Pardon me for the really strong headline of this article, but really… it will destroy you! You won’t notice it until it’s too late, so practice to stop right now. This post works more like a reminder to myself . I am no pro at it i.e. to not overthink everything in life. I myself am still work in progress.
One of the values learnt in Yoga is to learn to live in the present. But this stupid mind of ours keeps traveling back and forth . It will go back 5 hours ago , 5 days , 5 weeks , 5 months and even 5 years ago! [ I’ve just taken a random number 5, it can be any number] It will dissect every small thing, it will over analyse, it will over do everything and will destroy you inside. Especially thinking of the ‘not so good past experiences in life’. People, situations, conversations, incidents and what not. Why would you do that to yourself and in all this overthinking the present moment is lost!
And then the mind also travels to the future. Gets anxious for no reason at all. Over analysis everything again with all the ‘what if’s’ . We tend to get worked up by this anxiousness sometimes turning into anxiety and then ruining the present moment. This precious present moment is lost overthinking about the future that may not even happen the way we over analyse or over think it.
We exercise our physical body, but are literally destroying the mind with all the overthinking! Do we ever live in the moment? Do we ever enjoy the present moment to the fullest? Sometimes, Yes of course!. But Not all the time. So how do we learn to live in the moment ALL THE TIME.
I would like to share a few simple techniques that I learnt and believe to be really useful. Although easier said than done, but will definitely get easy once we practice it and consistency is key! And what harm can be done, if all we’re doing is practicing to be happy by learning to live in the moment :
- Keep your mind busy with productive activities . An empty mind is a devil’s workshop. So do not let your mind sit idle . You will be more drained out if you keep it idle than keeping it busy with productive activities. As long as you’re awake, remember to keep doing something or the other, to keep your mind off unnecessary thoughts. Reading a book, Writing, Listening to music, playing a game that challenges you mentally or just a fun game to keep your mind preoccupied etc.
- Pursue a hobby. Anything you like . Apart from work and our daily responsibilities, it is very important to indulge in recreational activities. Do not let your hobby die. Keep it alive by pursuing it whenever you get the chance. Exercising, Sports, Travel, Singing, Dancing, Painting … Just about anything at all!
- It is good to be alone sometimes. Everybody needs their ‘ME’ time. But otherwise surround yourself with good people and interesting conversations. At work, you will always have your work peeps! Instead of gossiping or talking negatively about a situation or a person, why not talk about fun, happy and positive things. At home, you have your family. Otherwise a good friend who is available to text, call or even better, meet you in person! Always indulge in good conversations with your people. It helps! It will make you smile, even long after the conversation is over and that is a good thing.
- Simple Reminders – Will this thing that I’m overthinking about matter in 5 years ? (again, just using a random number). Yes! Can you do something about it? Yes! then go do something about it instead of overthinking it. But if your answer is No! then stop right now and go pursue any one of the techniques from 1 , 2 and 3 above.
- And lastly realising that all this overthinking is just going to destroy you in the end and no one else. Why would we want to harm ourselves like that. Don’t we love ourselves? Don’t we want us to be happy? It is very important to take care of ourselves both physically and mentally.
Please note: I am not a positively happy person living in the moment all the time as well, but I’m trying really hard to be one. And by writing this post is my way of pursuing techniques 1 , 4 and 5 above ! :