The Labyrinth of Overthinking: Getting Lost in Your Own Mind

By: Youmna Halawa

There’s always a voice that second guesses. It’s the voice that can be stronger than action. It’s the voice that deletes the text, retypes, deletes again, but never sends. It’s the voice that hates sleep. This voice digs in the past, dives into the future, paralyzing the present.

Daedalus, a man of myth, created the labyrinth, a maze so elaborate, complex, and twisted he couldn’t escape it himself. He made it with such skill and tact for the monster to be trapped. Yet he got so lost in the great creation, that he couldn’t escape it. However, the myth is not very much just a myth. You can create a labyrinth for yourself, so intricate that you can never escape it. A labyrinth starting with a simple thought. The labyrinth of overthinking.

This never ending maze of thoughts, is a result of our own distance from reality and hunger for perfection. The unrealistic standards set by the rulers of our daily encounters force canons upon the slaves: ” The picture should be prettier. The shoes should be pricier. The attitude should be careless. The waist should be slimmer. The conversation should be funnier. Shouldn’t have said this. Would’ve been more popular. Should be nicer tomorrow. Would’ve been taken. What should be worn? Who should I be?” All of these are decrees we dictate ourselves, for our minds are our own rulers and we are our own slaves.

We are creators of our own labyrinth. We get so caught up in the tiny nuances. We fog our judgement in a storm of doubts. We engulf ourselves in a sea of thoughts.

For we are afraid to be free, afraid of the possibility of our own selves.

Overthinking each detail of the past and what would have been, writing and rewriting scenarios of what could be, and doubting every feature of our character and self, are the chains that hold our potential. Overthinking hinders life. It makes us fear the growth that will take place if we stop worrying and start living. At the end of the day, no one really cares about the tiny details, for everyone is busy with their own. Even if they do care, what will it change? Worrying, fretting, and over analyzing never changed the past and cannot predict the future. 

If you don’t want to be trapped in the labyrinth just dont create it. Free yourself of the chains of self doubt. Escape the haunting prevalence of the tsunami you make of thoughts. Let go of what the commanding “superego” dictates. Filter the voices and raise the one that comes truly from within. Care about the steps that lead to growth. Take the action you want. Give yourself space to change and grow into who you are. Fearlessly and freely, let you be.

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