Hello, fellow caffeine addicts,
It’s been a while, I know… The pangs of guilt have been gnawing at my soul since I wrote last, which was about my first art show…three months ago! Holy smokes.
Today's post is inspired by the recent release of my Don’t Overthink It pins. I wanted share with you the two (of the many) things I overthink about and why this pin is such an important reminder for me. I hope it helps you, too.
It's not about dismissing whatever bothers you or telling yourself to just stop overanalyzing. It's about understanding exactly what kind of thoughts get you reeling in a negative direction. I should have said this, I should have done that. Constantly mulling over project details or trying to solve what is beyond our control. It's about identifying those problems and figuring out healthy solutions and forming positive habits.
It helped to sit with myself and write things down. To dig deeper into my own psychology, my feelings, my fears, my doubts. I know we are not our thoughts—simply thinking of robbing a bank doesn’t make us thieves—but it is important that we become aware of the thoughts that rob us from experiencing a happier life. An IMPORTANT reminder: We have the power and freedom to feed the thoughts that either nurture or hinder our own growth.
Do you mull over details of projects for endless hours…before you’ve even started. Overthinking how it could potentially fail and how you might not be able to overcome those obstacles? I’ve been there. I've been stuck in the planning stages way too often for way too long convinced I still need more hours of research. I make lists, yet I can't move forward. Sound familiar? This is called analysis paralysis, which means we overthink a situation so much that action is never taken, in effect paralyzing the outcome.
The solution? Don’t overthink it, just do. Start drawing. Take the next step. Enjoy the process. And the fear of not knowing and the fear of failure will dissipate. You can’t revise or refine something you’ve never started. And if you get stuck along the way, go back and do a little more research, but at least you’d have already started. And that’s the hardest part! Don't put so much pressure on yourself. Let’s give ourselves the freedom to learn as we go. After all, creativity begets creativity.
That's not in my control
What about the weather? We can't stop a storm, but we can prepare for it. We have no control over someone else’s feelings and behaviors just like they don’t have control over ours, but we do have 100% control and have full responsibility of our reactions. Although it could get frustrating, we have to recognize that all we can control is our efforts and our attitudes. That’s powerful if you really think about it. When we channel our limited energy into the things we do have control over, things we are most passionate about, things essential to our happiness—our goals, our aspirations—we progress. W e are more fulfilled, we become more productive, we ultimately feel happier.
Your friend’s running an hour late? That’s alright. That’s an hour of sketching ideas (always carry your sketchbook). Your boyfriend doesn’t like your favorite playlist? That’s alright. Find music you two can enjoy together. If you see a problem, find a solution. If it's out of your control or if you can’t do something about it, change your attitude or let it go. Whatever the issue is, it doesn't help to obsess and overthink what you can't fix, change the channel and pour energy into what inspires you instead. Rather than wasting our time ruminating, complaining, condemning or comparing… Let’s cultivate a positive mindset and be productive in the way we react.
It may not be easy, but it really is that simple:
Don’t overthink and overplan your projects, just start. You'll find solutions along the way.
Don’t overthink what you can’t control. Instead, be productive in your reaction. If you can't fix it, channel your energy on the things that matter most to you.
Honestly, any outcome is far better than the price we pay when perpetually brewing in fear, doubt, and inaction. To put things into perspective... We live only one life. Just one. Our time is limited. Our energy is limited. We need not give permission to thoughts that take away from our happiness. We must consciously remind ourselves to live with intent. Keep a positive mindset and Don’t Overthink It.
What do you do when you find yourself overthinking? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Smile more often and love yourself always,
P.S. The art show was a success, by the way. I was completely overwhelmed with gratitude that my family and friends came to support; that I had the opportunity to meet other creatives; and that my work resonated with so many people. I have a post in the works about my first show experience, my prep list, what to expect, and tips on how to make sales.