Are you an overthinker? I’ve been someone who overthinks my entire life, which certainly didn’t help my anxiety. Over time, I’ve managed it more, but I still have moments when I can become consumed by my thoughts.
I still struggle with the need to meet expectations of others, and those expectations can sometimes fuel my sense of self-worth. This may come as a shock to some since I’ve done so much work to learn to love myself and fight away so many years of self-hate. I mean, my career is to empower others to love themselves. But, I am only human and I still struggle sometimes. Thankfully, I am constantly reminded by my amazing support system that being vulnerable about the struggles I still have, only makes my work that much more impactful.
Sometimes after a speech, especially in this virtual world, I can have no idea if I made an impact or not. And then boom, overthinking mode commences. It can be really easy to get wrapped up in one moment and ask yourself, “well what if?” and “did I do this or that right or wrong?”, or “did they like me? Oh no, what if they didn’t like me?”
I’m sure many of you can relate to some of these thoughts that consume your days.
But what I like to do in these moments and what I encourage you to do is when you are unsure of yourself and your thoughts that aren’t so comforting, begin to take over, is to remind yourself of what you’ve done and where your worth truly comes from.
Remind yourself that you can’t change the past. And instead of thinking of all of the things you may have done wrong, or that could go wrong, instead think of all of the things that have gone right, and fuel positivity into the future.
So I ground myself in the current moment. And take time to point out all that went right, despite my moment of negative overthinking. I take time to point out other speeches that I made such a huge impact that was visually seen through a standing ovation, or through hugs and tears of joy at the end. And those memories center me. Those memories help to fend off the negative thoughts.
If you’ve been an overthinker your entire life, it’s not always easy to calm those overwhelming thoughts. But come back to this current moment. Fill this moment with as much positivity as possible, fill it with memories of times that made you feel alive and proud of yourself, and fill it with hope and light for the future. Provide praise to yourself for all you have done, for all those moments in your life that have proved that all of the negative thoughts about you are wrong. Provide compassion for yourself for those moments of negativity, remembering that you are only human.
Those thoughts of negativity will come and go throughout our lifetime. Once we can come to terms with the fact that those thoughts are part of our journey, we can embrace them and realize that it isn’t about being positive or happy all of the time, but that it’s about being able to think our thoughts and feel our feelings and decide to feel empowered to keep moving forward anyway. Deciding to stay true to who we are, no matter what inside or outside voices tell us. Deciding to fill ourselves with thoughts and activities that make us feel better about who we are and what we bring to this world.
You might not always feel positive and you might struggle with overthinking, but that is okay and is part of the journey. Continue to push forward. Some days will be harder than others. All of these moments are here to help us to grow. So the next time that you are overthinking and feeling negative, you can stop those thoughts by remembering all of the good that you have done, and get back to loving the amazing person that you are.
Keep going, you have come so far. And you are worthy just because you are you.
Cheers to knowing that sometimes we may overthink, but if we are intentional about filling ourselves with good and surrounding ourselves with people who lift us higher, we can fend off those thoughts and continue on, full of strength, self-love and compassion.