"Get What You Want"
The Amazing Mind
The Conscious and Subconscious Minds
If you have ever considered the many things humans have accomplished on this planet, you recognize the power of the conscious mind. And if you have ever tried to conquer a fear, change a habit, or get more motivated to do something you want to do, only to find yourself resisting, you know the power of the subconscious mind.
As powerful as the conscious mind is, the subconscious mind is estimated to be thousands of times more powerful. So much more powerful that whenever your conscious and subconscious are in conflict, your subconscious mind invariably wins. A fact you have no doubt experienced.
The conscious mind is logical where the subconscious is imaginal. The imaginal mind builds stories and the stories don't need be factual they just need to make sense conceptually.
The conscious mind actively seeks information and hands it off to the subconscious, which passively receives it, decides how to translate it so it makes a complete story and then where to store the story. It doesn’t bother with logic, that’s the conscious mind’s domain. The conscious mind then goes in search of more information. Problems arise when imagination and logic conflict. When that occurs, imagination wins.
Trying to eliminate a fear or change an ingrained habit through will power or self-discipline (conscious will) does not work, though at times it appears that it does. Yet people who insist on using a logical course of action still must imagine themselves doing what they want to do before they can determine to do it. Logic works with the conscious mind, but does not usually affect the subconscious.
For example, a smoker trying to quit must change the image he or she holds of cigarettes before a change, or even a desire to change, can take place. As long as the smoker imagines the act of smoking to be pleasant and cannot override that image with something unpleasant, the smoking continues no matter what others may suggest or insist upon. The same is true of a dieter. Before overweight, out of shape people can get fit and trim, three things have to happen:
- They have to change their body image, that is, how they see themselves in their mind's eye.
- They have to love their entire self, body and all, enough to take care of themselves on every level, and of course, this won't happen as long as the body image they hold is not to their liking.
- They have to look at food differently. As long as the imagination holds onto the pleasure of consuming big meals or high calorie foods, as opposed to seeing food simply as a means to nourish and maintain a fit, healthy body, the individual will continue to overeat and/or eat the wrong foods and will continue to struggle with their weight.
Notice that all of the changes noted above are mental or imaginal changes. We can't love what we see as a habit or an unappealing physical condition and, as long as we hold onto the existing "reality" and resist it, we are giving it strength... kind of like adding weights to a workout routine. The greater the resistance, the stronger the muscles grow to compensate. The mind works in exactly the same way. To change our reality, we first have to change our view of it.
The subconscious mind is like a homing device. It unfailingly follows whatever we focus on and take ownership of.
In the classic self-help book, Napoleon Hill's Think and Grow Rich, Hill came to one great conclusion after thirty years of studying successful men. The one great conclusion? Successful people achive great things because they are able to clearly visualize what they want and take ownership of it.
Clarity and ownership are the ultimate keys to success. But, here's the rub: until you get all the old rubbish that now clutters you mind out of your way, you won't have any choice except to deal with it, and as long as you are dealing with it, you are stuck where you are.
So the first step to having the life you dream of having is to get clear the way so you can OWN your dreams.