The human mind is a work of wonder. It controls the functions of our body, stores our memories, and houses feelings of happiness, fear, sorrow, and excitement.The mind is also where our thought process originates. As important to daily life as our constant train of thought is, it can lead to overthinking and that can be your biggest foe.
Overthinking is excessively processing and reprocessing your thoughts, rarely for the sake for finding a solution but instead just to dwell on scenarios in your life. This sort of pointless consideration has the potential to be the worse morale killer you will encounter.
A study by UC Santa Barbara found compelling evidence of just that. In researching overthinking and how it operates with our minds, lead author of the study, Taraz Lee, found that overthinking (referred to scientifically as explicit memory) when highly stimulated can “directly interfere with implicit memory”.
That interference caused by overthinking can lead to self doubt. Self doubt can lead to questioning your actions, decisions and, ultimately, your worth. Overthinking appears as a voice, first a whisper but louder over time, that says you aren’t good enough, smart enough, or worth enough. It weakens your resolve and leaves you vulnerable to misguided questioning. Misguided questioning, those intrusive doubts that pop into your head when obsessively overthinking, can lead to self sabotage and can hold you back from seeking the things you want in life.
Self sabotage is an easy trap to fall into but it does not have to be inevitable. You can make the conscious choice to stop problematic thoughts from looping continuously in your mind. You can tell yourself that you are good enough and that you deserve happiness. All you have to do is stop getting in your own way.
The easiest way to do this is by setting boundaries for yourself
Practice mindfulness-meaning try spending more time in the moment instead of in regrets of the past or worries for the future. A study by Yale University’s Department of Psychology found that mindfulness promotes positive mental health.Turn overthinking into a conversation between you and your brain and establish that you will no longer allow yourself to be defeated by your thoughts.
Once you reign in your thought process, you will be on your way to a free state of mind.
T.D. Jakes is a charismatic leader, visionary, provocative thinking, entrepreneur and compassion humanitarian with a voice that has reverberated from the world's most prominent stages. His look at life comes from the perspective of a father, a student, a pastor and a friend. His daytime talk show will be premiering this fall across the nation. Follow @tdjakesshow on Twitter!