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Does anyone spend a significant amount of time over thinking things?

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Harry Waywell

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I've noticed that with all the possibilities and decisions, we entrepreneurs tend to overthink things too much. Even when not working, we think about work.
 

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GigMistress

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What you describe here isn't what I typically think of as "overthinking." To me, "overthinking" means turning the same question around over and over again, second-guessing your decisions and making up possible obstacles and that sort of thing.

I think any creative mind goes on being creative even when you haven't assigned it a task, and when you're engaged with something it's natural for it to come to mind frequently.

So...which kind of thinking is it? Ideas, unconscious problem solving, etc. or fretting about what you should be doing or might have missed or could go wrong, etc.?
 

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Have a bias towards action and think more about what you’ve done and the results you got, rather than what you’re going to do?
 

MoreVolume

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If you have something solid in front of you, you have no reason to overthink
Sounds like you’re struggling to find the right idea
 

elusive97

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I do, but I also prefer to be doing things, so I usually fight through the overthinking and just do whatever I need to anyway. You got this!
 

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“Overthinking is the art of solving problems you don’t have.”

I think this is for when you’re trying to solve a problem but not the one in front of you.

I’m about to go for my Monday morning jog. I’m pretty sure my brain will be thinking of the week ahead, and the past week. I don’t class that as overthinking though.
 

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Overgeneralization also happens a lot.
 

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Yes, I overthink. Most importantly, I overplan.
It's Monday now but I'm already planning for the infinite number of 'what ifs' that may happen over the next 5 - 30 years of my life. I wish I've the Time stone like Dr. Strange to see into the future and look at all the millions of possibilities that can happen in my life and pre-empt all of those bad ones.

Are you an introvert? Overthinking is an introvert trait.
 

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Johny Wu - Movie Reference: Pain & Gain (2013)

I don't know why god gave us 10 fingers because we only need 3
Then he points to his 3 fingers and says...
"Get a Goal, Get a Plan, Get off Your A** and Go Get It"
 

VincentVega24

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What you describe here isn't what I typically think of as "overthinking." To me, "overthinking" means turning the same question around over and over again, second-guessing your decisions and making up possible obstacles and that sort of thing.
That perception of overthinking applies to mine as well. I sometimes catch myself experiencing the worst outcomes of future events in my head. Best way to go is just keeping things close to reality. Shawn Achor talks about this in one of his books I believe.

Are you an introvert? Overthinking is an introvert trait.
I agree with this a hundred Percent lol.
 

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Smivs

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I've always been an over thinker. Quite often I create a million different scenarios/outcomes/pitfalls in my mind before anything has even happened which ultimately stops me dead in my tracks.


I read a book called 'The 5 Second Rule' and personally when I catch myself overthinking I literally count down in my head '5, 4, 3, 2, 1' then I move.

I've found it really helpful at times when I've felt like my mind is on a loop.
 
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Harry Waywell

Harry Waywell

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Dec 9, 2019
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Warrington UK
What you describe here isn't what I typically think of as "overthinking." To me, "overthinking" means turning the same question around over and over again, second-guessing your decisions and making up possible obstacles and that sort of thing.

I think any creative mind goes on being creative even when you haven't assigned it a task, and when you're engaged with something it's natural for it to come to mind frequently.

So...which kind of thinking is it? Ideas, unconscious problem solving, etc. or fretting about what you should be doing or might have missed or could go wrong, etc.?
Yeah, imagining situations that don't exist yet. Do you experience this often?
 
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Harry Waywell

Harry Waywell

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Dec 9, 2019
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“Overthink is the art of solving problems you don’t have.”

I think this is for when you’re trying to solve a problem but not the one in front of you.

I’m about to go for my Monday morning jog. I’m pretty sure my brain will be thinking of the week ahead, and the past week. I don’t believe that’s overthinking.
So true! Does it affect your professional life?
 
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Harry Waywell

Harry Waywell

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Dec 9, 2019
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Warrington UK
Yes, I overthink. Most importantly, I overplan.
It's Monday now but I'm already planning for the infinite number of 'what ifs' that may happen over the next 5 - 30 years of my life. I wish I've the Time stone like Dr. Strange to see into the future and look at all the millions of possibilities that can happen in my life and pre-empt all of those bad ones.

Are you an introvert? Overthinking is an introvert trait.
Yes! The never ending "what if's". I am indeed. What bothers you the most about overthinking?
 
