22 Ways to Slow Your Mind & Stop Overthinking

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What do you do when your mind just won’t stop? It’s that moment again… at the most inopportune time your mind decides to race, keeping you awake, preventing you from focusing, or completely distracting you from your mountain of “to-do list” entries. We have personal experience going from overthinking to finding inner peace. In this article, we are sharing 22 ways to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking, so you can live happier, healthier, and more purposeful.

I totally get it… you just want to get enough done today to feel productive and accomplished, and then sleep. But no… you’re worried about work, the family, whether or not you sounded stupid in that conversation earlier. You’re worried if you filled the dog’s water dish enough, and all the sudden are flooded with ideas to advance that project at work. Why do you keep thinking about work???? It’s time to sleep! Work can be dealt with tomorrow… but this graphic would look nice in that presentation slide… and should you really submit that video??

So what do you do? Do you distract yourself with Facebook until wee hours of the night? Do you turn on the History Channel or HGTV to “zone out” with until you fall asleep? Why is your spouse snoring when you can’t even close your eyes?!?!?!?!!

You’re not alone!

Are your thoughts a mess? We found 22 ways to help your mind slow down, so you don't have to be a slave to a rogue brain, and live your best life feeling fulfilled after learning how to embrace being mentally calm

Here are 22 ideas to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking

I’ve separated my ideas into 2 categories: inside and outside. I did this with the midset that sometimes you want something mindless to do inside as you’re winding down for the day, and because other times you want something to help lose yourself in out of your home.

  1. Photography
  2. Scrapbooking
  3. Puzzles
  4. Drawing
  5. Coloring
  6. Painting
  7. Needlepoint crafts
  8. Writing your own stories
  9. Sudoku
  10. Crossword Puzzles
  11. Journaling
  12. Blogging
  13. Reading
  14. Baking
  15. Cooking
  16. Yoga
  17. Meditation
  18. Playful activities
  19. Walking
  20. Hiking
  21. Gardening
  22. Essential Oils and Aromatherapy

Inside Activities to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking:

We all need low-key activities we can do inside. Whether the reasoning is inclimate weather or needing to wind down before going to bed, sometimes being out and active in nature isn’t feasible.

Pictures. Whether you’re a hobby photographer, love piecing together puzzles, drawing, coloring in coloring books, painting, or have a knack for needle point… focusing on creating pictures helps redirect your mental and emotional energy. Use your creative energy as an outlet for the flood of creative thoughts and worries that drive you mad.

Words. Words fly through our minds all the time, but focusing on one word at a time can help slow our mind and offer therapeutic qualities as we slow our silent rants into word search activities, reading (especially non-work-related novels – OFF SCREEN), Sudoku, crossword puzzles, writing in a journal, writing fiction, or blogging.

Reading. Reading books is one of my favorite past times. Especially books designed to inspire.

Smells. Yes! What you smell directly impacts your mood and your ability to wind down, focus, rest… etc. The aromas you breathe in can have some incredible impacts on your state of emotional and mental well-being. Scroll down to see our favorite essential oils, DIY blends, and non-DIY essential oil blends to help calm your mind and stop overthinking.

Outside & Activities to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking

Yoga (inside or outside), especially combined with meditation, is incredible for resetting your mind. A quick tip: instead of focusing on forcing a clear mind during meditation and yoga, focus on the stretches. Focus on how your body is moving and aligning. Focus on how each stretch makes you feel. When meditating, search for deep reflection and spiritual connection. The key isn’t to silence your mind, but to redirect your focus peacefully.

Water. Something about the water really charges you positively. Whether you’re canoeing, kayaking, swimming, surfing, fishing, or just sitting. Being in or near water helps with recentering your mind and helping you find balance and clarity.

Get Active and Play! Play with your kids or dogs. If you don’t have either, spend some time with a family who does. Kids and dogs both have a knack for simplifying life and bringing about some serious laughter and joy.

Embrace Nature. Take a walk, or hike through some trails. Lay in a hammock. Take a bike ride. Do something physical while surrounded by nature. There is something about hearing nothing aside from the birds chirping and wind blowing through the trees that helps give you a break from the city’s hustle and noise and helps you truly simplify your mind.

Garden. Something about playing in the dirt does a wold of wonders for an anxious, depressed, cluttered mind. The dirt, planting, cultivating (and harvesting – if you’re planting edibles). Seeing the fruits of your labor (no pub intended) offers some deep accomplishment feelings. You don’t even need to have a green thumb if you garden with plants native to your location. Many plants, especially perennials, can survive without constant maintenance and skill… literally put them in the ground and enjoy.

