Roughly 10% of an iceberg is above the water and 90% of it is below. Have you ever heard that the human brain is similar? 10% of our brain function is conscious— it’s “above water” and we are keenly aware of it; we use it for reason and intention.
The remaining 90% of our brain function is subconscious—it’s “below water” and essentially on automatic, operating outside our awareness. It is responsible not only for 24/7 operation of the body, but also habits and belief systems. It is estimated that the conscious brain processes about 40 bits of information per second; the subconscious brain 40,000,000 bits. That’s right, 40 MILLION.
The subconscious is really the workhorse of the brain. It has no will other than to follow instructions. What instructions? Whatever it has been programmed with. It gets programmed through early experiences, repetition and intense emotion. The instructions create the comfort zone it seeks to keep you in for every area of your life…physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, financially and relationally. Subconscious programs will either support what you consciously want or be in opposition to it. You can get a glimpse at these by seeing what comes easy for you and what is a struggle. Ease reflects a subconscious program that supports what you consciously want. Struggle reflects a program in opposition to what you want.
I have two clients with similar personalities and attractiveness, and two very different experiences with love. Kelly always found dating and forming lasting relationships quite easy. She was attracted to men that treated her well and eventually married a great man. They have a healthy, vibrant marriage today. Trisha’s experience, on the other hand, was a pattern a pattern of constant struggle. She always wanted a good man but found herself in repeated relationships of abuse and betrayal. She is in her third marriage today, and that is quickly coming to an end.
She always wanted a good man, but…
Whatever is programmed into the subconscious brain, the subconscious brain will do. It will move you in whatever direction it is focused on…even if it’s on what you don’t want. I want to be clear, you will move in the direction of what the subconscious is focused on, not the conscious. A subconscious program can be completely opposite of what you want at the conscious level. This is why you may have struggled with positive affirmations, behavior modification and even prayer with minimal or unsustainable success. Because whatever is programmed at the subconscious level will determine your ultimate results. If those programs align with what you want consciously, you will experience ease, effectiveness and power. And wherever you have incongruent programs, your experience will be like trying to drive a car forward while looking only out the back window. You just won’t get where you really want to go…because you’ll be stuck in a ditch or outright crashing and burning over and over.
Here are four big areas to look at to identify your old programs lying beneath your conscious awareness:
- 1) Identity and worth
- 2) Familiar and normal
- 3) Acceptance and belonging
- 4) Fear and safety
Take some time to get present to what was modeled for you as a kid, any habit reinforced in your life and any intensely emotional experiences you’ve had in the four areas above. For any place you’ve had a pattern of struggle, right there you have a subconscious belief that’s different, even opposite, from what you consciously desire. For instance, you can consciously desire a loving relationship and subconsciously push it away because of the pain you have associated with love. Also notice the things that have come with ease for you. Right there you have a subconscious program that supports—is in alignment with—what you consciously desire. Maybe you easily make money or maintain optimal health, because deep down you believe you are worth it and it is possible. So the work is to bring the subconscious mind into alignment with what you consciously believe. Train it. Transform it. Making the subconscious mind congruent with your conscious desire will powerfully move your life in any direction you consciously choose. I can help you do that.