Attachment Anxiety – How to Stop Overanalyzing Relationships

If you’re tired of overthinking relationships to a point of ruining them; this will help you stop overanalyzing your relationship.

First of all, reading between the lines and analyzing information we receive is an intrinsic part of who we are as human beings. Analyzing helps us make decisions based on facts and not just feeling or intuition. From attracting back your ex perspective, analyzing what we read in a text or see in an ex’s actions helps discover useful information that leads to better decisions. Analyzing also helps us plan our actions strategically.

The problem with overthinkers and overanalyzes is that they take what is a part of human nature too far; sometimes to an insane and ultimately unhealthy degree.

Anxious attachment and overthinking and overanalyzing

If you tend to overthink and overanalyze your relationships, you definitely have an anxious attachment style. You may have an anxious preoccupied attachment style or a fearful avoidant attachment style leaning anxious.

With attachment anxiety comes a lot of overthinking and overanalyzing because the fear of rejection, fear of abandonment; and concerns about being unappreciated. These fears and concerns cause you to obsessively go over and over every word in a conversation; and every action the other person takes. You end up driving yourself crazy worrying and obsession over small things; and wasting so much time over nothing.

Something that is so simple and straightforward becomes so ridiculously complicated.  Some people so over analyze that when they eventually decide to act on what they think the other person said/meant; everything goes wrong because what they’re acting on is a reality they made up all on their own. Somewhere in their over analysis they completely lost touch with what was really said or what really happened.

These simple changes in attitude and behaviour will help you stop overanalyzing your relationship.

1. Understand and embrace why you overthink and overanalyze

The first step to stop overthinking and overanalyzing your relationship is to acknowledge that you tend to overthink and overanalyze your relationships.

Overthinking and overanalyzing is a bad habit that ruins relationships, but just because you overthink or overanalyze relationships doesn’t make you a bad relationship partner.

As mentioned at the beginning of the article, there are benefits to intensive thinking and analytical reflection, and you need to embrace this part of you that needs to discover useful information.

Learning to embrace your perceived or real flaws can help you better understand what is causing it; and find take taking action to get rid or improve it.

2. Stop looking for hidden meanings and messages that are not really there

There’s this old Zen parable that explains that not everything has a hidden meaning.

A Zen master was resting with his quick-witted disciple. At one point, the master took a melon out of his bag and cut it in half for the two of them to eat. In the middle of the meal, the enthusiastic disciple said, “My wise teacher, I know everything you do has a meaning. Sharing this melon with me may be a sign that you have something to teach me.” The master continued eating in silence.

“I understand the mysterious question in your silence,” insisted the student. “I think it is this: the excellent taste of this melon that I am experiencing … is the taste on the melon or on my tongue …” The master still said nothing. The disciple got a bit frustrated at his master’s apparent indifference.

The disciple continued, ” … and like everything in life, this too has meaning. I think I’m closer to the answer; the pleasure of the taste is an act of love and interdependence between the two, because without the melon there wouldn’t be an object of pleasure and without pleasure …”

“Enough!” exclaimed the master. “The biggest fools are those who consider themselves the most intelligent and seek an interpretation for everything! The melon is good; please let this be enough. Let me eat it in peace!”

Not everything your partner or ex says or does has “hidden” meanings and messages. Learn to take people’s words and actions at face value a little more. You don’t have to stick your head in the sand or “dumb down”, just stop trying to read more into everything.

3. Slow down and take things one day at a time

People who overanalyze and overthink engage in mind-reading, second-guessing, reality altering  are often too focused in the past or so far into the future that they ignore, hide from or forget about the present. Their minds are light days/weeks ahead of the present reality.

If this is you, learn to take one moment at a time and one day at a time as nobody can predict with 100%accuracy what will happen or not happen. There can and there will always be another perspective, reason, explanation, interpretation or something that will happen that you may have not even thought of. When the future you dread so much comes, you may find that it’s not as bad as you had imagined in your head — and you may have read into a situation something that isn’t there.

It’d be great if we could think up everything in advance to get the outcome we want or avoid those things we don’t want to happen. And it would be great if we could turn back the clock of life and un-say or undo some things. But we all know that’s not possible. So learn to trust the unknown a little more. Whatever happens will take care of itself if things are kept positive and realistic.

