Our brains have an estimated 50,000 thoughts per day and some research even states that this can reach up to 70,000. To the average person, this is a startling number when you think about how busy our lives are.
Dr Deepak Chopra, a New York Times Best Selling author and celebrity wellness guru, estimated in a recent article that this figure could even be as high as 80,000, and says many of these thoughts are recycled from yesterday, last month and last year.
Registered psychologist Kim Jilbert, who works at Adelaide Vintage Health, agrees with the figures.
“I can support the fact that people are thinking constantly,” Ms Jilbert said.
“I think, in the majority of instances, people have quite a balance of positive thoughts, neutral thoughts and negative.
Certain medical conditions can affect the thought process, she said. “What we find when people have mental health issues, for example say anxiety and depression, that balance can get skewed and the skew is more to the negative side of things,” Ms Jilbert said.
She teaches her patients how to effectively get these thoughts under control.
“I spend a lot of time teaching people how to do different sorts of relaxation techniques,” Ms Jilbert said.”
“It is about being able to shift your focus from being focused internally on your thoughts to being able to be able to focus externally on your surroundings and be present.
“The mindfulness is still very valuable.”
Twenty-one-year-old Flinders university student Matt Beacham, who is in his third year of studying psychology, knows first-hand what it is like to be constantly thinking.
“We have a lot of pressures in this day and age especially. I am constantly thinking about a range of things to do with work, home and university life. I also have an insight into the mind as I am studying psychology and I know how important it is to stop and let your mind relax sometimes,” he said.
Stay-at-home mother-of-three Hayley Adams feels like she may even think more thoughts than Dr Chopra calculates.
“I get around four hours of sleep at night, with three children under five I cannot switch my brain off even when I lie down. I have tried everything but I just can’t. I think I even think in my dreams,” the 23-year-old Happy Valley resident said.
“I definitely need to try some sort of techniques to help me to stop thinking even just for an hour a day.”
With so many thoughts going through our mind it’s amazing to think that we have time to do anything else.