In this post I will be discussing the subconscious mind. What it is, how it works and how we can communicate with it effectively to bring about massive change in our lives. What you are about to read may sound fantastic, unbelievable or down right crazy. I know this because that’s how the idea sounded to me the first time I encountered it. But after learning and applying a few things about how to use the power of the subconscious mind to make things happen, I have discovered that we all have a powerful mechanism which can lead us to success.
And most of us aren’t even aware of it.
What is your subconscious mind
In his groundbreaking book “Thinking Fast and Slow“, Nobel prize-winning economist Daniel Kahneman describes the mechanism behind how humans make our decisions. He does this by laying out a framework which describes two different modes of thinking. Thinking fast and thinking slow.
According to Kahneman’s book:
- Thinking fast (system 1) is the intuitive, gut feeling type of thinking.
- Thinking slow (system 2) is the analytical, critical, problem-solving type of thinking.
Both systems are active when we are awake and are in constant communication with each other. System one operates automatically, while system two usually operates at low effort, using just enough resources to solve the challenges we encounter in our day to day lives.
System one is constantly perceiving our environment, receiving information from our senses and creating impressions, intuitions, feelings and intentions.
In other words, system one interprets the world for us.
If system two agrees with the interpretations it receives from system one they turn into beliefs which, in turn, lead to action. We are used to believing that we spend most of our time in system two, but that’s actually not the case.
We mostly operate in system one; system two only comes in when we encounter something unexpected. Like when we come across a closed road during our commute to work and we have to figure out an alternative route to get there. That active problem-solving is system two in action.
Our Beliefs Determine Our Choices
Think about your actions. Every action you take is because you believe it will produce a result you desire. System one is in charge of creating that belief. System two is in charge of your choice to act on that belief.
All of our choices are made based on our beliefs. Whether our beliefs reflect the way the world actually works or not doesn’t matter. What matters to our choices is what we believe to be true.
You can think of system one as the emotional subconscious and system two as the rational conscious. Both are necessary for us to function in harmony with the world, which means that when either one is thrown into disarray our capacity to make healthy choices for ourselves suffers.
At Its Core, Our Decision Making Process Is Inherently Emotional
In the book “Descarte’s Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain” neuroscientist Antonio Damasio tells the story of a man named Elliot who suffered damage to the frontal lobes of his brain as a result of a tumor. Before the damage, Elliot was bright and functional in society. Afterwards, whenever he tried to accomplish a task he’d become distracted by trivialities. For example, when deciding where to have lunch he would be incapable of reaching a decision even after hours of contemplating his options.
Damasio performed a series of tests on Elliot. In one test, Damasio showed Elliot a series of gruesome images of earthquakes, fires and floods. Elliot understood intellectually what emotions he was supposed to feel when looking at these images. But he was incapable of feeling anything. No sadness, no anger, no fear. Nothing.
Damasio discovered that because Elliot was unable to feel emotion about anything, none of the options he ever considered were better or worse than any other. Damasio concluded that Elliot’s “[…] decision-making landscape [was] hopelessly flat.”
Our emotional subconscious gives value to the world. Our emotions are our guides in life. All of our choices depend on what emotions we experience. And our future is determined by the choices we make now. Therefore, our emotional subconscious determines our future.
The Sphere Of Life -Our Subconscious Mind Creates The Options We Perceive
I’m going to share with you a mental model that I employ to understand how our subconscious mind determines our choices and hence our futures. I call it the sphere of life.
Imagine yourself standing in the center of a sphere. On the walls of the sphere are projected all the facets of your life; your accomplishments, your failures, your relationships, habits and possessions; your entire life experience is rendered on the surface of this sphere. This is your sphere of life.
We each inhabit our own unique sphere of life. Every choice we make occurs within it; all the options we perceive are a product of our sphere. It’s our own personal world of experience.
Aside from our personal sphere there are an infinity of others. We all know this, we are aware that there are other spheres out there, some of which we would love to be in. But we can’t see these other spheres; we can only see the sphere we are in. So we can’t consciously move towards inhabiting another sphere.
Being able to move from one sphere to another is crucial, because among the sphere’s outside of ours is one, or several, where all of our dreams have come true.
And here is where you’re going to read the unbelievable part.
We have the power to change the sphere we inhabit, at will, by changing our subconscious, emotional mind. We can’t move from one sphere to another consciously. We can only do so subconsciously.
We have to use our conscious mind to change our subconscious mind so we can change our sphere of life. We can’t consciously see how to move our from one sphere to another, only our subconscious mind can see that. If we don’t get our subconscious mind on our side all of our attempts at changing spheres are doomed to failure.
How To Communicate With Your Subconscious Mind To Get What You Want
Do you want to inhabit a sphere in which you’re a millionaire? Or one in which you share a deep, loving, romantic relationship? How about one in which you can travel the world and work from anywhere at any time?
Well, by communicating your desires to your subconscious mind you can change your sphere of life to be exactly the one you want. It takes persistence, it takes time, but by regularly communicating your desires to your subconscious mind it will set about making the changes you want to see in your life.
This is because all of our choices are inherently emotional. And by changing your emotions you change your choices.
We all have the power to communicate with our subconscious mind. But unlike how we communicate with other people, through spoken and written language, the subconscious mind understands only one language: the one of images and emotions.
See, the subconscious mind is ancient. It has been around for waaay longer than any of the languages spoken around the world today. Our subconscious mind has been with us since we were hairy apes living in trees and even before that. And it served us superbly then, allowing us to create massive success for ourselves; to survive and reproduce throughout the world.
Our ancestors’ subconscious mind didn’t understand spoken language. It didn’t’ have to and it still doesn’t. It only understands images and emotions. It follows the same principles today as it did tens of millions of years ago.
I’m going to show you a practice you can use to effectively communicate with your subconscious mind:
- Find a quiet place. A place where you can relax for about a quarter of an hour without being disturbed.
- Lay or sit down. Get comfortable and close your eyes.
- Take three deep inhales and three deep exhales. As you inhale, fill your lungs up entirely with air. Hold it for a second. And exhale, as you do so imagine the tension leaving your body. The more relaxed you are the more your subconscious mind listens.
- Imagine what you want to experience in life. You can create anything you want in your imagination. Be as detailed as you can be, the more details the better. If you want to take a trip to an exotic tropical beach, imagine the sound of the waves crashing on the shore, the smell of the salt in the air and feel the sand between your toes. These details are essential to activate your senses.
- And now the most crucial part. Feel like you’ve already succeeded in getting whatever it is you want. Feel the success of being a millionaire, feel the success of taking that trip or being in a loving relationship. Feel. The. Success. If you have trouble imagining the feeling of success, then recall a time in your life when you succeeded at something. It can be any success, big or small, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you felt successful at the time, so you can use that seed of success to communicate to your subconscious. Everyone alive has succeeded at something. And you are no exception. You need to tap the feeling of success to communicate with your subconscious. Otherwise, this won’t work.
Do this practice regularly, consistently and watch how you start making the choices which change your sphere of life. Change doesn’t happen overnight. But you can be confident that each time you consciously choose to communicate to your subconscious you are moving to the sphere of life you so desire.
Your Subconscious Mind Can Effortlessly Lead You To Massive Success – Use It!
So there you have it. In this article I have discussed how our emotional subconscious determines the choices we make and, hence, our future. You have learned that the emotional subconscious communicates through the language of images and emotions. And you have learned a powerful practice to begin making the changes in your subconscious to create the life you desire.
Now go ahead and make great things happen!