The Subconscious Mind is just one of the parts of our brains: 1) the conscious part that controls our thoughts; 2) the emotions part that controls our emotions; 3) the subconscious part that stores all memories, habits, and skills. Accessing that part of the brain is harder than it sounds because both other parts have to work in unison.
This article will combine two of my previous articles (Subconscious Mind – How to Unlock and Use Its Power and How to Learn Meditation and Change Your Mind and Body) and will teach you how to access (and influence) the data stored in your subconscious mind.
Time to read
Time to read: 12 minutes (150 wpm).
Most of the information in this article comes from a book that I recently read – I will recommend it to everybody curious to learn more about the brain, the brain-waves, the subconscious mind, and meditation.
Breaking The Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One (link to goodreads.com, no hidden promo codes or endorsements) by Joe Dispenza.
In case you are interested in more of the books that I read and review – this is my Goodreads profile.
The three parts of the brain
In order to understand the channels through which you can communicate with the subconscious mind, you need to understand the three parts of the brain.
The thinking part of the brain is called neocortex. This the most advanced part of the brain, where our thoughts and identity reside. It allows you to learn, remember, analyze, plan and create. In general, it is the keeper of knowledge and experience.
As sentient beings, you would expect that humans spend most of their waking ours using this part of the brain. However, this is not true. As you will see later, you are using your thinking mind about 5% of the time.
The emotions part of the brain is called limbic brain. This is the most highly developed area of the brain in mammals. It is responsible for releasing chemicals based on certain conditions that affect your whole body. In general, it helps forming long-term memories because you remember the feeling or emotion associated with certain experience easier than the experience itself.
The subconscious part of the brain is called the cerebellum. It stores your habits, attitudes and behaviors. Breathing is an excellent example because you do not have to remember to breathe but you can voluntarily alter your breathing if your conscious part of the brain takes the control from the unconscious part.
Surprisingly enough, you spend almost 95% of your day using the subconscious mind because all of our daily habits are stored there. This is why life sometimes feels as though you are operating on autopilot because it is true.
Brain-waves in children
As you most probably know, your brain is comprised of nerve cells, which communicate between themselves using electrical signals. There are machines that can measure that electrical activity and give us insights into what we are thinking and feeling. Using these machines, we have discovered a wide range of brain-wave frequencies and we have associated them with different aspects of life and thinking.
The science of the brain-waves helped me understand a lot more about the brain parts. Below is a quick summary of when we develop the brain-wave frequencies as babies and children.
Children under 2 years old and sleeping adults experience these lowest brain-wave levels. You could think of a the brain of a baby as an empty field functioning primarily from their subconscious mind.
The thinking brain operates at very low frequency and the information from the outside world enters the brain unfiltered without critical thinking, analysis, or judgement.
Children between 2 and 6 experience these brain-wave levels. When they function in theta waves, they tend to be trance-like and living in their inner world.
They live in the realm of imagination and show very little rational thinking. This is why they tend to accept what you tell them and this is why children in this age can appear concentrated on their inner world. This is the realm of the subconscious mind.
Between 6 and 8 children develop their analytical brain and raise their brain-waves a level higher. They start drawing conclusions and defining the laws of external life for themselves. Their imagination is also developing and this is why children can pretend so well.
After the age of 8, children start operating on higher and higher frequencies. At this point, the communication channels between the conscious and subconscious mind are closed. Children switch to higher and higher levels (called low-, mid- and high-beta waves).
Brain-waves in adults
Adults spend most of their time in beta waves. Your conscious brain is busy processing the information from the outer world, analyzing it, storing it, and the emotional brain is busy supplying you with feelings based on the incoming information.
When your brain is in a state of relaxed, interested attention, your brain-waves are in low-range beta. Reading a book on a familiar topic is an example of an activity that will keep you in low-range beta.
When you are in a state of focused attention, your brain-waves are in mid-range beta. Learning is a very good example. This is why you are most likely to remember more from what you’ve read while learning than while you are just reading a book in low-beta rage.
When you are in a stressful situation (fight or flight), your body produces those stressful hormones, your brain is very focused on the external environment expecting to flee from or fight an external threat, then you are in high-range beta.
