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How do I stop over thinking at night?

230 Answers
Last Updated: 11/14/2021 at 9:25pm
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Lisa Meighan, BSc Psychology (Honours)


Hello, I am Lisa and I work in a person-centred approach mixed with cognitive behavioural therapy. I believe we all have the potential to be the best we can be.

Top Rated Answers
June 17th, 2017 10:07pm
You can try to read a book or listen to music before you go to sleep. It can distract you from thinking about your own issues
June 23rd, 2017 2:25pm
Try breathing exercises, stretching, or yoga/Pilates to help put your mind at ease, staying active can help with overthinking.
August 13th, 2017 2:42am
To stop overthinking, I suggest doing a few things. First, sometimes it is helpful to practice mindfulness before bed to get into an aware mindset which will help you from over thinking. Another thing you might want to try is working to resolve the issue/thing you are over thinking about by doing your best to move forward with the issue as much as possible to get it off your mind.
August 19th, 2017 2:45pm
you can listen music or do something if you cant sleep maybe you cant sleep because of thinking too much at nights.
October 19th, 2017 3:02pm
Making a bedtime routine helps to let your body know its time to wind down ( bath, book, infusing oils, ect) I also find a guided mediation helps because the guide is speaking out the words and while your mind is processing that it has a hard time making thoughts. Best of luck to you and Rest well!
November 10th, 2017 6:50am
try drinking tea or warm milk before you go to bed, and finishing homework and all electronic things at least half an hour before you go to bed. then, if you find yourself overthinking at night, try to direct your thoughts to something you can't overthink or link to what you've been overthinking. hope this helps!
November 11th, 2017 1:53pm
In order to stop overthinking, you must try to live in the present. Only try to think about the here and now. Live by minutes, then hours, then by the day. Set small goals within these time frames and over time you will see how you have transformed.
November 14th, 2017 5:52pm
This is not an easy thing to do, but that doesn't mean that it is impossible or beyond your reach. You certainly need to make changes in your life if you really want to stop over thinking at night, particularly when you're laying down on bed trying to sleep. As a lifetime over-thinker at night I've found out that mindfulness meditation helps a lot, so does exercise and avoidance of screens - phone is the worse, then computer/laptop and finally tv, because of the size of it - afer dinner (or 2-4 hours before bed).
November 15th, 2017 8:23pm
Overthinking at night when trying to fall asleep is something I've struggled with a lot, too - and still do sometimes. What usually helps me is to have a piece of paper and a pen next to my bed. Just before going to bed I'll try writing down the things that are worrying me and circling around in my head. This usually helps clear my brain. Also, whenever I and start overthinking I'll make the conscious decision to think about something - anything - else. Maybe I'll recall a good thing that happened that day or week in as much detail as possible. Or I'll daydream about some nice situation I can imagine myself being in. Anything, really, to force my thoughts to focus on something else.
November 19th, 2017 3:46am
Thinking about positive things and that tomorrow is a new day with a new energy
November 19th, 2017 2:57pm
What helps me is is a nice hot shower followed by calming music. When your out and about its always a good idea to head to your comfort zone where you feel safe
November 24th, 2017 12:06am
I usually count sheep to get my mind off things. If something is bothering you try writing it down then worry about it then next day.
November 25th, 2017 2:25am
You've got to find that one thing that relaxes you. It'll be different from person to person. It could be breathing deeply, listening to soft music, imagining pleasant and positive scenarios in your head...whatever works for you. In my case, I found that listening to audiobooks at bedtime is all I need. It's nice focusing on someone else's voice instead of our own frantic thoughts at night.
December 3rd, 2017 5:01am
Nightly rituals before bed are helpful to put our mind in a place of peace - for good rest. Yoga, listening to music, reading a prayer or devotional, etc. The important part is, to tell yourself as you begin this ritual that it is time to shut off your thoughts and just enjoy your current activity. Remind yourself this special time is just for YOU, and that the time for problem solving will resume in the morning.
December 8th, 2017 6:31pm
My mind often races at night as well. A lot in fact. But I can note that the more physically active I was that day can make a difference. On days where I know I didn't exert myself as much I can also achieve the same peaceful sleep results by doing a brief work out in my room before hoping into bed. Does not need to be anything over the top. You just need to exhaust yourself. Me personally, I stick with squats, push ups, and donkey kicks. After that I drink some ice cold water, go to the restroom one last time, and fall peacefully into bed.
December 10th, 2017 12:30am
Try meditation, it helps the mind and body to relax and overcome a lot of thinhs and the overthinking is one of them.
December 29th, 2017 3:12pm
One things that has helped me to stop overthinking at night is to listen to relaxing music. It helps me to relax, and is a good distraction from overthinking.
January 17th, 2018 10:57am
Listen to soothing music, exercise before sleeping, read before going to bed, write in your journal. Just do some relaxing things before going to bed.
February 3rd, 2018 1:46am
Try deep breathing and focus on your breathing for however long it takes. Use this time for peaceful meditation!
February 9th, 2018 3:17pm
Couple of methods I use is, 1. Plug in my earphones and listen to some interesting podcast. This makes me concentrate on the narrator of the podcast and not think. 2. Keeping count of the breaths. Inhale count 1, exhale count 2. Keep this doing till you reach a count of 10 and then start again from 1.
February 21st, 2018 8:06am
Although it comes naturally, worrying and overthinking only depletes you of the energy you could otherwise spend improving yourself, enjoying things or helping others. Rest assured that things that are not under your control will not be changed by overthinking, and things that under your control can be planned or improved. Instead of overthinking, for the beginning, try to plan ahead so that you won't be take by surprise by things. You can also try physical exercise or listening to calming music before sleep, so that you can use the night for rest and not for staying awake.
February 24th, 2018 11:41pm
1)Before going to sleep, write everything that is worrying you down in a journal or diary. I find this to be very helpful. 2) Another tactic is to think in a week, a month or a few years how much will the thing you'll be worrying about matter? Often it will be not at all. 3) Try to establish a routine before bed, not looking at screens etc. Good luck xo
February 28th, 2018 2:26pm
Read a good book, listen to soothing music. I find that listening to slower songs by artists that you love is a very good way to calm down!
March 1st, 2018 10:57pm
I have struggled with my sleep as a result of my depression and anxiety for just over 8 years now. In the beginning, nothing worked and I was stuck in a cycle of being miserable. Slowly but surely I started to really try to be more open minded and put more effort into getting me help. What helps me now? I have a range of things that help. I ensure that I do not touch my phone for at least an hour before going to bed, i find that social media makes me more anxious and prompts overthinking. I like to journal, puzzle, or colour in in this time to erlax and wind down from the day. I also practice 10 minutes of guided meditation before going to sleep as well. It is a constant battle of having to remind myself to calm down and sleep. You just have to pull through it! Train your brain to stop. Keep reminding yourself that it's time to shut off and go o sleep. You can always think about it in the morning. If it help, put post it notes around the house or your room reminding you to say calm, and everything can be dealt with later and calmly. You don't need to continue on the cycle of overthinking.
March 4th, 2018 5:38am
To stop overthinking at night, write down your thoughts in a journal before bedtime, alter your thoughts on a separate topic or even talk with your parents or a friend over the phone an hour before to get your thoughts out.
April 12th, 2018 3:16am
Focus on your breath. Try meditate or do heavy thing to make you feel tired. Tell yourself that everything'll be OK.
April 12th, 2018 1:20pm
To silence your mind you must give into what its harassing you about. Maybe guilt is trying to make you apologise whatever it may be, give in to let go.
April 25th, 2018 12:41am
Time to relax and wind-down can really help. If you have specific worries writing them down and acknowledging you have done what you can for today is good. Create a clear boundary between work/time for others and time for you. Sometimes thoughts just keep coming - if they do this is okay - remember you choose if and how you respond. Imagine each thought is written on a cloud and as you breathe out see that cloud blown further into the distance.
May 5th, 2018 8:10pm
You can set a timer and journal for a certain amount of time. You let go of all your worries and then clear your mind, meditate, read a novel. There's always time in the morning to solve problems.
May 6th, 2018 9:13pm
Drink some chamomile tea as it relaxes the body and mind, or you can start meditating using applications like Headspace