The Fishbowl Effect

Have you ever gone to town over-analysing something? So much that it becomes bigger and bigger and more and more frightening and serious the more that you mull it over. You play different hypothetical scenarios over and over in your mind until you become so overwhelmed that your brain actually begins to ache and all you can do is curl up in a ball and wait until you pass out from sheer exhaustion!

Because I have a piece of advice for you if you found yourself nodding along to anything that I just said. Whatever the problem is, say it out loud. Trust me.

All problems are magnified when you keep them inside your head, think of it like a fish bowl effect. The way to bring your problem back down to its real size is by taking it out of the fish bowl aka your head, and to do that you need to talk about it (preferably to someone who you know is quite level-headed). Once you manage to say it out loud you’ll see just how measly it really is and how capable you are of resolving it.

I figured this out recently. I was having a bit of a moral dilemma, going back and forth in my head trying to figure out how to solve a problem that I was struggling with. But with only myself to bounce ideas off, I was getting nowhere! I could talk myself into doing something just as easily as I could talk myself out of it, and I was dramatising everything, meaning I was at a dead end.

And so I opted to bury my head in the sand. That way I could avoid having to deal with the issue; if nobody else knew about my dilemma I could easily brush it under the carpet. Was that a good plan of action? Of course not, all it did was stress me out even more! Because even though the problem had been pushed to the back of my mind, I still knew that sooner or later it would have to be dealt with! I think I overestimate how much I can pull the wool over my own eyes sometimes.

So I met up with a couple of my friends, casually mentioned what was going on and they brought me straight back down to earth. I was blowing the entire thing out of proportion, they said. It really wasn’t that big of a deal (and I knew it wasn’t until I’d started building it all up in my head!). Ultimately I knew what I had to do all along, I was just being a scaredy cat, trying to over complicate things in a bid to avoid getting out of my comfort zone.

Phew! As soon as I said it out loud I realised how silly and trivial the whole thing really was. It actually felt like a weight was lifted from my shoulders and I had some clarity again.

Plus most importantly, my brain no longer aches! πŸ™‚

12 replies

  1. This is so incredibly meaningful a concept. As someone who used to stash all of my thoughts away, living in my head and excluding the rest of the world from my life, I can definitely say that my health and ability to process and deal with challenges had increased exponentially since I opened up and started letting others in (particularly through this blog and expressing my thoughts here…).

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