What Is Overthinking a Symptom of?

Written by: Tanvi Gangavali – MA (Psychology)

Last updated date : October 04, 2022

Table of Contents Article title – Perfectionism
  1. Chapter 1
  2. Chapter 2
  3. Chapter 3
  4. Chapter 4
  5. Chapter 5
  6. Chapter 6
  7. Chapter 7
  8. Chapter 8

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Am I okay? What is overthinking a symptom of? What is the meaning of overthinking? We all have these questions when we are faced with difficult times. Events such as making an important decision in your life are hard for many. We need to think long. Also, we tend to think harder about the expected outcomes. This is also because it is a new thing that we are trying to do. Also, we do not know how it will be. We might see that we tend to think more than needed. We also feel stressed out.  

You will also find that no matter what you do, your mind returns to the same thought over and over again. You will also find that you dwell in the thought all the time. Also, you keep thinking about the outcomes of the decision. This is the meaning of overthinking. It is natural to think over an important decision. But, overthinking can have many effects on your mind and body. It also starts to affect your everyday life. This article will help you to know what is overthinking a symptom of? and also how to deal with it. 

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Chapter 1:
What is the Meaning of Overthinking?

  • Overthinking is also called rumination. This means that you tend to dwell or keep going back to the same thought or event over and over again. This also affects your life. You can either keep thinking about any past event or how the future would be. Either way, it affects your quality of life. It makes you feel tired.
  • The meaning of overthinking is also that you feel stuck. You might find that it is hard to take any action. It might also be difficult to focus on any task. You are constantly in your thoughts. Things can get worse with your thoughts. It also makes you unproductive. For example, you might spend a lot of time thinking about a decision to make. This also affects your sleep. You might also find that you tend to miss a deadline.
  • Overthinking is not bad. For example, if you have a talk to present then you might have a lot of thoughts. This might be for a short time and also helps you to move. You can be stressed about this. But, also it gives you the energy to act. But, it also means that you have a lot of thoughts without any specific reason.
  • Overthinking is also a symptom of trying to control what is beyond your control. You want to plan the entire event perfectly and hence you keep thinking about it over and over again. But, the issue is that you cannot just stop. It keeps moving from one event to another. This is also because you do not want to fail and want to be perfect at all times.
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Chapter 2:
What Is Overthinking A Symptom of?

All by itself, it is not a mental disorder. But overthinking can; lead to many other mental health issues. Overthinking and mental health issues are in a two-way relationship. Certain mental health issues can also lead to overthinking. This also means overthinking can be a symptom of mental health issues. Such as:

  1. Depression- You tend to think in a loop and cannot just stop.
  2. Anxiety Issues- You have high-stress levels and thoughts about an event can increase your anxiety.
  3. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. In this, you might notice having a lot of thoughts about the traumatic event.
  4. Obsessive-compulsive disorder. In this, you have thoughts that you cannot stop which can also lead to many repetitive behaviors.

Overthinking is a symptom of mental health issues. The meaning of overthinking may vary in intensity based on the issue. But, it is hard and stressful. You are constantly on a ride and find it hard to relax. But, help is there.

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Chapter 3:
Overthinking A Symptom of Mental Health Issue- How to deal with it?

You can do some things to deal with overthinking which is a symptom of mental issues. Such as:

  1. Keeping track. This is the best way to deal with overthinking. A little bit of focus on your triggers and patterns can help you deal with them. You can keep a book in which you write the times whenever you start. How you felt and also what you did to stop them. You can also make note of any event or person that made you to start this pattern. This helps to keep track. Also, this helps to reduce it.
  2. You need not believe everything that your mind has to say. Many times our thoughts are not objective. They are based on our own baggage of the past. Hence, you need to challenge your thoughts. This helps to view them without any biases. This can also help you to be more in the present. You can also ask for evidence for any thought that bothers you. By doing this, you will see that most of your thoughts are not useful.
  3. Take help from your friends and family members. You can share with them that you often overthink. You can tell them that if they see you lost in thoughts then can help you by making you focus on other tasks. Also, telling them how you feel about it makes you feel better.
  4. Keep yourself active. Moving your body helps in most mental health issues. The more active you are, the more your brain is healthy. Make it a habit to step out for a walk every day or practice yoga or any form of exercise.
  5. Take expert help. You might also have certain physical symptoms such as headache, stomach aches, and tiredness which need attention from a medical doctor.

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Chapter 4:
The bottom line

Many times we are doing our best but it does not seem to help. You also see that it is affecting many areas of your life. You feel helpless and stressed out. It is an endless loop of thoughts and worries. Overthinking can also be a symptom of many mental health issues. Help is available. Working on your thoughts, seeking expert help, and being active can help you to deal with them. It is hard to be in the loop but with the right kind of help you can do better. It is never too late. If you are reading this article and if you find that you are overthinking then please do seek help. Our epsych online website is also a platform for seeking help. There are many courses on mental health that can help you. One such course is Low Self-esteem. This course will help you to work on well-being.
Reviews 4.1

Learn evidence-based scientific ways to overcoming perfectionism.

87 Lessons

6 hours

  • Educational Content
  • Quizzes
  • Self-reflection material
  • Suggestions & feedback
  • Worksheet, tips & tools to use

€9.00 €12.00

25% discount