Fast thinking syndrome is an inefficient thinking pattern, since it is characterized by an intense production of ideas that do not lead to conclusions
The contemporary lifestyle (at least that of the majority of the population in the richer countries that accumulates in the metropolises) is intense and frenetic. And it can end up taking its toll.
It is not surprising that mental health problems are becoming increasingly common. Recent economic crises and world events have increased the insecurity and competitiveness of many people, forced to maintain productivity at all times to ensure their own livelihood.
Similar to the sensory bombardment that people experience in the environment we inhabit, many people may find that their thoughts sometimes follow one another at an unstoppable speed and pace; this phenomenon is what we call rapid thinking syndrome.
It should be noted that this is not a ‘mental illness’ per se, but rather a sign of a deeper malaise, whether of clinical consideration or not: it is the consequence of a problem, usually because we are exposed to a great deal of stress.
It is important not to confuse it with the intrusive and recurrent thoughts typical of anxiety disorders in which we are anchored to contents and worries. Here the problem is the way in which the thought is expressed: that acceleration that derives in unconnected ideas that do not lead to any conclusion.
The consequence is a disorganized discourse, which does not allow us to access coherent ideas or which makes it difficult for us to express what we need at that moment. Living a long time thinking in this way can have a significant effect on our day-to-day life. It affects the resolution of routine problems, the correct performance required by a job, our family, personal and couple relationships… And all this with a negative impact on our self-esteem.
Fast thinking syndrome is perhaps not exclusive to today’s world, but it is certainly related to a lifestyle where we are bombarded by stimuli. As a strategy of adaptation to the environment, we humans have become much more accelerated, sometimes with negative results.
This is not to say that it will necessarily appear in everyone living under these conditions. As with most mental health issues, problems are usually the result of an interaction between the individual and the environment.
However, the treatment will necessarily depend on what the underlying problem is that is causing it. It is not the same when fast thinking syndrome occurs as a response to a stressful situation as when it is part of the symptomatic picture of a psychiatric disease, which is a problem of another level.
The approach, when dealing with healthy people with temporary problems, will be oriented to identify and work on the stressors that may be motivating this accelerated thinking. Sometimes, certain vital changes can be enough to work on this symptom.
It is a matter of reducing as much as possible the disruptive elements to which the person is exposed, incorporating relaxation techniques, scheduling daily rest activities, avoiding overstimulation promoted by the excess of information, training verbal and emotional expression, training social skills …