There are some lucky people out there who aren’t cursed with the overthinking gene. Some people are blessed with minds that don’t jump to conclusions and that take things at face value.
They don’t over-analyze and over-interpret everything that happens to them.
The rest of us, however, aren’t quite so blessed.
Whilst overthinking can cause problems in any area of your life, it’s in romantic relationships that it tends to manifest itself most often, and where it can wreak some serious havoc.
Overthinking may have been the reason that past relationships of yours have ended, even if that particular thought never entered your slightly over-wrought mind. It may also be the main reason why your current relationship isn’t all sunshine and roses.
Worried you might be overthinking things in your relationship? If these warning signs sound familiar, this could apply to you.
1. You Always Change Your Mind
Your mind just can’t pick a lane. Your brain thinks about things so much that it can’t help but continually arrive at different conclusions. Only they’re not conclusions, because you don’t stop there.
You think you’ve made a decision, but you don’t stop dwelling and turning it over in your mind, meaning you’ve completely changed your mind again five minutes later.
2. You Can Read One Simple Text 10 Different Ways
The dawn of text was a disaster for the overthinkers among us. When you read someone’s words without the help of seeing their body language and hearing their voice, you can interpret the things they’ve said in a million different ways.
Are trying to be sarcastic? Patronizing? Are they annoyed? Are they uninterested? Did they ask any questions? Why did they say it that way?
You don’t stop there. It’s not just what they say, it’s how long they take to reply and whether or not those little ticks on Whatsapp have gone blue.
Whilst your friends might behave this way at the beginning of a relationship, they all calm down after a while, whilst you can read things into your partner’s texts even after you’ve been together for years.
3. It Takes You Hours To Compose A Text
If you can spend a long time dissecting what they’ve written, it will take twice as long for you to decide what to reply.
4. You Have An Encyclopedic Memory For Things They Say
You can remind them of the exact words they said during a fight you had 6 months ago. You store the things they say to you away in the depths of your brain, even if to them they were just throwaway comments, and you can easily spend hours mulling them over.
It goes without saying that your partner tells you that they don’t understand the way your brain operates.
You can’t really blame them, because even you can’t follow your thought processes most of the time.
9. You’re Always Convinced Your Partner Is Mad At You
You’re always sure that they’re mad at you or off with you because they seem too quiet, or too chatty. You can even read into the way they’re walking. Or the way they’re breathing, for that matter.
If they tell you they’re “fine,” you can spend hours wondering what they really meant by that.
10. You’re The Eternal Pessimist
Everyone else’s worse case scenario is pretty much the only scenario you have in your head. You’re convinced that the relationship you’re in is going to end horribly, so you can’t really see the point anyway.
11. You Always Say Sorry
You can convince yourself that practically everything going wrong in the relationship is your fault, even when it’s not, because you assume you must have done something wrong.
12. You Have To Have A Plan
You need to know exactly when you’re seeing your partner next, and can’t handle uncertain plans.
You’re convinced that when they don’t make immediate plans to see you again, it means they never want to see you again, ever.
By the time they do suggest a plan, you’ve already agonized over it so much that you’ve accepted that it’s never going to happen, so suddenly having a plan throws you off completely.
The uncertainty of the phrases “see you later” or “speak soon” fill you with dread.
13. You Need Constant Reassurance
Much as texting puts you on edge, if you don’t hear from them constantly, you convince yourself that they’re not interested. They don’t love you. They probably hate you…
You’re so busy worrying about all of the above that even when you’re actually with them and everything’s going well, you find it difficult to actually be in the moment. You’re too busy analyzing something they said yesterday.
15. You Trust Your Friend’s Judgment More Than Your Own
You defer to your BFF when it comes to any decision-making about your relationship, because you think they’ll make much better ones than you will.
You send them screenshots of messages to your partner asking for their opinion and wanting to know what to do, and blindly follow their advice without stopping to think about whether it’s actually the right thing.
You ask your friends the same questions and bring up the same topics again and again, and often get eye-rolls in return.
16. You Don’t Trust Your Gut
When it comes to head over heart, your head wins every time. You ignore what your instinct is trying to tell you and determinedly make a detailed pros and cons list instead.
Katie splits her time between writing and translation. She writes about travel and self-care and never stays in one place for too long. She’s currently based in beautiful Cornwall, England, after long stints in Brazil and Mexico. She spends her free time trail running, exploring and devouring vegan food.