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Psychologists Explain How To Stop Overthinking Everything

心理学家解释如何停止过度思考



Overthinking can lead to serious emotional distress and increase your risk of mental health problems

过度思考会导致严重的情绪困扰,并增加你罹患心理健康问题的风险

Thinking about something in endless circles — is exhausting.

在无穷无尽的循环中思考某件事ーー令人筋疲力尽。

While everyone overthinks a few things once in a while, chronic over-thinkers spend most of their waking time ruminating, which puts pressure on themselves. They then mistake that pressure to be stress.

虽然每个人都会时不时地多想一些事情,但长期过度思考的人大部分醒着的时间都在沉思,这给他们自己带来了压力,然后他们把这种压力误认为是应激。



Overthinking can take many forms: endlessly deliberating when making a decision (and then questioning the decision), attempting to read minds, trying to predict the future, reading into the smallest of details, etc.

过度思考可以表现为多种形式:
做决定时无休止的深入思考( 然后质疑决定 ) ,试图读心,试图预测未来,分解最细小的细节,等等。

People who overthink consistently run commentaries in their heads, criticising and picking apart what they said and did yesterday, terrified that they look bad — and fretting about a terrible future that might await them

那些想太多的人总是在脑子里翻来覆去的发表评论,挑剔和批评他们昨天说的和做的,他们害怕自己看起来很糟糕—— 并且担心一个可怕的未来可能会等着他们。

‘What ifs’ and ‘shoulds’ dominate their thinking, as if an invisible jury is sitting in judgement on their lives. And they also agonise over what to post online because they are deeply concerned about how other people will interpret their posts and upxes.

“ 假如”和“应该”主宰了他们的思维,仿佛一个看不见的陪审团正坐在审判他们的生活。
此外,他们还为在网上发布什么内容而苦恼,因为他们非常担心其他人会如何解读他们的帖子和更新。

They don’t sleep well because ruminating and worrying keep them awake at night. “Ruminators repetitively go over events, asking big questions: Why did that happen? What does it mean?” adds Susan Nolen-Hoeksema, the chair of the department of psychology at Yale University and the author of Women Who Think Too Much: How to Break Free of Overthinking and Reclaim Your Life. “But they never find any answers.”

他们睡眠不好是因为反复思考和担忧让他们夜不能寐。
“反刍者反复回顾事件,提出‘重大’问题:为什么会发生这种情况? 这意味着什么? ”
耶鲁大学心理学系主任、《 想得太多的女人:如何摆脱过度思考和重新开始你的生活》一书的作者苏珊 · 诺伦-胡克塞玛补充道“ 但他们从未找到任何答案。”



Many people overthink because they are scared of the future, and what could potentially go wrong. “Because we feel vulnerable about the future, we keep trying to solve problems in our head,” says David Carbonell, a clinical psychologist and author of “The Worry Trick: How Your Brain Tricks You into Expecting the Worst and What You Can Do About It.”

许多人过度思考是因为他们害怕未来,害怕可能出现的问题。
临床心理学家、《烦恼的把戏 : 你的大脑如何欺骗你去做最坏的打算以及你能做些什么》一书的作者大卫·卡本威尔说,“因为我们对未来感到脆弱,所以我们一直试图在头脑中解决问题。”

Extreme overthinking can easily sap your sense of control over your life. It robs us of active participation in everything around us.

极端的过度思考很容易削弱你对生活的控制感,它剥夺了我们对周围一切事物的积极参与。

“Chronic worriers show an increased incidence of coronary problems and suppressed immune functioning. Dwelling on the past or the future also takes us away from the present, rendering us unable to complete the work currently on our plates. If you ask ruminators how they are feeling, none will say “happy.” Most feel miserable,” says Nicholas Petrie, a senior faculty member at the Center for Creative Leadership.

“ 慢性焦虑症表明冠状动脉问题和免疫功能受抑制的发生率增加,沉湎于过去或未来也会让我们远离现在,使我们无法完成目前摆在我们面前的工作,如果你问反刍者他们感觉如何,没有人会说“高兴”, 大多数人感觉很痛苦”创造性领导力中心高级教员尼古拉斯皮特里表示。

Overthinking can trap the brain in a worry cycle. When ruminating become as natural as breathing, you need to quickly deal with it and find a solution to it.

过度思考会使大脑陷入担忧的循环。
当反刍变得像呼吸一样自然时,你需要迅速处理它并找到解决办法。

“When an unpleasant event puts us in a despondent mood, it’s easier to recall other times when we’ve felt terrible. That can set the stage for a ruminator to work herself into a downward spiral,” writes Amy Maclin of Real Simple.

艾米· 麦克林在《简单生活》一书中写道:“当一件不愉快的事情让我们陷入沮丧的情绪时,我们更容易回忆起其他感觉糟糕的时候,这可能会为反刍者自己进入一个恶性循环创造条件。”

How to defeat this pattern of thinking and win your life back

如何战胜这种思维模式,赢回你的生活

Chronic worrying is not permanent. It’s a mental habit that can be broken. You can train your brain to look at life from a different perspective.

