We always read about all the good habits of all the successful people. What we should do and how we should do it in order to become what we strive for, to be our best selves to be happy and fulfilled. This post, however, isn’t about waking up early, meditating, eating ketogenic diet.
It is about overthinking. Or even catastrophising.
Being always told I was all clever I considered it helpful and somewhat an educated approach to look at a given problem from all angles. But this is exactly where it all started. Sing all angles I see EVERYTHING that could possibly happen. Every possible outcome, including most absurd catastrophic scenarios. And then I can’t stop thinking about it. Even when I think I have covered all the bases and I’m all safe to make that decision my brain goes ‘but what if THIS happens?!’ and it starts all over again.
Sometimes I think it is because I watched too many (all!) Final Destination films. The scenarios I create in my head are pretty much what happens in these movies. I’ll burn to death in a sun bed, the front wheel of my bike is bound to come off any day and I’ll die under a truck, a rat is going to bite me and I’ll contract some horrible disease where all my limbs rot away. You name it, I probably thought of it. If I’m not scared I am worried – to tell my flatmates I want to move out for example. Or to tell someone when they piss me off (because I may hurt them).
This overthinking has caused me to back out of a lot of opportunities. Instead of dealing with the issue and making whatever sacrifices I think I would have to make, I avoid the problem altogether. I can’t decide what would be the worst or best option, so I make no decision at all. I postpone until it’s too late so I don’t have to deal with the consequences of having made that decision. Or I make decisions very spontaneously, without thinking about it at all. Funny enough, small everyday decisions I ponder for years – took me 27 years to book my first tattoo appointment and I’m scared of the hairdresser so I just don’t go. On the other hand, things that others consider for months and consult with every specialist and book known to man I make in a blink of an eye. To quit uni in Poland and move to Scotland, to leave London and move to Dresden – these were pretty much made on the spot. What’s even funnier I don’t regret anything. So why all the worrying?
Once my brain gets going, my voice stops. I don’t want to talk about what I am thinking because I will sound like a raving lunatic. The merry go round has started and there will be no stopping or slowing down. So I stay quiet and let my brain go on whatever joyride it fancies. In those periods I pretty much don’t leave the house. And if I speak to you, I’m going to tell you how it’s all gonna end badly.
And it really has been affecting my moods. The slightest provocation can send me into a tirade. And I don’t mean like something actually happening or someone telling me something. It’s often quite the opposite. Lack of action or communication, the weather, the washing machine running for too long, the delayed bus, the sprained ankle, the not fully charged power bank.
All this noise sometimes just feels like a buzzing and no coherent thought is actually occurring because my thoughts have become so convoluted it just sounds like the noise in a cafeteria where you can’t actually make a conversation out, but the noise of talking and chattering is there.
As you can imagine this can be rather frustrating. All of this is frustrating. The thoughts, the lack of coherent thoughts, the buzzing. I know in my logical mind that all of this is bullshit and most likely nothing will happen and we will all live happily ever after and maybe even I will find passion and love one day, but knowing doesn’t stop the thinking. And the thinking facilitates the feeling. And then everything buzzes all at once and all I want to do is cry. Which I do sometimes.
So here’s to trying to keep the noise down by being a little more sensitive to listening to my own needs, forgiving myself a little more and trying to stop being perfect, and hopefully having the ability to communicate with others.
What is something you struggle with?