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Harry Waywell

Harry Waywell

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Dec 9, 2019
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Warrington UK
That perception of overthinking applies to mine as well. I sometimes catch myself experiencing the worst outcomes of future events in my head. Best way to go is just keeping things close to reality. Shawn Achor talks about this in one of his books I believe.


I agree with this a hundred Percent lol.
Yeah I know what you mean. What have you done to try and fix this issue?
 
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OP
Harry Waywell

Harry Waywell

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Dec 9, 2019
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I've always been an over thinker. Quite often I create a million different scenarios/outcomes/pitfalls in my mind before anything has even happened which ultimately stops me dead in my tracks.


I read a book called 'The 5 Second Rule' and personally when I catch myself overthinking I literally count down in my head '5, 4, 3, 2, 1' then I move.

I've found it really helpful at times when I've felt like my mind is on a loop.
I totally understand what you mean. Do you find that it affects your professional life?
 

BizyDad

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There is no right or wrong here. If you are biased towards action, you'll espouse ready, fire, aim. If you are biased to planning, you'll espouse ready, aim, fire.

I know many action oriented successful people, and I know many "think first" successful people. Neither one of these is a determiner of success, in my experience.

If you believe "overthinking" is a problem, then it is. If you believe thinking a lot about all kinds of outcomes, hurdles, scenarios, and solutions is a gift, then it is.

To me, the key is be comfortable with which one you are, and move on knowing this about yourself. Be the best you you can be, don't try to copy someone else's pattern for success.

I think any creative mind goes on being creative even when you haven't assigned it a task, and when you're engaged with something it's natural for it to come to mind frequently.
Great point.

All the time. Every time. Without fail. I 100% overthink every decision.

It’s a curse.
I'm sorry you feel this way. I'd suggest rather than changing, learn to see it as a strength.

“Overthink is the art of solving problems you don’t have.”

I think this is for when you’re trying to solve a problem but not the one in front of you.

I’m about to go for my Monday morning jog. I’m pretty sure my brain will be thinking of the week ahead, and the past week. I don’t believe that’s overthinking.
This is probably true. Or is it? Let's look at it is this way...

Jogging is the art of running a race you don't have.

I like to think of thinking on future problems as training for the brain.

Are you an introvert? Overthinking is an introvert trait.
Then I am the rare extrovert "overthinker".

I've noticed that with all the possibilities and decisions, we entrepreneurs tend to overthink things too much. Even when not working, we think about work.
I will add this. I believe going from an "overthinking planner" to a "act first, ask questions later" type is one of the hardest transitions someone can do.

Good luck on your journey. If you are going to try, I'll remind you to be patient with yourself. It will take a while and you'll find yourself falling into old habits, especially when times get tough. But if you want to do it, you can do it. I'm just saying you don't need to to get where you want to go.
 

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I know how you feel. What bothers you the most about it?
That I can’t start without researching, planning, and thinking about something for days, months, years.
 

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GigMistress

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Yeah, imagining situations that don't exist yet. Do you experience this often?
I don't, but from talking to friends and colleagues, I gather that I'm in the minority. I don't think I have anything helpful to offer, because this seems to be just a weird blessing I have. I hear people talking about how helpful meditation is to "turn off your monkey brain" and that sort of thing, but that's the last thing I'd ever want to do. My monkey brain isn't a worrier. It writes articles, comes up with ideas, and occasionally notices mathematical relationships while I'm doing things that don't require my brain, like washing the dishes or walking the dog and pretty much leaves me alone when I'm doing something I want to focus on.
 

Andy Black

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That I can’t start without researching, planning, and thinking about something for days, months, years.
What if step 1 was to engage the market to get actual data? Would you start then?
 

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GigMistress

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I see. Do you find the over-thinking inhibits your ability to take action sometimes?
I know this question wasn't directed to me, but I'd say that if it's inhibiting something, it's your INCLINATION to take action, not your ability. It may not come naturally, but you can just decide to do it. You're not actually unable.

I know that sounds like semantics and you know you're not physically incapable, but I think it's important to be scrupulous with language like that. If you say "unable" often enough, it will likely start to seem like a fact.
 

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ApparentHorizon

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Meditation and list writing solved this for me after years of struggling.

Meditation

Let your overthinking pass through you. Embrace it instead of fighting it.

You'll only deplete your willpower going against it. Leading to even less action on your part.

List

Helps you focus and return to the center line more easily. Pen and paper, no digital.
 

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