• Colin Huntley

From One Over-Thinker To Another

You're an over-thinker. You wake up, wipe your eyes, manically pick up your phone (be honest, we all do this... it's a sickness), and your mind starts racing. Who will I see today? I don't like how I look. I should probably eat a healthy breakfast. What all do I need to get done today? You're 60 seconds deep into your day, and you are stressed.

I get it. I'm exactly this way. There is no warm up period for me in the morning. Nor is there a wind down at night. If I'm not sleeping, I am Thinking, with a capital T. I've started to realize something about myself that I believe is true of not only myself, but every other OT (over-thinker) out there - The need for control. Yes, control.

An OT is made, not born, in my opinion. An OT's origin story can vary, but it generally looks like this: You get you burned a few too many times, you start to ask questions, never stop asking questions, repeat this process for a few years, and then you're a bona fide OT. So the origin story of an OT generally looks like the death of trust in their life.

You don't trust relationships, religious institutions, family members, supposed friends, or even yourself. You've been lied to by all of them. So it's your responsibility to out-think them. It's the responsible thing to do for yourself. Right?

If you're an OT like myself, the categories of distrust look like this: You have been burned by relationships, so you arm yourself with critical defenses in the form of overthinking to stay safe from them. You make assumptions about girls you meet based off of long drawn out nights of contemplation and calculations about their character. No girl is ever going to understand me. I'm just a little too much. And she's too shallow to get it. So nothing blossoms. You're safe. But are you alive?

Maybe you even lost respect for yourself. You lied to yourself about being a better person in 2019. You actually got worse. You put on weight, you made poor decisions sexually, drank too much, made zero career progress, and got depressed. That's not the 2019 you wanted. You remember how convinced you were that this would be your year. So why did it go this way? Obviously you can't be trusted. So from now on, every idea you have about improvement will be stunted by assumptions of your own character. I won't get in shape in 2020. I never do. No girls are going to like me. They never do. I can't get right with God. I've prayed so much, and he never answers. You've officially given up on yourself. You're safe from all failure, yes. But are you alive?

These are real afflictions we OT's have. Believe me, I'm speaking from personal experience. So what's the antidote to all of this? As far as I can tell, there's only one fix. Identity. All of these issues take root in a shallow sense of identity. No girls are going to like me. They never do. You have branded yourself 'He who is never liked by girls'. That's your identity. No girl is ever going to understand me. I'm just a little too much. You are now 'He who is too much for everybody'.

When you give yourself circumstantial identities like these, based off of experiences rather than transcendent qualities of your soul, you begin to subconsciously spend your life confirming your suspicions about your identity. Why would you try to reinforce and prove the idea that you're unlovable, doomed to be out of shape, or not good enough? It's simple. To be right. If nothing else goes your way, at least you can be right about yourself. There's a sickness in each of us that would rather be right about how terrible we are than be wrong about how beautiful we may be.

So the antidote is this: Let go of control. Stop trying to be right about yourself, or even the world. When you don't need to be right, then you won't need to exhaust yourself daily trying to understand the world. You won't need to over-think. Over-thinking is defense. If you're not afraid of repercussions, if control is not your paramount concern, but rather feeling alive is, you won't need to over-think anymore.

It's okay to simply be. Being doesn't require explanation. I love you. I'm with you.