designed to let you survive in this world. But those stories are often not even true, and often they don’t serve you.

A simple thought can trigger a whole chain of worries, because we’re keep adding additional stories to that thought. We end up being the victim of our own horror stories.

People tend to identify themselves with those thoughts and that’s how depression or loneliness get triggered.

Questioning those stories will help you to detach and disidentify from them.

So the first step is to become a detective of your own thoughts.

Ask yourself:

–Is this story I’m telling myself true?

–Are these thoughts serving me in this moment?

–Who would I be without this thought?

For that, I highly recommend you Byron Katies work. She is one of my heroes, when it comes to question our identities and stories. Or check my article on how to deal with a lack of confidence.

2. The act of appreciation will free you from overthinking

We tend to always focus on what we aspire to and forget what we have.

Become aware of what is already around you.

Appreciation brings you right back into the moment. It has been proven in multiple studies. And most likely, you have experienced this in your own life to. This doesn’t have to mean intense feelings of appreciation and gratitude, but relaxing and allowing yourself to enjoy what is in front of you.

Overthinking is usually related to stress, stress appears when we worry about something. Appreciation is related with easy and calmness – calmness appears when we accept what is.

Acts of appreciation, changed my life. And I started to make it a habit. When I find myself worrying for too long, I just slow down, and ask myself the following questions:

–What am I grateful for?

–What do I appreciate in my life? What can I appreciate in my life?

–What is beautiful and interesting in this moment?

It’s scientifically proven that appreciation literally changes the energy levels in our bodies.

As we learn to appreciate the 'small' things in life, our world changes.
As we learn to appreciate the ‘small’ things in life, our world changes. Photo by unsplash.

Step 3: Overthinking disappears when you learn to accept yourself

Learning to accept yourself is the ultimate path of self-growth.

All the suffering exists because we don’t trust ourselves.

We are stuck in past and future thoughts because of a lack of faith in the present moment – and ultimately in ourselves. Usually it’s a fear of unworthiness, of failure or of not being loved.

Overthinking is one of the biggest avoidance mechanisms we have in our society. Because it’s the easiest one. Even easier than picking up the phone and check the Facebook newsfeed. Our thoughts are always available and our minds are incredibly good in making up stories.

But what those stories do is, that they hold us back from speaking our truth and from taking action. From going what we truly want from our heart.

Learn to accept yourself. This isn’t always an easy task, I know. But it is a gradual process of awareness. It’s a journey you can decide to go. A journey back to yourself. To me there is one particular thing I do over and over again for myself, and during my trainings and coachings with my clients.

Slowing down.

Something most people don’t dare to do, because they have to go to the next thing. They don’t allow themselves to stop for a second. But as we slow down, we see what can’t be seen, when we are in a hurry. It’s a game changer and it works not only for you internally, but also in social situations.

Slow down to speed up.

As you find yourself overthinking the situation, give yourself a moment. Check in. Take a deep breath. And let yourself know that it’s fine, that you don’t have to be afraid.

Allow yourself to make mistakes. Allow yourself to have flaws. And know that you are perfect already deeply within.

A beautiful process from overthinking to being present

Overthinking situations are normal. Like I said, it’s a part of being human in our current culture.

As you commit to this journey of self-acceptance, you will find yourself experiencing overthinking less and less. And you’ll start to understand your core-being better.

This leads not only to a deeper sense of trust, but also to confidence and a feeling of well being.

Ultimately you’ll get to a place where you can express ourselves fully. Where you are not afraid of making mistakes anymore, because you’ll know whatever happens, you’ll be fine.

[Video] How to get out of your Head

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Question: In what situations in particular do you experience a feeling of being stuck in your head? Please let me know in the comments.

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