Brooding over thoughts will most likely have a negative outcome on your psyche. It’s very easy to stay focused on the negative things that happen in life. Maybe there’s a break up that you went through, but can’t get over. Or your boss said something to you that was quite offensive, but you can’t shake the opinion. We call this ruminating; repetitive, passive brooding. It can be the trigger needed for more long-term depression.
The problem with ruminating on negative events is that it begins you trying to predict things that will happen in the future. You start making stories based on your past negative experiences, believing that these stories are true. The ability to release bad thoughts brings you down altogether. You rehash these stories, but have no solution. It makes you believe that you have no control of your situation.
Rehearsing the negative emotions and events does nothing but give them more power. The stress and anxiety of just thinking becomes bigger than life. This is where my definition of depression comes from. It’s rumination of the past. Thinking and believing the past only brings negative circumstances to a person’s present.
Effects of Overthinking
Depression looks like someone who is disinterested in just about everything. You can also see it in some symptoms such as eating habits, tiredness, trouble concentrating, or feelings of unworthiness. Overthinking can increase these symptoms if they are already shown in mild cases.
Rumination can also lead to binge eating as an active way of take a break from thoughts. Nothing says turn off the thoughts like a tub of ice cream and your favorite glass of scotch. You can only do that for so long until the thoughts come back.
Give Your Brain a Rest
The best thing you can do for your brain when your overthinking is to try not to think of anything at all. Find positive distractions that will get you out of your head. A good idea is to be more physical. Get involved with a sport, or hit the weights. If you can meet up with friends, the better the hobby.
The next thing to do is to look at possibilities rather than problems. Okay, you were fired from your job. It doesn’t help to think about the fateful day you had to pack everything in a box. Instead let’s think about your next journey in your career. Start by writing new goals for yourself. Maybe it’s time to take a new class to gain new skills. Do what you need to do now to make sure you have a better future.