Overthinking is a term used to describe excessive thinking behavior that is triggered by worrying about something, ranging from small problems in everyday life, big problems to traumatic past experiences, which make it difficult for individuals to stop thinking about it. Many mistakenly assumption that overthinking could help someone being careful before finally have a decision. However, by doing so, could affect your health.1

What Are the Characteristics of Overthinking People?

The following are the characteristics of someone who has an overthinking behaviour:2

> Do not focus on problem solution

> Pondering the same thing repeatedly

> Anxiety that makes it difficult to sleep

> Difficulty in making decision

> Blame themselves for making the wrong decision

Impact of Overthinking

Thinking before doing something is normal. However, if we always think too much about something to the point of sacrificing a lot of time, it will certainly have a negative impact, such as:1,4,5

> Disturbing daily activities when someone should be productive with other positive activities instead hampered by excessive thoughts.

> Decreased of performance because the amount of time spent to overthinking hence making work neglected.

> Uncontrollable emotions

> Health issue, such as headaches, fever, chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, high blood pressure

> Difficulties to socialize

How to Overcome Overthinking

After understanding of what overthinking means, the following is how you could overcome it, be alert and take control of yourself:3

> Try to eliminate anxious thoughts. It is important to continually observe and evaluate problems and develop solutions.

> Don't regret for making the wrong decision. However, learn from mistakes so you do not repeat it in the future.

> When the mind starts to fill up, try diverting it by meditating, taking a walk, or doing other activities that you like.

> If you’re having trouble overcoming your habit of overthinking, share your concerns with the closest and most trusted person. Do not hesitate to consult a psychologist if this habit starts to interfere with your daily activities.


  1. Alodokter Staff. Hati-Hati, Dampak Overthinking Bisa Berakibat Fatal. Last reviewed: May 4, 2023. Available at: https://www.alodokter.com/hati-hati-dampak-overthinking-bisa-berakibat-fatal
  2. Halodoc Staff. Overthinking Termasuk Mental Illness? Cek Faktanya. Last reviewed: 4 May 2023. Available at: https://www.halodoc.com/artikel/overthinking-termasuk-mental-illness-cek-faktanya
  3. Winona Katyusha. Tanda-Tanda Overthinking dan Mengapa Anda Perlu Menghindarinya Last reviewed : 27 October 2022. Available at : https://hellosehat.com/mental/stres/overthinking/
  4. Kemenkes staff. Jangan Anggap Remeh Dampak Overthinking. Last reviewed: 03 August 2022. Available at : https://yankes.kemkes.go.id/view_artikel/989/jangan-anggap-remeh-dampak-overthinking
  5. Greatday Staff. Ketahui Pengertian, Ciri-Ciri, dan Dampak Overthinking Bagi Karyawan. Last reviewed: 17 Oktober 2022. Available at: https://greatdayhr.com/id-id/blog/dampak-overthinking-bagi-karyawan/

Image Source: