“Ugh, I’m too in my head.” Yep, that was me saying that… to myself.
One trait of mine is that – I can be a fairly neurotic person.
Yet, I’m a neurotic person committed to finding my way to greater health over time. Or rather, I’m committed to the pursuit of becoming more and more solid, peaceful, whole, grounded.
The whole essence of being neurotic, to me is being overly in your mind.
Nowadays, I see why this trait developed in me, in the first place.
In addition to living in an overly stimulated world… (“We live in the world’s first over-communicated society,” said authors Al Ries & Jack Trout, all the way back in 1981…)
I came of age, I would say, in very confusing circumstances.
I don’t need to get into all of the details of the story right here.
But I can say that, by age 18 or so, I had the strong sense that I had to be my own therapist. And that I had to figure myself out.
And that I had to figure out no less than – the nature of reality!
My sense of the world was, even then… epic, poetic, expansive… There were so many pieces to put together, so many rabbit holes to explore…
I did start dabbling in more holistic practices like yoga by my 20’s. But I continued feeling that my primary journey was exploring, seeing, perceiving, questioning, developing the big picture in my head.
I was still making sense of life, and dealing with life, and its occasional crises, major decisions, & turning points – largely through endless analysis.
NYC Blew Things Up to Its Extreme
In my thirties, the above tendencies really came to a head that was no longer sustainable.
Living in NYC in the internet/smartphone era brought things to a sort of peak of insanity – and I became a full-blown information addict.
I lived, day and night, for years – constantly on the trail. Like I was piecing together a giant puzzle.
I also began to experience overstimulation from living so wired all the time. I had racing thoughts, anxiety, & even physical symptoms like weird pains in my head.
As this went on, and I deepened into my thirties, however – strong emotions – probably things I’d repressed from earlier in my life – started coming up, and hitting me upside the head too!
As I felt increasingly crippled by my emotions, it became evident, eventually that…… the old strategies of analyzing my way through life weren’t working….
The sneaking suspicion began to dawn on me that, instead of just “connecting dots”, self-diagnosing, self-analyzing, and reading about things like mysticism and yoga and ideas to change the world…
I needed to go deeper, and actually – step away from my information addiction and actually DO more.
I needed to find a deeper way of dealing.
A deeper way of of navigating reality…
From “I’m Too In My Head” to – A Deeper Reality
In my mid-late thirties now, I’ve committed more & more in recent years to what has proved to be the way forward for me – practice.
And the more I’ve committed to doing – to practice, to being active – the better I feel.
I’ve deepened into realizing that the mind arises from the body, and not vice versa. (At least that’s my experience of it! And it’s the Taoist understanding too.)
The more I use the body and soul as my primary “tools” and the mind as a lesser, auxiliary tool… the more I come into right relationship.
I feel more peaceful, and more at home in my own skin.
Also, I’m better able to deal with my emotions and relationships.
In a lot of ways, I’m only beginning on this path!
But even just getting a little ways down this particular path, has made a world of difference so far.
And I recommend the above approach to anyone, going through what I was going through.
If you’re “too in your head”, it’s simple, at least to get started – tune into your body more!
“The more you move your body, the less thoughts can overwhelm you,” said Michaela Boehm, one of the teachers I follow.
There’s a whole spectrum of movement approaches out there.
I personally recommended choosing some from the more dynamic end of the spectrum, and others from the quieter end of the spectrum.
Also tools for managing your emotions may be needed, such as therapy. While very important, that’s a topic for another post.
Can You Relate?
Have you had a similar experience of being overly “in your head”, only to reach a crisis point where you had to find another way?
What are some of the best insights from your journey, or some of the best practices you’ve found?
Please share in the comments below.
And also – please sign up for my email list!
I’ll be sending out tips about deepening into the path of practice, for long term health and well-being in crazy times.
Thanks, great article.
Melanie! This is a wonderful article coming to all of us at such a critical time. You are so right, we all ‘think’ our way through life too much. It is a disease that it is so difficult to let go of.
Grad school really deepened me into the chaos of my mind. I was really trying to help myself emotionally and spiritually through it all but in reality my mind was ripping me away from a deeper union I had with life. It was a tough learning lesson that I am still figuring, or better yet ‘feeling’, my way through. It is an amazing feeling to know that I don’t have to let my mind run or ruin my life anymore. I am just aware of all the insanity now and don’t attach. Or sometimes laugh at the crazy stuff that I am conditioned with. It isn’t ‘me’ anymore….it is just my mind. And it is all ok 🙂
Much love and peace,