长期的担忧并不是永久的,这是一种可以被打破的精神习惯,你可以训练你的大脑从不同的角度看待生活。



“You can cultivate a little psychological distance by generating other interpretations of the situation, which makes your negative thoughts less believable,” says Bruce Hubbard, the director of the Cognitive Health Group and an adjunct assistant professor of psychology and education at Columbia University. This is called cognitive restructuring.

哥伦比亚大学心理学和教育学兼职助理教授、认知健康组主任布鲁斯 · 哈伯德说: “你可以通过对事物产生其他解释来培养一点心理距离,这会让你的消极想法变得不可信。” 这就是所谓的认知重组。

Ask yourself — What’s the probability that what I’m scared of will actually happen? If the probability is low, what are some more likely outcomes?

问问你自己ーー我害怕的事情实际发生的可能性有多大?
如果可能性很低,那么更有可能的结果是什么呢?

If it’s a problem you keep ruminating about, rephrase the issue to reflect the positive outcome you’re looking for,” suggests Nolen-Hoeksema.
“Instead of “I’m stuck in my career,” tell yourself or better still write, “I want a job where I feel more engaged.” Then make a plan to expand your skills, network, and look for opportunities for a better career.

诺伦 · 何塞马建议:“如果这是一个你一直在反复思考的问题,那么重新表述这个问题,以反映出你正在寻找的积极结果,” “与其说‘我被工作困住了’ ,不如告诉自己,或者最好是这样:‘我想要一份让我感觉更投入的工作。”然后制定一个计划来扩展你的技能,人际关系,并寻找更好的职业机会。

Find a constructive way of processing any worries or negative thoughts, says Honey. “Write your thoughts down in a journal every night before bed or first thing in the morning — they don’t have to be in any order. Do a ‘brain dump’ of everything on your mind onto the page. Sometimes that can afford a sense of relief, ” recommends Honey Langcaster-James, a psychologist.

找到一个有建设性的方法来处理任何的担忧或消极的想法, “每天晚上睡觉前或早上的第一件事就是把你的想法写在日记里ーー它们不需要按任何顺序排列,把你脑子里所有的东西都“从大脑转储”到纸上, 有时候,这可以让人感到轻松。”这是心理学家汉妮詹姆斯的建议。



Recognise your brain is in overdrive or ruminating mode, and then try to snap out of it immediately. Or better still, distract yourself and redirect your attention to something else that requires focus.

认识到你的大脑处于超负荷运转或沉思模式,然后尝试立即摆脱它。
或者更好的做法是,分散自己的注意力,把注意力转移到其他需要集中注意力的事情上。

“If you need to interrupt and replace hundreds of times a day, it will stop fast, probably within a day,” says Dr Margaret Weherenberg, a psychologist and author of The 10 Best-Ever Anxiety Management Techniques. “Even if the switch is simply to return attention to the task at hand, it should be a decision to change ruminative thoughts.”

心理学家、《十大最佳焦虑管理技巧》一书的作者玛格丽特韦赫伦伯格博士表示: “如果你每天打断并替换数百次,这种情况很快就会停止, 即使这种转变仅仅是为了将注意力回到手头的任务上,也应该是一个改变沉思思维的决定。”

It takes practice, but with time, you will be able to easily recognise when you are worrying unnecessarily, and choose instead, to do something in real life rather than spending a lot of time in your head.

这需要练习,但是随着时间的推移,你会很容易意识到你在不必要地担忧,并选择在现实生活中做一些事情,而不是花大量的时间在你的头脑中。

For example, convert, “I can’t believe this happened” to “What can I do to prevent it from happening again?” or convert “I don’t have good friends!” to “What steps could I take to deepen the friendships I have and find new ones?” recommends Ryan Howes, PhD.

例如,将“真不敢相信发生了这样的事 ”转换为“我能做些什么来防止它再次发生? ”
或者将“我没有好朋友! ” 转变为“ 我可以采取哪些步骤来加深我的友谊,并找到新的友谊? ” 瑞安 · 豪斯博士建议。

Don’t get lost in thoughts about what you could have, would have, and should have done differently. Mental stress can seriously impact your quality of life.

不要迷失在你本可以、本应该这类不同的想法中,精神压力会严重影响你的生活质量。

An overactive mind can make life miserable. Learning how to stop spending time in your head is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself.

过于活跃的头脑会使生活痛苦,学习如何停止在你的头脑中花费时间是你能给自己的最好的礼物之一。

Like all habits, changing your destructive thought patterns can be a challenge, but it’s not impossible. With practice, you can train your brain to perceive things differently and reduce the stress of overthinking.

像所有的习惯一样,改变你破坏性的思维模式可能是一个挑战,但并非不可能。
通过练习,你可以训练你的大脑以不同的方式感知事物,减少过度思考的压力。

If overthinking is ruining your life, and if you think you may be spiralling into depression because of your thoughts, it pays to get professional help.

如果过度思考正在毁掉你的生活,如果你认为你可能会因为自己的思想而陷入抑郁,那么寻求专业帮助是值得的。