hello, i’ve been struggling with this for a while now. i think it’s some type of anxiety. i just overthink so much sometimes to the point where i’m unable to talk in certain situations. like i can’t express myself properly, because i’m overthinking THAT moment and what i’m about to say, and how i sound, how i come across ... etc. it’s really bad. idk how to stop it. i have also gotten really self-critical ... and i hate that, i have to pick at every little thing! even though there is nothing wrong with me, but my mind constantly thinks there is! i constantly think i’m broken ... and need to fix something about myself, i obsess over every little ‘wrong’ thing about myself, and often after social interactions over everything i said, HOW i said it, and then i’m kinda mad at myself that i couldn’t really talk so freely and have a nice chill conversation and i blame it on a ‘bad day’ and i have been having these ‘bad days’ a lot lately, somehow i just can’t let it go or let it be, my mind doesn’t work like that, and so yea, on some days! i have these difficulties, talking, because i overthink too much ... any tips? i really need help with this
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First of all, I want you to know that you’re not broken at all and that there is nothing wrong with you. In fact, it is quite common to overthink situations, especially social ones. The pandemic might have played a role in this; after being in isolation/quarantine at home for a while, it has been difficult for a lot of people to adapt to in-person, face-to-face interactions again. So, don’t feel like you are alone in this situation because I guarantee that a lot of people are feeling a similar way!
Regarding some helpful tips, one piece of advice I’d like to give you in order to manage overthinking is to challenge your negative thoughts. Talk back to what your mind is telling you, and use evidence against your negative thoughts! For example, if your mind is telling you that you can’t hold a conversation because you don’t know how, think back to a time when you did hold a similar conversation with somebody. You would then tell yourself that you have done it before, so you can do it again! It’s always okay to excuse yourself and walk away from the conversation for a few minutes to regather your thoughts.
Also, journaling or typing out your thoughts can be really helpful. Getting your thoughts out on paper or on the computer can help you identify the negative ones easier to help you challenge them. You should also try to shift your focus away from how you think others are perceiving you. I guarantee you that other people are not focusing on or even noticing the things that cause you to be super self-critical. Again, challenge the negative thoughts that you are having, and focus on elements such as positive self-talk and thinking about the positive qualities that you have.
Lastly, it can be really helpful to role-play the social situations that make you nervous, either by yourself or with a family member or friend that you trust! Role-playing these situations will ultimately help you be more confident in future social situations and help you work on the things that you overthink about.
Here are some additional resources for further guidance, including Asking Jude's video on social anxiety:
I hope this is all helpful!