A Quick Solve for Over-Thinking

We threw Bodie a belated first birthday at home. As far as first birthdays go, it was low stress and fun, especially for him, which could’ve gone either way with 40 grown ups in his space and 10 kids sharing his toys.   

Yet my hamster wheel mind, as my husband calls it, has spent the last two weeks trying to fend off this weird regret that keeps popping up. When I got the pictures back from my photographer friend, there was my very happy son in ill fitting pants and a cheap cotton top that looked like he was competing for a wet tee shirt contest thanks to his drool situation.  Every other child in that room looked like they jumped out of a Jacadi catalog and my birthday boy looks like an ad for generic wipes.

Since then, I serendipitously came across this post on tackling over-thinking,  so I figured the birthday situation could be my low stakes mental experiment.  Emily, the author of the post and the over-thinking-brain behind the popular brand Cupcakes & Cashmere, suggested asking yourself the very simple question, “Is this something you’ll remember in a year?”

As soon as I asked myself if this was really something I’d be holding on to at Bodie’s second birthday, I had to laugh at the notion that my failure to pick out an outfit in advance of Bodie’s first birthday warranted any stress.  As soon as I laughed, I let it go.

I, like most of you, have gotten stuck on more significant things, like unintentionally hurting someone’s feelings or someone unintentionally hurting my feelings, and these emotions have a way of lodging themselves in that hamster wheel and turning over and over.    I think the mental checkpoint Emily suggested may not always work in fully letting something go, but it certainly might help to hold things more lightly.  Either way, whether we let go or loosen our grip a bit on negative thoughts, I love the idea that it makes some time and space for the important things.   

Do you find yourself dwelling on things?  How do you stop over thinking?