By Syed Maafid
A human being is gifted with the power of thinking that keeps him or her involved in different activities. Thinking is a process of considering or reasoning. The pithy quote ‘Health is not just about what you are eating, it is all about what you are thinking and saying’ captures the essence of thinking. However, while thinking is the essence of being human, there are always the harmful effects of overdoing. Over thinking constitutes one example of this.
According to the American Psychological Association, ‘over thinking involves ‘repetitive, prolonged, and recurrent thought about one’s self, one’s concerns and one’s experiences’. And, when we over think it has negative impacts on our health and on our lives. Overthinking leads to the problems that are not actually there. I remember a quote of my teacher , who would say, ‘ Don’t trouble the trouble until the trouble troubles you, if you trouble the trouble the trouble will double trouble you’. Overthinking ruins the situation and leads to the negative thoughts. Being negative is the beginning of disaster, as it overcomes a person in such a manner that there is hardly a way out.
The impending doom created in the mind of the over thinker will lead to GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder). The consequences and signs of this are: helplessness, lack of confidence, frustration, depression, irritability, guilt, trauma among other things. The question is; why we Over-think?
We over-think because we want to achieve as soon as possible. We do not want to wait for the time they are destined to happen. The habit of over-thinking or over analyzing the things not only hampers us emotionally and mentally but physically as well. This is the reason of being impatient and insomniac. Over-thinking throws a person into a dark tunnel from which it is almost impossible for him/her to come out. The person who overthinks often comes up with the questions like: why did it happen to me? Why wasn’t I aware about the situation? Why did I take such and such decision? What I have done right or wrong?
In short an over-thinking person is flooded with such ideas or reasons that are beyond anyone’s control. Previously, it was thought that people who thoroughly think over problems can make better decisions and stay happy. However , recent studies have found that over thinking impairs decision making ability, ruins moods, kills good vibes, leads to negativity and makes a person unhappy. Over thinkers lose the ability to look at the opportunities that they can get and thus end up as pessimists who see nothing but problems in their lives. However, at times, over-thinking is not bad for us but how we choose to act on those thoughts that is what matters the most.
It is said that dragging too much can either break a thing or can make things worse. The same applies with the process of thinking. When we over think, we are dragging events which leads to nowhere. Over thinking not only complicates life but it steals the life itself at times, by making us more vulnerable over time. In the final analysis, thinking can never replace action; hence, no matter how much you worry or think over something, nothing is really going to change.
Better is to act than over-think. Stanley Kubrick’s quote , ‘It’s crazy how you can get yourself in a mess sometimes and not even be able to think about it with any sense and yet not be able to think about anything else’, aptly and pithily sums up and captures the essence of the argument.
—The author can be reached at: email@example.com