You could say that in high-range beta, you are too focused, your mind is too concentrated, and your body is too stimulated to be in any sort of order.
These brain-wave levels are perfectly normal for you when you are facing a life-threatening situation but can be harmful if prolonged and if triggered by every-day situations like a stressful email and an approaching deadline.
What if you could close your eyes (reduce the information coming to your brain by 80%), focus on your breath, and shift your attention inwards? Then, your brain-waves will naturally slow down because there will be less external stimuli, and you will enter back in the alpha range. You will analyze less, you will feel relaxed. You will redirect your attention from the external to the internal. This is why techniques like “counting to ten”, “deep breaths”, and so on can calm you down.
When if you continue focusing inwards? Then, your brain-waves will slow down even further and will enter the theta range. This is when you will be able to communicate with your subconscious mind because the barriers between the conscious and the subconscious mind are lowered.
Meditation and the brain-waves
The purpose of meditation is to lower your brain waves so that you can redirect your attention from the external to the external and access your subconscious mind which could only happen when your brain is in theta range.
Step 1: Induction
The first step during your meditation will be to concentrate your thoughts on something immutable and keep them there until the frequency of your brain waves is also reduced. It shuts down your analytical mind and forces it into feeling or sensing mode. Feeling is the language of the body and by shifting your awareness to the body parts, you will be thinking less.
Joe Dispenza suggests two possible meditation techniques:
- Scanning your body is probably the easiest. You scan your body part by part, starting from the head (hair, cheeks, brow, eyes), going down all the way to your legs (upper legs, knees, lower legs, ankles, feet), and every time you imagine the space that each part occupies and how each part feels. Then, you imagine your body as a whole and try to picture it surrounded by space (air). You become something more than your body and become less body and more mind. Finally, you start ascending above your body and see it from above.
- Room flooding was a bit harder for me. You imagine that the whole room starts filling with water. It reaches your feet first, then your legs, then your belly, and finally you are submerged in water. You imagine the space that each of your body parts occupied. You picture your whole body in the water and you try to feel what it feels. Finally, you float away from your body, separating the mind and the body.
Step 2: Access and accept
In this step, you access the subconscious mind and recognize a limitation that you want to overcome, to unmemorize. Ideally, you have done your homework before and you know where you want to concentrate.
You reach inwards and accept who you are now and what you have been hiding. You admit that there has been a gap in who you are and what you do.
Step 3: Surrender
Once you have accepted the existence of the limitation that you are changing, you surrender it to a higher power. Joe calls it the quantum field, you can call it guardian angel, same may call it God. The most important part here is that there is no judging – you are who you are and your habits are what your habits are. You admit these things and you develop a need and a feeling to change them.
Step 4: Observe
The next step, is to observe yourself having the thoughts and feelings of the limitation that you chose. You can try to picture yourself in a movie, doing the things associated with the limitation. You observe your old self until you become completely familiar with the programs that are running (habits), the triggers (what causes them), the outcomes (feelings, emotions).
Step 5: Change
While you are observing yourself having the limitations (watching the movie with yourself as the start) that you are changing say “STOP!” or “CHANGE!”
Step 6: Update
Once you have accepted your limitations, especially the ones that you would like to change, you start overwriting them. Remember that in the article about the subconscious mind I showed you that in order to make your subconscious mind listen to what you are saying both your other brain parts have to be on the same page – you want to change and you desire to change.
You can rehearse the behavior of your new self NOT HAVING the limitation that you are changing. How are you acting differently? How different are your feelings, emotions? Do you look different? Do others see you differently?
Nobody knows why we evolved like this but our three distinct brain parts are the best and the worst part of being a human. Without being familiar with them, without using their powers, and knowing their weaknesses, we could easily succumb to depressing or negative thinking and endanger our well-being.
Your subconscious mind stores such a large amount of information (memories) and programs (habits) and it controls such a large portion of your daily actions (about 95%) that you absolutely cannot afford NOT to learn about it. The ability to look into it, comes with meditation and lowering the frequency of your brain waves. And the ability to update the information in it, comes with deliberately directing both your conscious mind and your emotions to achieve the change and/or the new goal.