You have probably heard about the subconscious mind and how powerful it is. Many of the coaches, speakers and writers who work within the field of personal development refer to theories and assumptions about the subconscious mind and how much it impacts our daily lives. A common assumption is that the subconscious mind runs up to 95% (some people say even 97%) of our lives.
“The greatest impediments to changes in our traditional roles seem to lie not in the visible world of conscious intent, but in the murky realm of the unconscious mind.”
– Augustus Y. Napier
When you perform familiar tasks, like bicycling or driving, your autopilot kicks in. This means that your subconscious mind is running the show, that is, your actions. The same goes for all automatic functions in your body. With every heartbeat, blood is delivered to all the veins in your body – without you having to give the order. Stretching your arm might be a conscious decision, but your subconscious mind is the one that ensures that all the muscles coordinate their actions to make it happen. This is a good thing and it is necessary for you to function. If you had to consciously think of all the processes taking place in your body or how to do all the things you do every day, you would not even get out of bed!
Your subconscious mind governs many of your thought and behavioral patterns, often in ways that do not serve you, and without you being aware of who is in charge.
This is not your fault. Your subconscious mind is trying to protect you and keep you alive and is doing it based on programs that are either inherited or taught during your lifetime.
A big part of the learning took place during your first seven years. Your teachers were your parents, relatives and friends, school, television, society and others in your surroundings. If an experience teaches you that the world is a dangerous place and if that fear stays with you, it can be triggered by a body sensation, something you see, hear or smell. You will re-live the experience and your body will go into the fight or flight mode even though you are in a safe place and your conscious mind knows that you are not in danger. The subconscious mind will take over and run the program that has been stored to keep you safe!
The subconscious mind is also programmed with beliefs that have a profound impact on how you act (or not act) in your daily life, which ultimately influences what you attract into your life. If you learned that it is hard to earn money or that money makes people greedy it will permeate your belief system. This will influence everything you do and, by extension, your financial situation. If you believe that money is hard to earn and that money makes people greedy and if you don’t want to be greedy it will be hard or even impossible for you to earn and keep money. Your reality mirrors your beliefs.
Some sources say that we have around 1,000 thoughts per day and others that we have up to 100,000 thoughts. Most of the thoughts are repetitive, up to 90% as per some sources, and many thoughts are negative and limiting. Most of the thoughts are subconscious and based on our programming and we are often not aware of them. Neuroscience shows that repetitive thoughts strengthen the neural pathways and make it easier for the same thought or thought pattern to occur again. You get stuck in a repetitive thought loop. The good news is that you can reverse this and get unstuck. By learning to notice these repetitive thoughts and shifting your thoughts and attention away from the thoughts that keep you stuck – for example by practicing mindfulness – you start to build new paths. When you are no longer caught in the repetitive negative thought patterns you are free to choose your thoughts. You take your power back and it is you who decide what to manifest.