Does it really matter?

Have you ever been in such a situation, when all your attention, thoughts, and mood are focused on one particular question/problem/situation? My thoughts on how to handle that are here in the post.

Does it really matter?

Have you ever been in such a situation, when all your attention, thoughts, and mood are focused on one particular question/problem/situation? Seems that we all occasionally bump into this and most people don`t know how to handle an intrusive state of mind. I am trying to conquer this disease my whole life and last year I had some progress. Most problems that make me worried and steal the calmness of my mind  doesn`t really matter in the long term. This is a concept, that I came up with and it works for me the best way, I just need to remember it.

I often find myself stressed about things going on at work: cash flow coming in, clients blocking our activity, unfortunate projects, etc. All those problems pile up and I find myself getting up at 6 am instantly checking whether we got the payment from the client, approval of new scope, great feedback on LinkedIn - and nothing is there... I just continue to embrace all this endless headache and it starts to destroy my morning, then the whole day, and weekend, it just does not stop.

But what I found out about this never-ending cycle is that once you start zooming out of this situation and shifting to something else, maybe go for a walk, read a book or, as I do, mix some music, suddenly everything starts to fall in place. The last time I noticed this was a couple of days ago, I was waiting for approval of a contract with a new client, we were negotiating for almost 2 months, jumped on 3 zoom calls, and discussed different details, but since I sent contract our new partner was just in silent mode. I was feeling nervous about this, because my agency was going through the low season this summer and we are step-by-step coming back to optimal workload, getting more and more new projects, so each of them counts. It was about 9 pm, I got tired and drained of waiting for the response, sitting at home, and overthinking it (maybe there is some problem with NDA, maybe my letter is in the spam box, etc.) and decided to go out for a walk. I plugged in my airpods, turn on the music, and right at that moment, when I left my flat, I got an email letter, that contract is approved. The most astonishing is that I completely forgot about this work stuff (since tracks in my ears were really uplifting my mood and took my mind elsewhere) and exactly at this moment, good news knocked on my door. This happens fairly often, just take a couple of minutes to think about it.

Another great example happened about 2 months ago. I live in Tbilisi, Georgia, and here power cuts are a usual thing. Since I am working from home it really hurts my daily routine and once electricity was turned off for about 6 hours, the provider announced that it will be restored at 6 pm, it was already 6:15 when I completely destroyed my mood with this situation because there are no places near my flat, where I can sit and work. I had to jump on strategic a zoom call at 6:30, but there was no "light at the end of the tunnel"(and no light in my flat 🙂). It was coming up to 6:25 I decided to take off clothes from the dryer, which is on the balcony. I opened the door, grabbed everything from the dryer, turned back to throw clothes on the sofa, and boom - electricity is back!

What I am trying to convey by writing those stories is that you should not focus your attention on one particular problem, thought, or whatever, which makes you less present and stops you from doing something beneficial or/and pleasant in your life. My friend has a great quote about this, which goes "Those who are sitting looking at the phone waiting for the call will never get it". Don't take me wrong, I am not trying to say, that you should become all the way indifferent to what is going on in your life, it is always a question of balance. But I believe, that most of us spend so many hours with constant overstressing about things, which are not in our control, and the most precious thing we have in life, which is time, gets wasted because our mind is somewhere completely outside the present moment. It is either you control your thoughts, or they control you.

I have different hobbies, that help to switch off overthinking myself:

  1. Meditation (absolute game changer)
  2. Reading
  3. Listening to music
  4. Mixing music
  5. Physical activities (go for a walk, yoga class, hit the gym)
  6. Watching anime

I also encourage you to keep a diary and write there some notes (better do it daily, or at least when you have something to say), it really helps to structure what is going on in your mind. In my future posts, I will be covering this aspect in more detail, don`t miss out.

The title of this post is a question: "Does it really matter?" and I want you to ask yourself this question every time when your mind gets distracted by obsessive thinking. I bet, that 9 times out of 10, your answer will be: "No, it does not matter". Even if it is "yes", just keep in mind, that torturing yourself over things outside of your control won't help in any way. I know it is pretty easy to write this, but gets hard, when you are facing unpleasant situations in daily life, you should train yourself to be conscious and present, sometimes less effort brings you the most value. I have a good track by The Underachievers, which touches this concept from an interesting angle, check it out, if you have some time.

Thanks for reading out this post, I believe it may help you to cope with your busy mind, but this shift is not that easy, it is constant work, that allows you to take control of what is going on in your head. Let me know if you have any other ways of switching off overthinking and have a nice one today!