over·think | \ˌō-vər-ˈthiŋk \
overthought\ˌō-vər-ˈthȯt \; overthinking

Definition of overthink 

: to think too much about (something) : to put too much time into thinking about or analyzing (something) in a way that is more harmful than helpful overthink a situation/problem someone who overthinks and worries too much "I was a terrible actor when I went to New York. I was scared. I would overprepare, sometimes overthink a role."— Paul Newman For a while now, I've been finding current fiction hard to read: airlessly competent, relentlessly put-together, overthought.— David Gates

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from overthink

overthinker noun plural overthinkers
But the problem is I'm an overthinker. I contemplate and consider, deliberate and debate things small and large in my life. Simple things become complicated and easy decisions become complex. — Alyssa Meier

Examples of overthink in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Jully Lee’s Yamamoto is strong and assured, a bit too prone to overthinking yet ready for anything. Daryl H. Miller, latimes.com, "'The Ballad of Bimini Baths' plunges into L.A. history," 15 June 2018 More Lamar ► Five NFL draft destinations that make sense for Jackson ► Don't overthink this. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Tests only tell so much about Lamar Jackson | Tim Sullivan," 4 Apr. 2018 The Suns were not in position to overthink this pick, needing long-term help up front, and value his star potential and freakish athletic ability. Jeremy Woo, SI.com, "2018 NBA Mock Draft 11.0: Trade Rumors and Final Picks for Both Rounds," 21 June 2018 Like many chefs say, keep things simple and don't overthink or over process an ingredient. Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, "Asparagus still rolling in — so many reasons to love it," 10 June 2018 Without overthinking things, that opens up the Big 12 race to at least one other contender, with TCU the likeliest to make a run at the Sooners’ ongoing ownership of the conference. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "Clemson, not Alabama, is the safest bet to win a conference title in 2018," 19 June 2018 At this late stage of his career, Kratz said his primary goal is not to overthink things at the plate. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Catcher Erik Kratz has made impact, offensively and defensively, since joining Brewers," 4 June 2018 The majority of people tend towards overthinking some things and under thinking others. Katie Parsons, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Holistic mental-health treatments can help, advocates say," 26 Apr. 2018 What the president needs to do is not overthink it. Fox News, "Ingraham: Democrats racing to the left," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'overthink.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of overthink

1628, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about overthink

Statistics for overthink

Last Updated

9 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for overthink

The first known use of overthink was in 1628

See more words from the same year

Comments on overthink

What made you want to look up overthink? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a state of commotion or excitement

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!