This is a love letter to all my kapwa overthinkers.
Overthinking can happen at any given moment during this uneasy time in our lives, but it's especially stressful when those thoughts come flooding in when we're trying to sleep. For me, I distract my brain by having the TV on—usually to a show I know by heart so I technically don't have to pay attention to what's in the background.
This doesn't always work, of course. Sometimes, the negative thoughts win and we feel bombarded by our worries. There are actually a lot of natural ways to fall asleep faster but if those don't work for you, here's a tip I tried last month that's honestly saved me from many sleepless nights.
Add "worry time" to your schedule or daily routine. It may sound silly, but it's super effective! The key is to not schedule it so close to bedtime, but it is essential that you find a pocket of time during the day that's dedicated to *only* this activity. Psychologist Sonia Ancoli-Israel tells NPR, "Turn off your phone, don't let anyone bother you, and just sit and concentrate on all the things that you are worried and anxious about."
I always see some variation of "don't worry" on social media, so allowing myself to worry, even if it's just for 15 minutes a day, gives me a sense of relief. And I really go at it in my head. I let my thoughts run wild and free, lol.
I also realized that I already sort of do this in my professional life. When a task comes up and I don't want to accomplish it right away (granted there's no strict deadline for it), I just tell myself, "Ok, that's tomorrow's problem." And I push it aside until the next day. IT. WORKS.
So the next time you're laying in bed, emotionally ready to get some much deserved rest and an intrusive thought enters your mind, remember that you've set aside 15 minutes the following day for exactly this problem.
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