4. Focus on someone or something other than you (for a change)

If you find yourself so wrapped up in clutter thoughts, it’s most likely because you’ve gone far too deep inwards and are far too focused on you in an unhealthy way.

Focusing less on what’s going on in your mind and more on what’s going on around you keeps you present. Spend more time with friends and family, help someone else, join a cause that stands for something truly meaningful etc.  The more of yourself you share with others, the less time you have to turn in circles in your head.

5. Redirect your creativity

Understanding and embracing why you overthink and overanalyze your relationships helps you have compassion towards yourself. This is much better than thinking you are a bad relationship partner because you ruin relationships with overthinking and overanalyzing them.

Instead of trying to stop overthinking and overanalyzing your relationships; see if you can train yourself to direct that energy into a creative outlet.

There are other things in life that require focused intensive thinking and can take your mind off overthinking and overanalyzing your relationship, your partner or your ex.

6. Get professional help

If you think you can not stop overthinking and overanalyzing your relationships on your own, seek professional help to try to help you stop the behaviour or redirect it to healthier outlets.

RELATED:

10 Signs You Are Obsessed With Your Ex (Attachment Anxiety)

Attract Back An Avoidant Ex:1 – Attachment Styles Can Help

13 Signs Your Ex Has An Anxious Attachment Style (Is Needy)

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34 Comments

  1. says: Sonia

    I realize that the thing that is holding me back is my fear of the unknown- will he respond a certain way, will he find someone else, will he go hot and cold, will I be able to get him back…. I find that I get so consumed by it all that I can’t focus on the here and now. I’m either trapped in the past, or in the future. Learning how to be present is something that I realize is the key to being successful in any avenue, but particularly in terms of trying to get an ex back. Thank you for reinforcing that here- it has been very clarifying

  2. says: Kristoph

    Yangki, I love your advice. I share your philosophy and reading your articles inspires me to be a better partner as well as a better human being.

    If you ever come to Vermont USA, I’d love to buy you coffee and hangout with you.

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      I read “Vermont” and for a moment I thought it was Bernie Sanders. I almost fainted with joy…

      No plans to come to the USA in the near future, but if I ever did… I’d take the coffee to go, unless you are paying me to hang out with you. I charge a fee for my advice you know.

      If you are thinking of hanging out as friends, no relationship advice talk, I warn you, I am so boring that you’d cry into your coffee. Some nerdies are boring, this one is X2, that’s why you don’t see any tweets or instagram from me. No one would be interested. May be it’s best to just hangout on the internet, for now… 😉

  3. says: Tia

    I really needed to read this I’ve been single 2 years after a bad break up.I met nice guys but I over aanalyze and overthink every little detail until it drives me insane and I make up all kinds of negative scenarios in my head. Im always thinking somebody is out to get me and hurt me. It sucks I just want to be happy but I sabotage and push everyone away.

  4. says: Teree

    My ex and I broke up after dating for three years. The only contact we had for two months is when we run into each other. After spending two weeks on your blog and buying your ebook, I contacted him and we started talking again on a regular basis. He’s been working on himself and showing all the signs that he has truly changed. My concern is that i don’t know if I want to get back together with him. Sometime i know i want him back and can work things out but than there are other days when i think there is someone better for him out there and that i am not the right woman for him. I don’t want to hurt him and I’m scared that I will. Any advice?

    1. I think that you are getting way ahead of yourself. You’ve only just started communicating and I don’t see anything in your comment that says he’s told you he wants you back. It may be that he wants you back, but let things play out slowly instead of over-thinking them to a premature conclusion.

      That said, you’re right to be concerned. The fact that you even think that there is someone better for him out there says that you don’t feel good about yourself. Even if the two of you agreed to try the relationship again, your insecurities/inadequacies will undermine your efforts.

      Take things slowly to give yourself time to work on you. If after you’ve worked on your insecurities/inadequacies you still don’t know if you want to get back together, then make your decision on what you should do from a place of self-value and self-confidence. You may find that you want him in your life but not as a boyfriend.

