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Wellness > Mental Health


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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Krea chapter.

I distinctly remember my first day of twelfth grade, for it was nothing short of a disaster. I was sprinting up the stairs, ten minutes late to class. My back was dripping with sweat and my heart was galloping with fear. Albeit huffing and puffing, I managed to get to class at last and was greeted by my new class teacher who said with a condescending smirk, “Late on the first day? Good going!”. This small sentence had kicked my brain into overdrive and converted me into a confounding mess of anxiety and stress. Days passed since that incident, yet my thoughts were consumed with recollections of that day.

Do these feelings sound familiar? It’s because a vast majority of us tend to feel this way either chronically or occasionally. This is the textbook definition of overthinking- a condition that used to disrupt my day-to-day life. However, over the past year, I have found ways to manage my overthinking tendencies. Below is a comprehensive list of ways in which I think, you too, can manage your thoughts and let go of your worrying:

Start penning down your thoughts: It may sound stupid, and you may feel silly the first time you do it, but consider keeping, what I call, a brain dump. It is a small notebook made to fit all the thoughts that keep revisiting your mind. It doesn’t have to be pretty; it doesn’t have to be perfect; it’s simply a way to externalize your internal thoughts so that your overactive brain finally has an outlet.

Employ positive affirmations: Our mind tends to overthink when it feels that our actions are not up to par. This act leads to self-deprecating thoughts, and the more we dwell on these thoughts, the more we overthink.  A solution to this is to look at yourself in the mirror and vocalize out loud positive affirmations. Tell yourself “I am strong”, “I am worthy”, “I am capable”, and most importantly “I am enough”.

Sweat it out: Exercise is directly linked with Endorphins- our body’s feel-good hormones. If you find yourself in a loop of repeatedly thinking the same thoughts, grab your workout gear and get ready to release some endorphins! A simple twenty-minute cardio workout would be sufficient to leave you in a happy mood and help you focus on other, more important things at hand.

Hold the reins to your emotions: Emotions dictate how you feel about yourself and ultimately dictate your thinking patterns. If you acknowledge your emotions, you can take a step towards stopping the overthinking. Tell yourself that you are the master of your mind and your emotions are under your control. No one but you can hold the power to decide how you feel, you control the narrative. If you control your emotions, you can mitigate your overthinking.

Meditate/ pray: If you are someone in touch with your religious beliefs, consider praying when you find yourself being subsumed by your thoughts. Prayers can serve as a reminder that you always have a higher power looking out for you even when it feels like nothing is going your way, when you feel like everything is wrong. If you are a nonbeliever or simply more in touch with your spiritual side, try meditation. The fundamental principle that it preaches is learning to control your thoughts and calm your mind- two important prerequisites to stop overthinking.

I know that following these tips is much easier said than done, but implementing them can surely help direct you to a better life. A life filled with a lot more instances of living in the moment, rather than one where you are stuck in the past. If you still find yourself stuck in a ruminating rut, consider getting some professional help by visiting a licensed psychologist who can help you navigate your thoughts effectively and safely. 

Hi, I'm Simraan! I love hugs, unironically using genZ lingo, clicking pictures of pretty skies, consuming hazardous amounts of coffee, the smell that follows rain, warm chocolate chip cookies (especially from Theobroma) and receiving pretty bouquets. For a serotonin boost to get through busy days I listen to music, paint, go pet the resident campus cat coco, analyze biology research papers or read a trashy romance novel. My imagination always runs wild, and thus I express my never-ending ideas through my written work. I'm super excited to share my creativity with all of you on HerCampus <3