Aromatherapy and Smells to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking

Smells. The way different aromas play with our limbic system is so intriguing. Different smells incite different emotions. They can help balance your mood, relax your mind, help you focus, inspire your creativity, and motivate you to get moving. Exactly what you need to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking.

Baking. When I find myself in a funk, I often find myself with an urge to bake. Whether its cookies, brownies, cakes, or pies, baking reminds me of simpler times when I was young creating delectable items with my mom and grandmother. Now that I have a little one of my own, I cherish those moments when we make messes together in the kitchen, and the splashing fun that comes with cleaning up the mess we made. Time spent in the kitchen has always been special to my family.

11 Essential Oils to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking

  1. Frankincense essential oil – stress relief, hygiene, sleep aid, enhance your spiritual connection
  2. Myrrh essential oil – inspire tranquility and calmness
  3. Cedarwood essential oil – helps to remove obstacles from your mind and stop obsessing over thoughts
  4. Sandalwood essential oil – emotionally healing to help you stop focusing on emotional pain, obsessing about the past, and worrying about the future. Helps you stay in the moment.
  5. Ylang Ylang essential oil – helps you relax your mind, calm inner negativity, and reduces stress symptoms allowing you to calm down physically and mentally
  6. Neroli essential oil – helps you recenter and move forward to face your fears and anxiety triggers
  7. Rose essential oil – helps you regain a sense of self love and self respect, allowing you to appreciate where you are in your life journey
  8. Clary Sage essential oil – neutralizes negative energies within you, allowing you to free yourself from a negative mindset
  9. Vetiver essential oil – helps you focus, relax your mind, and be able to move through making decisions or resting without having a cluttered mind.
  10. Marjoram essential oil – reduces tension through your mind and muscles, allowing you to sleep better and enhance your immune functioning so you’re not literally making yourself worried sick.
  11. Bergamot essential oil – helps calm your mind, especially when anxious, to allow you to better focus on what is happening.

DIY Essential Oil Blends to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking

** PLEASE NOTE ** Don’t be fooled by clever marketing. Not all essential oils are created equally. Make sure you’re not wasting your money on fake essential oils, or oils diluted in questionable solvents. Don’t miss our guide on how to find quality essential oils to make sure you’re not wasting your money on brands that legally carry out questionable or unethical practices and mislead you through deceitful marketing practices.

Stop overthinking, slow down your mind, and sleep
  • 3 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops rose essential oil
  • 3 drops ylang ylang essential oil
  • 1 drop marjoram essential oil
Slow your mind and relax
  • 4 drops of bergamot essential oil
  • 4 drops of frankincense essential oil
  • 2 drops of vetiver essential oil

Where to find quality essential oils, and essential oil blends to help your mind slow down and stop overthinking without needing to DIY?

It’s no secret on this blog that we love using high quality essential oils. Whether you’re the DIY type or appreciate having essential oil blends pre-made and ready to go, there is always an oil or blend to match your current needs. After spending a couple years researching essential oil brands and regulations, we chose to purchase our essential oils from Young Living because of their Seed to Seal guarantee. This program provides complete transparency to how they sustainably grow their own plants free from any harmful chemicals, distill their plants without any chemicals through low heat and low pressure for a longer period of time, and bottle their oils without adding any fillers or diluting with any chemicals. Their products worked the best for me when I was overcoming an intense health crisis followed by an intense identity and mental health crisis.

And of course, sometimes you just don’t have the time or energy to DIY. My favorite essential oil brand has a few pre-made essential oil blends that are ideal for helping relax your mind and stop that overwhelming flow of random thoughts. You can find out more about our favorite essential oils on our Membership page.

What do you do to calm your mind, stop overthinking and recenter?

I’d love to read about it in the comments!!

Don’t miss our article about how to take your yoga and meditation practice to the next level using essential oils!

Nicole Graber, team leader, author, and editor to EssentialOils.Life and nikkygraber.com blog websites.

If you found this post valuable, be sure to let us know in the comments, and share!


P.S. If you’d like to learn more about how you can decrease stress and feeling wound up tight, let me know! I have a wonderful team of coaches who may be able to help you identify reasons you’re so tense and help provide natural solutions to help you according to your individual lifestyle and needs.


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