  5. says: RayD

    We were apart for a long time, almost 3 years. One day I looked her up, we texted each other and decided to meet the next day. We both admitted that the attraction was still there and things moved quickly. Within 6 months we were practically living together, either at her place or mine. For a couple of weeks now I’ve noticed her pulling away. She says I overanalyze everything and want answers where there are no answers. She says it makes her feel not trusted. The truth is I love her and trust her, I just can’t help constantly analyzing the relationship to the point of wanting to end it to stop the constant chatter in my head.

    1. At least you recognize that most of the time it has nothing to do with the other person… it’s all you… in your head.

      I think that it might help your relationship (and you too) if you worked on trying to trust more. In my personal experience, I’ve realized that when my mind gets stuck on something, it’s not usually about that something. The constant coming back to it is just a signal that there is a deeper underlying issue that needs to be dealt with.

      It’s like when you have a problem with one of your teeth and your tongue keeps going to it, or you have an itch and your hand just goes there without you even thinking about it.

      There is a reason your mind keeps going there. May be you’re afraid she’ll cheat on you or leave you, and your mind is looking for an excuse for you to get out before it happens. May be it’s self-esteem issues, not feeling good enough for her. May be it’s something else. Deal with whatever it is, and you will not have to get out of the relationship to give your mind a rest.

  6. says: charlie

    I like this article it definatly speaks to me. Im seeing someone and tend to overanalyze things she’s says. She’s a single mom and dating someone with a child is different from what im used too. I don’t want to mess this up so im just going to breath a little more and find something else to focus on.

  7. says: Cathy M.

    I overanalyze everything… texts, conversations, body language, actions. I have ruined many good relationships with it. Recently someone I love very much broke up with me because he felt that nothing he did made me happy because I scrutinize excessively. I’m tired of being this way, and will use your advice to change my ways.

  8. says: adam

    My girlfriend fell asleep as my thoughts consumed me. I got so frustrated overthinking our relationship I searched for some kind of relief, and I found this. It seems like I can never be happy in a relationship without finding myself here time and time again. I always find excuses to doubt whether or not she really loves me, or if we are really meant for each other. I should leave it alone. This is helpful.

    1. Responding instead of reacting takes a while getting used to. Even I sometimes catch myself going on auto (reaction). What helps is just being aware of your mind’s habits and asking yourself, “Am I reacting to how I perceive the situation or a responding to what is actually happening”.

      Just watch that you don’t start over-thinking it too. The mind is a funny thing.

      All the best & lots of love… (:

  9. says: valarie

    I read this article and it helped me, I’m that person who worries over everything and read into things that are not even there. I try to stop doing it but i find myself back to thinking about the whys and the whats. I always think the worst of the situation after a week. Im finding this website very helpful. I just hope i can stop the over thinking and enjoy being with the person without thinking that they are out to play me or hurt me.

  10. says: Brains

    I tend to over analyze things but that is because I want to understand it and be able to come up with a sensible solution. I don’t see anything wrong with that.

    1. You don’t see anything wrong because there is nothing wrong if your analysis actually leads to a sensible solution.

      It’s a problem if you over analyze something to the point that it leads to 1) you speculating and worrying about things that aren’t going to happen, 2) your analysis keeps you in a mental spiral loop or, 3) you over analyze to a point where you can’t take any action in any direction.

  11. says: Zerinah

    I found this in my search on over thinking relationships. We initially agreed to just give each other space so we can rediscover that feeling again but then it became a breakup. For 5 months we maintained contact. A part of me says this is a good thing but the other part me says it will not work.

  12. says: Kay

    I want to say thank you so much for writing this article. Honestly speaking, I have been overanalyzing things for awhile now. Whether it’s a friendship, relationship, or just a simple question that only involves a yes or no answer. This unpleasant condition has messed up many relationships for me. Nevertheless, I’m ready to take control of my life and move on. You have help me to see and understand my problem a bit more. I now realize that in order for me to live a much happier and healthier life, I have to put my past behind me and focus on my present life.

    ~I’m Determined To Be A Much Better Person~

  13. says: Bri

    I absolutely love this article. I have never considered the fact that I overanalyze things to death. This has ruined a very important relationship to me that I have been fighting for everyday for over 5 years. I am doing my best to win him back and reading your articles bring me closer to changing myself into a better person first for me, then my future relationship with him.

