it is so deceptively easy to get hopelessly wrapped up in what you think is in someone else's head, what you think might happen, what you think you're going to mess up on.
this habit frequently results in the infamous 'downward spiral', as i fondly call my own tendency to catastrophize. i find it exhausting and frustrating, and i'm sure it's not exactly fun for anyone else around me either.
it begins with a small nagging problem or worry, and quickly blossoms into a giant void of hopelessness in which you are certain you are an absolutely hideous failure with no talent or intelligence whatsoever that will spend the rest of your life alone - except for your 18 cats, which will eat your face off when you die before anyone finds your body.
i've learned it's important to re-assess what's going on in your own head first, give yourself a hard reality check. do you have reason to think what you're thinking? is it really a gut feeling of instinct, or are you panicking yourself over something you extrapolated from a tiny, probably meaningless action or word?
these things are ridiculously difficult to distinguish between. the line between them is so very thin, and to make matters worse, it tends to smear and wobble in times of high emotion or anxiety.
nonetheless, that self-checking process needs to happen before you even allow a thought of the frantic downward spiral into misery to enter your head.
once your mind takes that first stair down, you risk the possibility - even the probability - that you will be wallowing in the depths of despair over nothing at all.