UnCharted Path Productions presents: Let's Talk About - Over-Thinking
Updated: Dec 12, 2022
Weekly Mental Digest
Over-Thinking: What does that look like?
by Shari Wilson, Psy. M.
September 30, 2022
Photo by Strategic Psychology.
Welcome Back to my virtual office!!!! Today we will focus on “Overthinking”.
What is overthinking?
The question is, where does it come from and what can we do to control it? Let's work through this!
The act of overthinking is often a manifestation of past trauma, whether it was caused by a situation or by depression as a result of something or someone. When such moments occur, one can descend into an overwhelming state of emotions.
This can exacerbate existing triggers and disorders, such as anxiety and/or depression. Let's review a hypothetical scenario in more detail.
Imagine I'm at the end of the day and I'm overanalyzing and overthinking what happened earlier. The thought has been bothering me for some time now. A coworker commented that I was not holding my weight at work and that they wouldn't help me, but instead go out of their way to force me to get the job done.
In my head, I play different scenarios based on this simple remark. One question is, if we're both adults, why is she complaining to a coworker about my issue? Is my work performance really lacking? Absolutely not.
What else have they said? Is everyone this shady? Should I confront them or let them come to me? Do I even really need this job? Ok ok seriously though, I need to stop thinking about this because it is not important and I need to go to bed.
*1 minute later*
The case of the 'what ifs' (insert side-eye here)
What if she tries to say something to me at work?
What if she acts like I don't know what she said?
What if I just go off right then and there?
What if I act normal until a little later and pull her to the side?
W A I T, why does she deserve to get pulled to the side when she can’t even give me the same decency? FOR HER INFORMATION I DO MY JOB, and I do it well, as a mater of fact, better than her, besides people enjoy being around me, unlike her.
W A I T, why do I care? Like what is wrong with me that I am letting someone that i do not consider close to me or even hold weight to my life to be sitting up thinking about what she said about ME. A
Am I ok? Come on Shari STOP IT. You’re not better than her BUT you ARE better than this whole “being affected” by words situation. These questions usually continue on throughout the entire night, cutting into your time to rest before the start of a new day. And one of the worse things to do is to wake up even more tired than when you laid down, simply because you weren’t able to turn your brain off. Now that we have a baseline scenario of what overthinking looks like, let's see exactly what this is. According to, The Happiness Blog “Overthinking is the process of repetitively thinking about the causes and consequences of a perceived problem or stressful situation.”
Step 1: Notice when you are overthinking
Sooooooooo, where do I go from here to stop this process that is not be working in my favor? First start would be noticing that I am overthinking. AS SOON AS you notice that the overthinking has started; identify it. Once I realized that I was awake at 3am thinking about something that wasn't important, I was able to identify what I was doing. That's when I asked myself, now what?
Step 2: Challenge your thoughts
Here I have seen that I am overthinking something I should not let affect me like it has, so I check to see if this is even really worth me giving it more than one or two thoughts. IT DEFINITELY WAS NOT! At this moment, I remind myself of that. I also remind myself of my motto that NO ONE can change my emotions unless I ALLOW them to and if I ALLOW them,...
WHY AM I ALLOWING IT?
MY EMOTIONS are determined by what I allow so let’s try to not allow this, because I DESERVE POSITIVITY.
WHEN I CHANGE MY THOUGHTS FROM ALLOWING PEOPLE TO DICTATE MY THOUGHTS, it snatches me back from that overthinking spiral. So check the validity of who you're allowing to dictate your thoughts and remember that YOU and ONLY YOU are in charge of what affects you, therefore if you don’t like something; remind yourself of what you are and aren’t ok with, which is you refocusing on something else. Set up some boundaries, let's start practicing problem solving and tapping into that positive thinking.
Step 3: Practice problem solving
Here is where we try to find a solution to our issue instead of continuously dwelling on it. I know we've heard the phrase before, Don’t Talk About It, Be About It! What was my problem, the fact that I was being talked about at work, instead of being addressed by someone I thought respected me; and I her. A possible solution could be, I know that what she is saying is not true so just let it go, because other employees including management know that she is just being messy and enjoy disrupting others' peace, for the sake of her own. Another way I can approach her is in a non-confrontational way because there is no need to work in a hostile work environment, especially knowing that could do more harm than good for not only us but every one that work around us.
If I do decide to pull her aside, while not coming off in a disrespectful manner, I can let her know that I don’t want her to feel like I am not holding my weight at work. I will make sure that she does not have to do anything past her job description so that she won’t be forced to be overworked, due to what she thinks is me not doing my job. This approach will ensure that I will not engage with her in a manner that seems as though I am bringing the same drama that she brought to other coworkers when she chose to speak to them instead of me. It will not be a he said - she said scenario, because she will feel like the person that she spoke to (although it wasn't told in confidence) ran and told me. Either approach will give off a more professional stance and put an end this overthinking situation.
It is a process to work through, but it is definitely worth the time to adjust, because it helps so much. We just have to take it one step at a time: notice when you are overthinking, challenge your thoughts, and then practice problem solving. These three steps will help lead you in the right direction to a healthy way of thinking and ultimately a healthy mental state.
YOU GOT THIS!!!!!
WE’VE GOT THIS!!!!
NOW LET'S DO IT!!!!!
It was so great chatting with you all this week. REMEMBER I'm just an email away, so feel free to reach out. We can work on these three steps together along with whatever else. I am all about getting you to the best you possible!!!
Talk to you next week!!! byeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee......
About the writer:
Shari Wilson has a genuine heart to listen to anyone who shares their experiences, traumas, or just life in general. She studied at Purdue Global University, acquiring her Bachelor’s degree in Applied Behavioral Analysis and Addictions Psychology in 2016. On the path to furthering her studies, she received her Master of Psychology in 2018 from Purdue Global University. Since then she has been enamored with the ability to use her education to help others through difficult times.
She is a Consulting Psychologist for UnCharted Path Productions, working on the upcoming psychological thriller series titled, “Hidden District”. She is a mom of 3, a wife, and an amazing friend to those around her. If you would like to get in contact with her regarding a counseling session, please email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org or her Instagram
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