Conscious vs. Subconscious –
Logic vs. Imagination
Successful people, whether they are top athletes or entrepreneurs, have mastered the power of their conscious and subconscious mind to produce their success. Many of us haven’t tapped into the unlimited potential of our minds because we lack the understanding of how our minds actually work. Our minds are actually made up of two distinct processes called the conscious and the subconscious minds and when we decidedly focus our effort on creating unity with the conscious and subconscious minds, we can achieve a greater sense of happiness.
Your Physical Body (“The Ship”)
In order to better illustrate this analogy, let me first put it into context. Think of your body as a large ship in the ocean. Just as a boat won’t go anywhere without a captain, your body won’t go anywhere without someone to give it directions. The Captain and Crew that pilot your body are your conscious and subconscious minds, respectively.
Your Conscious Mind (“The Captain of the Ship”)
Your conscious mind is like the captain of a ship. He issues orders to his crew and they follow it without question or evaluation. The captain uses his instruments and his experience to make decisions. He then issues orders to his Crew who follow those orders without question. Likewise, your conscious mind is like the captain of your body and your subconscious mind is like the crew that carries out those orders. The conscious mind has the ability to think, decide, and to act. It is rational in nature and its purpose is to either accept or reject the information that it receives. The conscious mind filters information to the subconscious mind.
Your Subconscious Mind (“The Crew of the Ship”)
If your conscious mind is the Captain of the boat, then your subconscious mind is the Crew. Like the Crew of a ship, your subconscious mind also takes orders without questioning the conscious mind. It simply obeys and carries out those orders. On a ship, the Captain with a well-trained Crew does not tell his Crew how to carry out his orders; he simply issues those Orders and expects that they will get carried out. In much the same way, your conscious mind creates decisions, thoughts and ideas which it hands over to the subconscious mind to act on.
The subconscious mind does not differentiate good from bad or right from wrong. It simply acts on those orders issued by the conscious mind in much the same way that the crew follows the captains orders, even if those orders will lead the boat into the rocky shore. Whatever orders are fed to the subconscious mind, it acts upon and carries out.
Your Thoughts (“The Captain’s Orders”)
Think of your thoughts as orders issued by a Captain to his Crew. The quality and safety of the ship can only be as good as the quality of orders being communicated from the Captain to his Crew. Your thoughts come in the form of autosuggestions, which are simply the way you talk to yourself, either verbally or internally. When you tell yourself, “I’m fit and beautiful,” you are issuing an order to your Crew to act upon. Conversely, when you tell yourself, “I’m fat and ugly,” you are also issuing an order to your subconscious mind to make that happen. The quality of orders or autosuggestions that you give your subconscious mind will determine the level of success you are able to produce for yourself because as Brian Tracy says, “You are what you think you are most of the time.”
The Power of the Subconscious Mind
Your subconscious mind is far more powerful than your conscious one. By learning how to train and use your subconscious mind, you will be able to control your behavior, break bad habits, get rid of unwanted emotions and fix your belief system. To use the power of your subconscious mind you must first know how the subconscious mind works. The subconscious mind has many governing rules; the following is an explanation of each of these rules:
Rules of the Subconscious Mind
Ä The subconscious mind does not differentiate between visualizations and real situations:
Have you been to a horror movie lately? If you have, then you must have noticed how your pulse raced in fear and horror despite being in no real danger. In simpler words, because your subconscious mind does not differentiate between real and imagery situations, it assumes that you are facing a real threat rather than a merely imagery one. Now, with such knowledge, you can start using it to your benefit. Suppose you had to give a presentation. If you properly visualize your presentation a couple of times before you actually have to present it, your subconscious mind will more or less believe that you’ve performed so well in your previous ‘presentations’ and is thus more likely to keep up the same level of performance in the next one; the real one!!
Ä Your subconscious feels that time passes faster:
Have you ever wondered why time always seems to fly whenever you’re doing something fun? It’s because you don’t keep looking at your watch every few minutes, something you would have probably done if you were in a situation where you bored out of your mind. Consequently, you’d be experiencing the passing of time ‘unconsciously’, and because the subconscious mind doesn’t have a sharp sense of time, you’d feel like you’ve hardly spent any time. The same would happen when you’re asleep; when you go to sleep, it is only your conscious mind that is in fact sleeping while your subconscious one stays awake. That’s why you feel like you’ve hardly had time to sleep when you wake up.
Ä The longer the subconscious mind believes something, the harder it will be to alter this belief in any way:
If you have a longstanding belief, it will definitely be more difficult to alter than a recently formed one.
Ä Every thought causes a physical reaction:
If you think that you are going to do badly in a presentation, your pulse and breathing would start to race as soon as you start talking. These physical changes are caused by that one thing; the idea or thought.
