Our mental capacity gives us room to think and understand the world around us. Many times we use it for good. Other times, we overuse it. Overusing it, just like abusing other things, can create negative feedback as opposed to the positive ones we are chasing after. Take, for instance, someone who’s in constant need to grow, and will always think of ways out to improve themselves. This is not bad on its own, except that they constantly worry about more progress and, over time, may wear themselves thin from the lack of appreciation for how far they’ve come. This hedonistic way of thinking, and many more inhibit our mental prowess. Unfortunately, in our bid to exercise the positive side of our mentality, we end up running them with these inhibitions.
By overthinking, we inhibit our mental prowess. You’ve probably heard it said again and again that overthinking leads us nowhere. Like worry, it brings no tangible results. Yet, it lingers because we believe overthinking is supposed to help us ultimately get the result or answer we are looking for. We believe that by overthinking, we are doing all we can to help a situation. To either decipher or solve it. But in the end, all it does is inhibit us of our mental capacity and capability.
When we overthink, we’re dwelling a lot more than necessary on something that doesn’t need to linger on any longer. We’re forcing things in our minds in our bid to find a solution, whereas it might be something that’d faze out by itself, or needs another strategy to tackle it.
By overthinking, we inhibit our mental prowess. Take it from a recovering over-thinker.
Being critical of oneself isn’t a bad thing, especially when the goal is to push yourself to move further ahead in life. “A little push here and there,” I say. But what happens when it becomes the order of the day? What happens when you constantly pick on yourself for everything? You’re telling your mind to communicate to your brain that you aren’t to be trusted one bit. You’re teaching your brain to watch and question your moves, your exhibitions, your likes and dislikes, and your decision-making skills. Everything. It’s exhausting scoping every inch of your being like that. From you to you. This invariably will affect your mental capabilities and inhibit them. When you want to forge ahead with an important task, your mind queries you a million times about it before it comes to fruition. This can be a trigger to overthinking. It is a recipe for a mental inhibition for both good, best, and bad. To manage this, you need to give your mind some credit at times. Praise it for the good it’s doing. Follow your intuition, trust yourself, and believe in your core of being. That’s how we were meant to think in the first place, as my therapist once asserted. Go with the flow. You are not and cannot be perfect.
The quest for perfection
Again, there’s nothing wrong with wanting everything to be good and to go well. It is our natural state of being where the brain rids the threats and accommodates the safe. However, in real life, we rarely encounter situations where anyone is keeping a score; we’re the only mirrors observing our every step. When you have a scar on your body, nobody notices it until you focus on it. Likewise, the quest for everything to be perfect. You may seek to be on good terms with all your friends, have all your colleagues love you, all your family members support you, and your loved ones call you everything. It’s a bit extreme. And in the bid to achieve this, you’re inhibiting your mental capacity to let go of what’s not in your control. You’re preventing yourself from experiencing the necessary pain and suffering from lack of these things, and most times, you’re in denial as some of these are achievable.
So, it’s best to exercise some open-mindedness in understanding that everything can’t be good and working fine all the time too.
Paying attention to what others think or say
One of the biggest limiting factors of life is listening to what others say. I once read somewhere on Quora that we inculcate the lifestyle people learned by listening to other people. In which case, when you listen to others’ opinions about who you are or what you are not, you’re simply accepting it based on multiple personalities – most of which you don’t know. It is torture.
Hearing others’ opinions should be secondary to what you think and believe. It shouldn’t be what you innately live by. People talk without actually knowing what they are saying.
There’s a strategy I use in evaluating whose opinion I should “remotely” engulf and that is by ascertaining how well they know me, support me or know about the situation they’re opining about. If they don’t pass two out of these three yardsticks, I’m out!
Likewise, you shouldn’t hear an opinion from someone and make it your reality. It is mentally inhibiting. You’re telling your mind it’s incapable of being useful in helping you think, understand, and come up with something of its own. It’s a total blunder because there’s no such mind anywhere. We were all created beautifully with a mind of our own, and that serves as a compass in our behaviour and in navigating life.
No matter how many times people are aware they shouldn’t please others to their detriment, they do it either way.
You might think that by people-pleasing, you’re getting people to be on your side. But the truth is, anyone acquired by false means isn’t going to last too long. People can easily tell when you’re going out of your way for them, in a way that is unhealthy. And rather than appreciate you, they’d flatter you. Rather than accommodate you or include you, they’d evade you.
Chasing after people, or trying so hard to please them is exhausting. It limits your mind by teaching it not to be content by itself. You’re teaching yourself how not to be without others’ approval. And when they finally break your heart ( because for sure they would), you’d be more than mentally inhibited, you’d be shattered. To protect yourself, your mental strength and agility, learn to do things on your own accord. With your permission. Stop pleasing people who ultimately won’t be pleased with you for it.
Look out for yourself and select the kind people who can genuinely love and appreciate you without the extra mentally inhibiting fuss, to surround yourself with.
The need to be around people all the time
The noise from others and certain companionship can ruin your mentality. Before, we’d think that we can only survive by being surrounded by people. Maybe yes to that, when it comes to surviving, but living requires that we spend a lot of alone time. This way we get in touch with our being, we take the time to understand how we operate, and we relax from the hustles and bustles of life to renew our minds on what to take on moving on.
But if we don’t allow that break in transmission, those momentary pauses, we would be missing out on life while “surviving”. And as such strain, our minds further to grasp and deal with all it needs to amid the noise.
I understand that noise is important because it helps you filter the type of people and environment to be better situated in the future, however, constantly bombarding yourself with unselected groups all the time will gravely inhibit you mentally. This explains in cases where you start to internalise others’ way of living, getting jealous, competitive and riled up for something unlikely to your destiny. Thus preventing your mind from exercising its prowess in determining your steps and achieving your life goals.
Our mind is our core of being. It is what perpetuates our living well, and our perception of what it means to live well or not. So when we mar that state (consciously or subconsciously), it has its consequences.
It boils down to being aware of what we fed our minds, who we let in, and how we use our minds. It’s a very powerful aspect of our being that, when neglected or abused, can deteriorate our living capacity. One mental inhibition creates a domino effect of several other inhibitions which may end up catastrophic, looking at the importance of keeping our mind sound.
For example, overthinking encapsulates self-criticism which exemplifies itself through the quest for perfection. The quest for perfection includes listening to what others say, trying to please or be in everyone’s good book, and losing sight of self-companionship. This further oils the hedonistic treadmill of not appreciating oneself and chasing numerous things to enable you to be.
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