The subconscious mind
Have you ever wondered why it is so hard to make changes within yourself?! Maybe setting a goal to lose 20 lbs or stop smoking for instance. You set your mind to achieving the goal. In the beginning this is easy to do. Within a short period of time though, as soon as you get bored or distracted from the goal, you start to lose momentum and shortly thereafter you give up. It defies all logic. You know the excess weight or the smoking is bad for your health. You could probably list at least ten good reasons why you would benefit from achieving your desired result. However, something still prevents you from success. What is this unseen force that sabotages positive change?... It is the subconscious mind.
The diagram (Exhibit 1) is a symbolic representation of your mind. Note how much larger and stronger your subconscious mind is. It makes up nearly 90% of your total mind power. Consider this area of the mind your auto-pilot. It reacts to the world around you automatically and habitually based on your life experiences. It is heavily influenced by your childhood experiences and hasn't changed much since then. From birth until nearly 9 years of age you identified and associated to the world around you. You didn't know right from wrong or good from bad, you just developed a program that now tells you what your beliefs are. This program, the subconscious mind,
tells you how much money you are going to make, what type of person you are going to attract as a partner, how lucky you are, what you should fear or avoid, how happy you are and much, much more. The problem is that most people, including you, likely didn't have the perfect childhood. They were told things like "you're not smart", "you're not pretty", "why are you always messing up", "why aren't you more like your sister", "you need to be better than other people", "you'll never amount to anything in your life", etc. We take in this information as absolute truth and it becomes our reality and our life script. So we develop limited programs, filled with self doubt, which stays with us for the rest of our life.
So, going back to our initial example. If you have a goal to lose 20 lbs and set your conscious mind (which is where your logic, reasoning, analyzing, decision making, and will power resides) to reaching this goal, you can be successful for a short period of time. This is because you reason it is a good idea to lose the weight; you have made the decision to quit; and you are using will-power to stay strong to avoid bad foods. These functions are all from the conscious 12% of the mind. However, when your conscious mind gives up the fight, gets bored, or finds it too hard to continue, it weakens and allows your auto-pilot to kick in. The subconscious mind doesn't like change. Change is uncomfortable and scary to the subconscious mind. So in order to bring things back into balance, the subconscious mind reverts you back to your old (comfortable) program of eating poorly, becoming lazy, and gaining the weight back. This is called homeostasis, the innate drive to stay the same, and it will be your worst enemy against the fight for change.
The good news is that there are ways for us to change our programming. These tools are taught in the Mind Tools section of this site. These strategies and techniques allow you to reach the subconscious mind and change the programming to better suit your current desires. When you can change the programming of the subconscious mind to match what you want consciously, you have 100% of your mind working towards your goals. Your auto-pilot will now be on your side, seeking and achieving your goals automatically, habitually, easily and effortlessly.