  14. says: Jonathan

    I’m one of those that over analyzes every little thing people say and do. I can’t help myself. This article will ehlp i believe but professional help i need i think. i over analyze so much i destroy relationships and get very depressed over something that may or may not have happened. i know that i do this but i just can’t help myself. i am going to try the pointers in this article and hope it helps.

  15. says: Sion

    I am a massive analyzer and i suffer a lot with self-esteem which i think is half the problem, but what you said in this article is completely right you got to forget about the past and the future and focus on whats around you at the present moment because life is about enjoyment and not worrying or mind reading other people, I struggle to accept that I have so many good things around me and Im in desperate need of proffesional help, but this article has made me realise that there are other people out there with the same issue so Im glad im not alone in this sense. The brain is such a powerful tool, and when your brain is not accepting good positive things its very hard to cancel out the negativity.Thank you

  16. says: Shefflad

    It just hit me deeply..thanks for the wise words and advice it really help… is there a chance i can copy this to my email..??

  17. says: Lucas

    I overthink too much my relationship. I have an awesome girfriend and i tell her everything and it complicates our relationship. It was a relief to know some people are in my case too. Doubts can invade me and though I’m spending great time with her doubts invade me and worsen my mood making me eventually sad and thus lead me to think I don’t love her because since I am overthinking i do not succeed enjoying time or feeling happy as I should. I am still in need of help I think but this site helps Thank you for creating such topic.

  18. says: Beatrice

    i think im an overthinker but i confirmed i am one after reading this. and it has made me restless. this article is really helpful as a reminder to myself that situation might not be as bad as we think.

  19. says: Brandon

    I really made a connection here and I think this will help me a lot since I tend to over think things quite a bit. I shall bookmark this in-case I need to be reminded.

    Thanks and regards

  20. says: AG

    Thank you for making this article, it helped me a lot and i’ve even searched other websites and followed their articles as well but yours seems to be the most effective. I over analyze like crazy, i find myself sitting down at work and forgetting that I’m even at work because i cant get that one subject from keeping my head wondering for an answer. I talked with my friends about these things in hopes of knowing they might over analyze as well but all answered that i was the only one and maybe something is wrong with me. Finding out that there are actual people like me thanks to the internet, that put a lot of ease on my over analyzing. Finding articles like these to stop over analyzing helps a bunch.

  21. says: Elle

    This article has calmed me down a great deal. I have forever thought that i have a huge mess of problems because i overanalyze everything in my relationship with my boy friend. When i can step away from these issues, i feel like i’ve possibly found the love of my life but unfortunatly, because of how i read into things, i try to talk myself out of it. Even reading the comments from the other readers makes me feel better knowing that i’m not the only person who thinks this way. I just wish i knew more about keeping these positive thoughts in my head when i get overly anxious… thank you for the article, though! I think it’s a good reference!

  22. says: Melody

    This article really hit home especially when dealing with the “One day at a time.” This is very inportant because it will cause you to not see the forest for the trees. It’s a very difficult way to be and feel I’ve lost a few good relationships because I wanted to make sure I covered everything.

    Thank you for the well written article that lets me know I am not the only one who thinks the way I do.

  23. says: Andrew

    After a very succesful relationship that ended very suddenly because of her, I’ve become very unsecure with relationships. I keep overthinking about how I may mess up everything even when things are awesome! This is creating a very unusual character on me, that just can’t be happy at every moment. This “hidden meanings” things happen to me so very much! Thanks for the article and for letting me understand a little bit about this issues. Nice to know I’m not alone!

  24. says: kimmie

    This article was very well written. It also makes me realize how exhibiting these behaviors can attract similar types of people to you, those who will feed on that energy and sometimes play on it as well.

  25. says: Bree

    This was well written and very appreciated.
    I overanalyze everything myself and others do, that it drives me crazy. I over think in my relationships which makes it hard for me to ever truly just be happy and settled with the person I’m with.. Thanks to your article I realize now that I must calm down, take each day at a time, and just live in the moments and go with the flow. Thank you!

  26. says: Greg

    I’m one of those people who analyzes and dissects and re-analyzes other people’s words and behavior and the implications of their actions until I forget the original intention. Your article is a good reminder that I need to stop this. It’s messed up many of my relationships. Thank you for all you do.

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