Have you ever gotten up for work and started heading in…
But the roads you imagined would be clear are surprisingly clogged with traffic.
Perhaps you take public transport, and the bus is heaving, or the subway is bloated with people.
You can hardly move. Progress is slow. Little by little, you march forward, but it’s like walking through treacle—two steps forward, one step back.
For overthinkers, life can often feel like rush-hour.
Every car on the road or person in the subway is a thought all trying to reach the destination. If they arrived one by one, the system would flow with ease, but together, it clogs, doorways jam, the network grinds to halt. Gridlock.
Navigating this tangle of thoughts sets us back, in our jobs, our hobbies and relationships.
It transforms life from a world of opportunity into a chaotic scramble.
Thankfully, we’re not alone. There are those who’ve taken the time to impart their words of wisdom into ink. So here are the best books on overthinking.
Note: You can listen to them on a free Audible trial by clicking here.
The best books on overthinking and anxiety
1. The Worry Trick by David A Carbonell, PhD
Anxiety can be a paralyzing force. For many, it is at the heart of their indecision and overthinking.
That gnawing question squats in their mind: ‘What if something were to go wrong?’
Seemingly innocuous events spiral into a cacophony of doubts and demons. Psychologist and anxiety expert, David Carbonell, has seen it all.
In this illuminating guide, he journeys into the heart of anxiety, exploring why worry tricks us into overthinking.
After exploring this roadmap of worry, the book explains how to break free from this never-ending cycle.
Using the latest psychological research in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), you’ll learn the full range of tricks to deal with your anxieties and overthinking head-on.
The book starts slow, but stick with it. In the second half, it teaches that avoiding worrying and trying to block out our thoughts exacerbates the problem.
Only by dealing with our issues, can we discover focus and clarity.
2. Clear Your Mind by Steven Schuster
The endless scrawl of social media. The will-it or won’t-it ring of the phone. The age-old worries of family and money and the future.
Living amongst such noise, it’s little wonder our thoughts are cluttered. In Clear Your Mind, Steven Schuster offers a way out, a way forward.
Convincingly argued, Schuster places emphasis on understanding and organizing our thoughts.
All bundled up with a healthy dose of brain science, providing a deeper understanding of the well from which worry springs.
In short order, Schuster will lay out the barriers to our lives and the main causes of clutter.
The only downside is that Schuster himself lacks the credentials to back up his book.
However, The school of life is a worthy teacher. With a lifetime of lessons learned the hard way, he has plenty of wisdom to unpack.
3. The Overthinker’s Guide to Love by Kristen Ruth Smith
Your job might run smoother than honey. Life might trundle along with ease. But if there’s one area we all overthink, it’s love.
Such unluckiness in love has plagued dating since time immemorial. As Shakespeare quipped, ‘The course of true love never did run smooth.’
But are we doomed to lover oblivion, forever condemned to overthink our decisions?
Kristen Ruth Smith doesn’t think so. Questioning the norms of our times, Smith – at almost thirty – transformed her life into a Love Laboratory.
Using observations and wit to replicate real-life experiments in the quest for her one true love.
In the process, she reveals hidden insights into our lives, how to quit overthinking, and uncover the fun in romance and dating.
Funny and insightful, the book beautifully balances earnest storytelling and hard-won lessons, iced with a frosting of data and science.
4. Unf#ck Your Brain by Faith G. Harper, PhD LPC-S ACS ACN
Sometimes pleasantries don’t do life justice and it takes a potty-mouthed counsellor from Texas to spell out some hard truths.
Badass and brave, Faith Harper has more letters after her name than in it.
But don’t expect kindly words or feel-good slogans: Harper is here to tell it as it is. She’s here to unf#ck your brain.
Delving deep into the science, the book explains in no uncertain terms why your brain is playing havoc. But you won’t just understand why your mind is tied in knots. The book will cut through the nonsense like a hot knife through butter.
Starting small at the irksome niggles that twist our thoughts, with her help, you’ll slowly understand more serious afflictions like post-traumatic stress disorder.
You’ll either love it or hate it. Replete with more swear words than a sailor’s mess, it certainly isn’t for everyone. However, if you’re looking to get to the core of overthinking, there’s no better place to start.
5. Reclaim Your Brain by Joseph A. Annibali, M.D.
Renegade thoughts have hijacked your brain, holding your life hostage. No more.
Amen Clinic Chief Psychiatrist Dr. Joseph Annibali is here to bust you out with over three decades worth of experience.
Whatever you’re battling with; be it OCD, depression, bipolar, substance abuse or anxiety, Dr. Annibali has a piercing insight.
Through a series of careful explanations, readers explore how imbalances in the brain lead to overthinking.
By following Annibali’s time-honed techniques, you’ll not only improve your cognition and balance your mind, but also find focus in a chaotic world.
The book is practical, the results incredible. Numerous doctors and psychiatrists have lauded the book for its accessible prose and methodical explanations.
So, if you’re struggling to manage your thoughts, if you feel lost in a haze, devoid of concentration, this book will help you Reclaim Your Brain and it might just change your life.