Writers are overthinkers by nature, I think. We spend our days pondering life and the world and our place in it. We pay attention to every detail, every emotion and every action that comes together in front of us. Truth be told, we can get a little obsessed thinking about most areas of our lives.
I once convinced myself that a pimple on my arm was MRSA. By the end of the night, I’d thoroughly Googled and WebMD’d my way to a nervous wreck. I’d checked my life insurance policies, notified someone where to find me and resigned myself to dying. Turns out it was just a pimple. But that’s how I roll.
And I know I’m not the only one.
Why is it that once we enter into a relationship with someone, many of us do the same? Over-analyzing every move that our significant others make. It’s exhausting. And unrealistic. And has the ability to ruin something really beautiful.
Are you doing the same?
In reality, over-analyzing is just another word for worrying. And as Christians, we are encouraged not to do this.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:34)
Why? Because God knows how it can stunt our growth. How it can keep us from experiencing what He has planned for us. How it can hold us back from living our lives to the fullest.
We don’t need to seek out all of the things that can possibly go wrong in hopes of avoiding them. Things go wrong. We’re human. And preparing for a million things that won’t actually happen is kind of like preparing for the zombie apocalypse. The world isn’t gonna end that way (see the book of Revelation).
What over-analyzing (worry) will do is distract us from the gifts God has placed in our lives. And distraction is a tool of the enemy that does nothing more than makes us ineffective. Not only in our lives, but in the lives He has placed around us as well. It does nothing more than introduce negativity into whatever situation we are facing.
So what can you do when you find yourself overthinking your relationship?
Get to know yourself better. Look for clues into your past that may make you more likely to question certain things. If you have a fear of some part of your relationship, consider why. Are there valid issues in your past that make you prone to worry in order to avoid the same mistakes again? Or are you looking at what has happened in other’s lives and projecting that onto your own situation? Explore your own past to locate problem areas that you need to be aware of. Then you’ll know if it’s a real problem or just worry.
Snap out of it. Start paying attention to these feelings so you can realize when your thoughts are taking over an otherwise normal situation. Do you feel anxious, upset or depressed for no reason at all? Is your significant other really doing anything upsetting, or are you simply worrying about what they might do? Look at the facts, not your feelings. Become familiar with what it feels like when these emotions arise, then stop them before they go too far.
Count your blessings. There is nothing that can set your irrational mind at ease better than rationalizing away your fears. Look at what is going right in your relationship and go over that list in your mind. Do those things outweigh the “feeling” you may have sneaking in for no reason? Face the facts and dispel the myths. Don’t ruin a good thing by overthinking things.
Ask for direction. If you are truly worried about a situation because you may (or may not) have seen red flags, but aren’t certain if it’s a real problem or not, talk to God in prayer and ask for direction. Ask Him to reveal areas of concern or to set your mind at ease. God is pulling for both parties in your relationship. He doesn’t want you to ruin a gift in your life, or the life of your significant other. But He can’t guide if you don’t ask.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. (Philippians 4:6)
Don’t let your own fear of failure or repeating of mistakes ruin a wonderful relationship that has come into your life. Get control of your emotions and the triggers that make you worry so you can avoid real problems in an otherwise great relationship because of your tendency to overthink things.
Think about this: good things don’t come along every day. Honor the ones God has given you.