The incredible thing about the human brain is the ability to reform, remodel and change. While we may be of a particular disposition today, we can be different tomorrow. Our subconscious mind controls almost everything we do, so if we want to break free from negative patterns, we must tackle our subconscious mind.
Do you ever feel like invisible restraints are restricting you? But if you are honest with yourself, what are you doing to break free from these shackles? If you are ready to change your life, you must learn to reprogram your subconscious mind.
This article will outline the subconscious mind and the benefits of reprogramming it. It will also suggest 5 tips to help you reprogram your subconscious mind.
What is a subconscious mind?
At least 95% of our mind works on a subconscious level. This staggering percentage means that our behavior and thoughts and any action resulting from these are most likely to be initiated from a subconscious mind.
The subconscious mind is automatic. It uses past experiences stored in the big computer processor-style brain to gather external cues, interpret them and respond to them.
The subconscious mind does not stop. It is constantly whirring away. Even in your sleep, the subconscious mind is responsible for your:
- Primal urges.
- Feelings and emotions.
The subconscious mind relies on repeated conscious input, which, once repeated enough, becomes subconscious.
Think of when you first learned to drive a car. Every stage in this act required thought and consideration. Whereas now, I suspect you drive with your subconscious mind, meaning it is more of an automatic action requiring little thought.
The importance of reprogramming your subconscious mind?
What if I said you are not in control of your mind? We all think we have agency over our thoughts and behaviors, but according to this article, we are at the mercy of our subconscious mind.
Our subconscious minds are full of self-limiting beliefs. We form these childhood beliefs, and they stick with us. The child who is told they are worthless and will never amount to anything will start to believe this.
They internalize this message and it becomes part of their subconscious mind.
No one reaches their adult life unscathed. It is up to us whether we let our past ruin our future. Or if we are prepared to reprogram our internal systems.
It takes conscious learning to unlearn everything that limits us, from cognitive biases about ourselves and others to deeply routed ideas about ourselves.
If you have an unhealthy program running in your subconscious mind, now is a great time to wipe it, reprogram it, and start fresh.
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5 ways to reprogram your subconscious mind
The great thing about the brain is its neuroplasticity. This neuroplasticity means we can mold it like plasticine and change paradigms that don’t serve us.
But it takes practice and commitment. Are you ready to get stuck in?
Here are 5 tips on reprogramming your subconscious mind for a happier life.
1. Seek therapy
Sometimes it is helpful to understand more about ourselves to recognize what changes we need. A therapist will help you figure your feelings and emotions out. They will make sense of your thoughts and experiences and help you discover unhealthy thought patterns and beliefs.
A therapist will help you untangle any confusion. It may take a while; there are no quick fixes. They excel at bringing the subconscious mind into the conscious, allowing us to have a long hard look at it and see what adaptations are needed.
How can we change if we don’t know what we want to change? Therapy is a great starting point.
If you need more convincing, here's an article of ours that explains more benefits of trying therapy, even if you feel like you don't need it.
2. Practice meditation and yoga
Meditation and yoga help you engage the parasympathetic nervous system. They help calm down erratic thoughts and bring us into the present.
Both meditation and yoga help shift the clouds and create clear skies. They bring clarity and comfort. They help you figure out who you are and what you want.
These practices allow you to sift through subconscious thoughts and recognize unpleasant thoughts and their associated behaviors. They help you reject these thoughts and behaviors and return to your authentic self.
Meditation and yoga allow you to build a strong body and mind relationship, which increases self-esteem and confidence in directing your life toward your yearnings.
3. Engage with mindfulness
Daily activities can be mindful when we draw ourselves into the moment instead of allowing our minds to drift off into the past or jump ahead into the future.
Mindfulness is defined as “the awareness that arises from paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgementally.”
By its very definition, we can not simultaneously be mindful and led by the subconscious mind. When we engage mindfully, we quieten our subconscious mind and manage to focus on the here and now.
Yesterday, I helped my friend with her horses. I spent 20 minutes mindfully grooming her mare and focused on all my senses.
- The feel of her velvet muzzle.
- The rich equine aroma horse lovers cherish.
- The gentle, happy nose snort noises.
I brushed her with long, consistent strokes and spoke to her throughout.
Any activity can be mindful. Try and engage with your senses and pay attention to your movements.
4. Don’t allow negative thoughts to control you
Controlling negative thinking and stopping your thoughts from taking you on a joy ride is conducive to your happiness.
Negative thinking can latch on to your subconscious mind and leech out your motivation and self-belief. If we leave negative thinking unchecked, it can wreak havoc on our sense of self-efficacy and autonomy.
On the flip side, if we can take control of the patterns of our negative thinking, we can change the wiring in our brains and reduce the prevalence of these types of thoughts.
If you struggle with negative thoughts, check out our more detailed piece on how to deal with negative thoughts.
5. Practice affirmations
The subconscious mind deals with the present. In contrast, the conscious mind dwells on the past and fears the future.
Positive affirmations are an effective tool for dealing with negative thinking and low self-esteem. They stem from the self-affirmation theory. To be successful, they need to be built into a daily habit and practiced consistently.
To be effective, we must utter affirmations in the present term. For instance:
- “I am successful” instead of “I will be successful.”
- “I am strong” instead of “I will be strong.”
- “I am popular and liked” instead of “I will be popular and liked.”
The use of affirmations helps us live in the present instead of dictating our future with our past.
If you want more tips, here is our article on how to practice positive affirmations the right way.
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You don’t need to be a passenger in your life. It’s time to stand up and take control. Don’t let your unconscious mind dictate your life. You owe yourself more than this. You deserve happiness.
Do you have any other tips to help reprogram your subconscious mind? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!