Ä What you expect tends to be realized:
If you are sure that you are going to fail an exam, you will indeed fail even if you have all it takes to succeed. Your thoughts and expectations serve as the master plan for your subconscious mind, so whenever you think of something, your subconscious mind will do its best to make it come true.
Ä Finding proofs to your held beliefs serves to strengthen them:
If you believe that you were not good-looking and someone makes a remark confirming your suspicion, you would probably be convinced beyond doubt that what you believe is true. That in turn would make altering your belief much more difficult.
Ä The subconscious mind always prevails in conflicts with the conscious one::
If you are achluophobic (afraid of the dark) and you passed into a dark room, you will definitely feel fear, apprehension and anxiety swell within you, even while you try to convince yourself that there is nothing to be afraid of. This is the result of the subconscious mind being more powerful than the conscious one; it will dominate your thoughts and basically “win” any conflict with your conscious mind.
Ä An idea, once accepted, will remain firmly in place until it is replaced by another:
For example, up until the fifteenth century, people believed that the earth was flat. When it was proved that the earth was a globe, the people of that time simply accepted this new fact, replacing the old belief with the new one.
Ä The greater the conscious effort the lesser the subconscious response:
This can be best explained by the example of someone suffering from insomnia (inability to sleep). Consciously trying to sleep will only make this person even more awake. By avoiding conscious effort and thinking of anything else instead, he/she would find that they will eventually nod off.
Ä Suggestions can be used to “program” the subconscious mind:
This is the main idea behind hypnosis, namely sending suggestions to the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind accepts all suggestions that are sent, providing the absence of the conscious mind’s supervision. For more information on that make sure you check the hypnosis section
What is the subconscious belief system?
- I can do that thing.
- No it’s impossible.
- I am good at math.
- Men always cheat.
What are these phrases? Are they some kind of opinion? Actually yes, but not just a normal opinion, they are beliefs. Beliefs are solid ideas stored in your subconscious mind. Whether they were really true or not, you will believe in them as long as you hold them in your mind. Beliefs get stronger when more evidence supports them and they become weaker when something appears to be contradicting with them.
How it is formed
When an idea constantly bypasses your conscious filters straight to your subconscious mind it may turn it into a belief. You may be asking yourself how can an idea bypass my conscious filters? The following are some examples that will show you how can this happen:
- When the idea comes from a trusted source: when you were a child, your main trusted source was your parents. If your parents told you that this animal is called a dog you will immediately believe them and since you will find that everyone around supports this idea it will turn into a strong belief.
Now what if your parents kept telling you that you were fool or dumb? What will be the result? you will grow up thinking that its true, and you may end up feeling inferior without knowing that this was the root cause for your feelings of inferiority. You may be asking yourself now, what will be strengthening this belief? This time it will be you, your subconscious mind will just pick every clue that supports this belief ignoring everything else. For example, if someone rejected you the first thing that you will think of, is that he rejected you because you are dumb.
- When you are hypnotized : when you become hypnotized your conscious mind filters will be turned off and so these suggestions will directly to your subconscious mind.
- When the conscious mind gets distracted: when something catches the full attention of your conscious mind you become highly receptive to suggestions. That’s the same idea advertisers use when they put their commercials in the middle of your favorite T.V series. In this case, your conscious mind will be thinking of what will happen to the hero of the series while at the same time your subconscious mind will be receiving suggestions by the commercial.
The Belief system and your life
Beliefs are so important to the extent that they could change your life. You may even create a self fulfilling prophecy to support a false belief that you have about yourself. For example suppose you think that you are not good at math. Most probably you won’t be motivated to study math because you will be thinking that whatever you do you won’t get good grades, and the result will be poor performance in the exam which will in turn reinforce the belief!!!
That was a simple belief. In some cases, beliefs totally ruin people’s lives like when someone thinks that he is a failure or when someone thinks that he is a victim.
Your beliefs can even prevent you from recovering after breakups and could keep you broken for years. False beliefs such as “He/she is my soul mate” can prevent you from recovering for years. In such a case getting over those breakups requires you to get rid of these false beliefs.
The right way to deal with beliefs
In order to prevent false beliefs from taking control of your life you must constantly challenge those false beliefs. Seek the right clues and don’t just pick the clues your subconscious mind wants. Keep asking yourself questions like; is it true that i am dumb? Do I have a 100% clear clue that supports it or is it just my imagination?
The more you ask yourself these types of questions the more you will be challenging the false belief and the more it will weaken.
The mind is composed of the conscious and subconscious processes. Remember that you are what you think most of the time, so make sure you feed yourself nutritious, healthy thoughts that promote the safety and well-being of your body.