I have always been very introspective. I spend a lot of time trying to figure myself out. What makes me ‘tick’. What makes me do the things I do. Why do I eat so much? Why do I hate exercise? Why can’t I drink just one glass of wine? Why did I fail as an Air Traffic Controller? Why didn’t my marriage work? How do I teach my son to believe in himself? How do I help my son not make the mistakes I have made? So many questions go through my mind – it’s often hard to move forward when I am trying to figure out the “how and why” of it all. Being sober has only enhanced this side of me. I am no longer ‘numb’ at night; blocking life out, not thinking about anything except my next drink. Now that I am sober (210 days in fact!), I sit with my feelings more, like it or not, I constantly wonder….and think….and wonder…
Living the sober life has been wonderful, strange and tough – and everything in between. I definitely have a lot of time to think…think about all the things I have always questioned and more. Problem is, I still don’t have any answers. It can be overwhelming. I get inside my head and overanalyze everything. In my sober club, we talk about ‘being present’ and living in the moment. I assume its for this reason – we all have a lot of stuff in our heads and we will spend hours trying to figure it out if we don’t try to stay in the current moment. I have a feeling this is a side affect of being sober. In fact, I bet it is!
So, I googled it. And I was right. One article I read on a UK recovery site said, “overthinking is becoming so lost in your own internal debates that it prevents you from taking the positive action that would improve your life”. It suggests that a sign of strong sobriety is being able to move on and be less self absorbed and less wrapped up in your own thoughts. Overthinking can cause procrastination because we tend to spend so much time thinking and analyzing, we never take action.
I realize I need to get out of my own head!
New Goals! I can’t say I won’t be ‘overthinking’ and getting lost in the many questions and worries that I seem to carry with me. BUT, I am going to make an ‘action list’ that I can follow when the thoughts start to take over. My sober club watched a video related to this topic and it suggests doing a quick “5-4-3-2-1” and moving on. My plan is to get the thoughts out of my head any way necessary before they drag me down the rabbit hole. I know not all of my deep thoughts are anxiety causing topics that will stop me from functioning. But I need to quickly identify which ones can drag me down and shake them off.
Writing in my journal, playing cards with my son, baking or cooking, using my Cubii, reading a book, calling my mom, texting a friend, or just physically shaking my head – I will find some way to get out of my head. I will continue to learn from the thoughts without letting them slow me down.
I know deep thinking and over-analyzing is part of who I am. But I also know I spend to much time wrapped up in thinking and not enough time ‘doing’. I will make the changes I need to make, ‘with gratitude and intention’, to stay in the moment. Because honestly, I have no idea how many more moments I have, and I want to live every single one of them.
In peace, Ms. K