In this article, it will be discussed why, sometimes, people may feel like their thoughts are betraying them and why it is hard to trust your thoughts. The article will discuss the impact mental health might have on your thoughts, and how one can cope with that.
Why can’t I trust my thoughts?
Sometimes it may be good to not trust your thoughts, for example, if you are having paranoid thoughts, a moment of calm, in which one can question their thoughts can go a long way.
But in other situations, questioning your thoughts constantly might be a sign of a lack of trust in your ideas and maybe even in yourself. If that’s the case, it might be important to create better trust in yourself.
Some things can affect your trust in your thoughts and on yourself. It might be that you lived through abuse, be it physical, psychological, or emotional, this can leave scars that can impact your confidence.
If that is the case, some ways can help you improve your trust in your thoughts and on your judgment. They are:
Fact-check your thoughts
A great way to start creating confidence in what you are thinking is to start by looking for evidence of what you are saying. Look for previous experience, try to establish a
pattern. For example, if you think someone might be lying to you, try to think about your previous experience with that person, and if they had lied before, how did they act.
Asking yourself questions is also something that might help. Make questions that confirm or deny your thought. For example, if you think you aren’t going to go well in a work meeting, question yourself if you are prepared for it if you’ve done everything you could to prepare for it. Try to answer yourself and not overthink it, because it can make you anxious.
Practicing mindfulness is another great way to trust your thoughts. When you are exercising mindfulness you become more aware of what you are feeling and thinking. Try to focus on one thought at a time, and go through it until you can move to the next.
Rebuilt your confidence
When one questions themselves too much, it can be a sign of lack of confidence. As a way to rebuild it, it might be important to make a list of your strengths and qualities. This will help you identify and recognize positive aspects of yourself.
Once you identify your strengths, be positive with yourself. Encourage yourself by positive self-talk. You can keep that list somewhere you might be able to see often. And when you doubt yourself, try to think why you tend to trust the negative things about yourself easier than the positives.
Give yourself credit and start small. Start with the small decisions, and praise yourself when you manage to make them. It might even be a good idea to save pictures or in writing about how you made the move.
Also remember that, even though you got one thing right, there will be times of uncertainty. Embrace the stress that comes with it. Remember no one knows everything, so try to breathe, relax, and do things in the best way you understand.
Rely on your support
Maybe look for therapy or friends so you can share your thoughts. Having people to talk to will give you a chance to see what other people think about what you are saying. In therapy, it will also be able to investigate why has it been so hard to trustee yourself
What are the mental illnesses that might impact my thinking?
Mental illness can affect how a person thinks. It can cause them to be afraid of things that are not real, for example, when a person has an anxiety disorder, they might be afraid of something bad happening, and even though they might know it is not real, in those situations it might be good to not trust your thoughts.
Another mental illness in which people may have negative thoughts is depression. When a person is going through it, they might have negative thoughts about themselves and the world. The thoughts can go to the point of questioning if the person is worth it, or if they still should be alive.
Having Borderline Personality Disorder may also impact what you think. It changes your self-image, and it creates in you an intense fear of abandonment which might cause you to think that people will leave you at any time. So not trusting that thought, can also be something positive.
In those situations, not trusting your thoughts might be extremely important. Putting yourself and your thoughts in question might be a way to cope. If you are going through mental illness and are realizing you’ve been having too many negative thoughts, looking for a therapist might be of great help.
Through talk therapy, one can share their thoughts, understand what aspects of them are based on fear, and in a negative view of yourself, and what are thoughts related to your real needs in life.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Why can’t I trust my thoughts?
What should I do when I can’t trust myself anymore?
If you are going through something and you feel you can’t trust yourself anymore, you should look for professional help. It might be important to have someone that can hear you but at the same time is not involved in what is going on. It will be a place where you can talk about anything without feeling embarrassed.
If you have a feeling of loneliness and distrust, you need a safe space. or might be that you are dealing with repressed memories caused by some traumatic situations, or a real problem that you are going on now, but being with a therapist will allow you to understand why you feel how you feel.
The process with a therapist isn’t going to be easy and things might not get better from one moment to the next, but it will make you a little at a time, be more capable of understanding your thoughts and feelings and maybe learn to trust them more.
Is it possible to stop overthinking?
Trusting your thoughts as a way to not keep overthinking everything you do is a process. The first thing to develop, so one can stop overthinking, is the ability to consider the options they have at the moment. If you have a decision to make, try to write down all the options you have.
That will help you see your options. Once you’ve done that, try to think of the consequences of each path, consider what could go wrong and what could go right. Try to think and feel what you want to do at the moment. The only way a person can guarantee they are making the right choice is if they choose what they feel was right for them at the moment.
There will always be uncertainty, there won’t be a perfect path, but if you made a decision based on what was right for you at the moment, you can rest at ease because you made the best with the information you had at the moment.
Why is it hard to explain what I’m thinking and feeling?
Sometimes it may be hard to explain what you are feeling or thinking because you weren’t taught to say what you are thinking and speaking. To learn how to speak up about your thoughts and feelings, a person must be capable of naming what they are feeling.
It could be that you’ve never learned it, or you were taught that you couldn’t speak your mind or your heart, either way, this might make you doubt yourself. or maybe you have a notion that when people speak up they should be perfect.
Either way, it might be important to work on your insecurities and your self-esteem and grasp the notion that even though you might not always say the perfect thing, what you say has value, and most likely other people would appreciate your input.
Why can’t I trust myself?
It might be that the reason you can’t trust yourself is related to some trauma in your younger life. People start building trust, in themselves and others when they are kids. It’s a trust that your parents will feed you, that they will leave at school but go back to pick you up at the end of the day.
It’s the trust you start building on yourself, that you will be able to calm yourself down when you wake up in the middle of the night, that at some point you will be able to take shower by yourself or do your homework alone.
When this process is broken or has a lot of problems in it, it can affect a person’s ability to rely on themselves and others. If that is the case, it might be necessary to work on your self-confidence. Therapy can be a great space to do that.
It will be a safe space, directed to your growth in which you can discuss what were the issues that prevented you from creating trust in yourself and how it can be created now. It can be through your professional path, relationship path, but either way, it will be how you realize that you can count on yourself.
What can I do when I’m flooded with thoughts I can’t trust?
When a person is anxious or is feeling overwhelmed by their thoughts, a good thing to do is to breathe, maybe do some breathing exercises or meditate, this will help you focus more on your breathing and the movements on your body than all the thoughts racing through your head.
Another great way to take the focus out of those racing thoughts is by working out. Going outside and moving your body might help you put all of your energy out, it will also help you focus on something else, like what your body is doing. Aside from that, doing some exercise can give you a sense of well-being that comes from the endorphins.
Talking to someone can also be a good way to deal with it, by speaking your thoughts, you can organize them in a better way, establish relations between one and the other, and maybe find a way out of them.
This article discussed how it may be hard for a person to trust their thoughts sometimes. It made clear why it may be important to question them, and what mental illnesses can affect your line of thought.
Aside from that, the article showed ways people can integrate their thoughts and what treatments can be done for that.
If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write it in the space below.
Kulacaoglu F, Kose S. Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD): In the Midst of Vulnerability, Chaos, and Awe.Brain Sci. 2018 Nov; 8(11): 201.