How to Calm an Overactive Mind in 3 Slow Breaths – Darice Cairns
Darice Cairns
The Art of Finding Truth, One Man's Journey Through Love, Life, Grief and Joy

Do you think too much, have an overactive mind, suffer from headaches, and try to solve your problems using brainpower?

Calming an overactive mind can seem impossible until you step back and reassess what is really going on.

I ‘was’ an overthinker. I would think and rethink, solve and strategize, then analyze and create solutions to many of my problems.

When things didn’t go the way I planned, I would rethink a new strategy and be confident that it would solve my problems. Sometimes this worked.

I started overthinking. I started to stress when things didn’t work out the way I thought they should. When I encountered ‘failures’ in my thinking process, I lost confidence in thinking clearly. Before long, I started to doubt myself, which propelled me into a whole new level of overthinking.

All this thinking grew into a fictitious monster, that disconnected me from the real me.

The problem was that I was overthinking and driving myself further away from the people I loved, the things I connected to, the things that made me uniquely me.

It took me a long time to figure out that thinking my way through life was causing me to lose touch with myself, the people in my life and the world around me.

If you’re an overthinker like I was – and can’t seem to stop the cycle – I have some great strategies that will help you find peace of calm and rein in that overactive brain of yours.

How to Stop Thinking too Much and calm an Active Mind!

1. Your mind is not actually that intelligent

The first step to calm an overactive mind is to stop giving it so much attention and power.

Ok, so here is the thing, your brain is a highly organized organ and is capable of incredible things. It is, therefore, great at following orders, performing tasks, calculating risks, and remembering information.

Think of it as you own personal computing system. It is hard wired to be a huge store of information.

It will do anything you tell it, and if you do nothing, it will throw loads of data at you in the form of thoughts and memories. Just because certain thoughts and memories cross your mind doesn’t mean that you should act on them.

Your brain uploads, downloads and recycles data. Not all of that data is useful or even needed.

Your brain needs a higher power to guide it, to discern what is important and what is not important.

You are not the thoughts you think.

You are the master of you, not your mind.

A business man is standing infront of a black board thinking about a big decision.
Turn chaos into calm.

2. YOU must be the master of your mind

The second step to calm an overactive mind is to take control of your thoughts. When you do, you take control of your brain.

When you feel emotional, your brain will throw all kinds of thoughts your way to help remedy the situation. Believing in every thought that comes your way will cause you more stress.

Take control and do not engage in thoughts that are not uplifting. In fact, the best thing to do when you are stressed, and your mind goes into overdrive is to say to yourself, “Nothing I am thinking right now is true!”

Wait until you are calm, wait until tomorrow, put time and space between you and what is going on in the moment.

Never let your mind take over.

Your mind is a great computer but not a leader.

It is a great doer but not a creator.

A man stands with big waves behind him and calm water in front of himself.
Be the master of your mind. Photo by Elijah Hiett on Unsplash

3. Practice taking control of your mind

This is done by breathing in through your nose slowly for a count of 4 – hold it for 4 – exhale through your mouth for 4.

Do this several times until you feel physically calmer. You should feel calm within 4 breaths. Breathing methodically like this forces your brain to slow down, allows you to take charge, and it moves your body and brain into a more coherent state.

Reaching a coherent state is the goal here. Forcing yourself to breathe slowly forces your body to remain calm even when things around you are out of control.

In times of chaos, it is tempting to take control of the situation and other people to bring calm into our lives, but that never brings calm and only makes matters worse. Don’t waste your energy by giving away your power to something that you can never change.

You can’t control anything outside of yourself BUT you can control how you will control yourself.

4. Long Term Calm

The final step to calm an overactive mind is to keep practicing number 3 for longer periods of time.

Breath in and out slowly for longer periods of time and get in a routine of doing this every day. Consciously slowing down your breathing will calm your body, mind, and emotions almost instantly.

Next, take a step further and sit quietly once or twice a day for a few minutes and take control of your breathing. The more you do this, the more you take control of your life and your mind.

Let your thoughts come in and go out and remember…

You are not your thoughts, you are much more that that!

Make this a daily practice, and before you know, you will yearn for the quiet calm that this easy practice brings into your life. This is – actually – meditating, sitting quietly with yourself and breathing deeply.

A colourful picture of a person sitting in meditation with white light rays radiating around them from their body.
What comes from total control of your mind is often referred to a ‘going through the eye of the needle’, to the other side of consciousness.

Beyond Calm

Once you have tapped into the benefits of breathing deeply for longer periods of time every day, you will naturally move into a meditative practice. If you keep this up and guard the time with yourself pragmatically and consciously you WILL create a new reality for yourself.

If you are interested in learning more about how to become a new you, read “The Ultimate Guide on how to reprogram your life for success.

Cover Photo, Image by ElisaRiva from Pixabay

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