How does your mind work? What are its different aspects? How do they work together to create your reality?
Having answers to these questions about your mind can help you be healthier, happier, and more confident.
Did you know that you are unaware of 90-95% of what goes on in your mind? You live and exist primarily in your conscious mind, which is the part of your mind of which you ARE aware. It gives the orders, like the captain of a ship. It is also that part of you that you tend to identify with as being “me”.
Your conscious mind communicates to your inner self and the outer world through speech, pictures, writing, physical movement, and thought. But, did you know that it is only about 5-10% of your brain activity? I bet it seems much larger than that, doesn’t it?
An estimated 50-60% of your brain capacity is what is called subconscious or preconscious. Your subconscious mind is in charge of your recent memories, and is in continuous contact with the resources of your unconscious mind.
Your unconscious mind is the remaining 30-40% of your brain capacity. All memories and past experiences, including repressed trauma, and those simply consciously forgotten or no longer important to you, are stored in the unconscious. Your beliefs, habits, and behaviors are formed from those memories and experiences.
Your unconscious and conscious mind are in constant communication with each other via your subconscious. Your unconscious mind provides you with meaning in all of your experiences in the world as they are filtered through your beliefs and habits. You perceive your unconscious mind through your feelings, emotions, imagination, sensations, and your dreams.
A ship’s captain may give the orders, but it is the crew that actually carries them out. They do their best based on previous experience and training. Your subconscious and deeper unconscious minds are YOUR crew. They are what is actually driving and running YOU. You follow?
5-10% of brain capacity = conscious mind – speech, pictures, writing, physical movement, thought. Your “captain”.
50-60% of brain capacity = subconscious a.k.a. preconscious – information stored for quick recall; recent memories, information currently in use – phone numbers, names; recurring thoughts, behavior patterns, habits, feelings. Your “crew”.
30-40% of brain capacity = unconscious mind; long term storage of memories and habits, patterns, etc. Your “crew”.
The information stored in your unconscious and subconscious is essentially the equivalent of programming in your computer. They receive input from the world around you and your conscious mind, run that input through their programming, and create responses based upon the programming. The programming began long, long ago….. and can be updated – though not necessarily easily.
Their “goal” is to keep you safe and ensure your survival based upon all of the input you receive. They are assessing the level of threat to your survival and creating needed responses and changes accordingly. If “it worked in the past”, i.e., you survived, their logic says “it” will get you through similar situations again using the same means.
However, Their Priority IS Survival, Not Quality of Life.
Their primary function is a very primitive instinct built within you, with no regard to how misguided, or painful, or unhelpful the outcome is to you in the world. Thriving, and enjoying a quality life are something that develops with training and experience, i.e. additional programming. We will get to that in a future post.
Remember that stress results when there is a perceived threat to your survival. The resulting stress response in your body favors functions needed short term to survive at the expense of those associated with long term thriving. This creates dis-ease, premature aging, and a host of problems when it becomes chronic, i.e. your “norm”.
Your survival depends upon direction, coordination, and regulation of many bodily functions by your non-conscious mind. In other words, the crew of your ship is constantly reading various gages, and making adjustments as needed to keep your ship working. This includes such things as your heart beat, respiration, digestive functions, hormone production, blood sugar regulation, elimination, blinking your eyes, swallowing, immune system functions, temperature regulation, sleep/wake cycle regulation, etc.
Your ship can continue to sail, whether in rough seas, or simply a course you neither love nor enjoy. Light winds and calm waters wear on it less…..
Sailing a course for which it is not designed may damage it.
If you are not the right captain with the skills, knowledge and talent for the course you are following, you may also be giving the crew orders that are detrimental to your ship, too. They may have trouble following your orders if they weren’t adequately trained, talented, prepared.
And, if you are attempting to use the ship for something other than its designed/intended Purpose, aren’t you also in trouble potentially?
Much of this is actually difficult to empirically prove, and has been debated and contested over the years, but has become a largely accepted model that serves many very well.
You are the captain of your ship.
Is your ship designed to do what you are directing it to do? Are you sailing it according to its innate Purpose? Or, are you pushing its limits?
Or, perhaps it is sailing at less than its full potential….. Or, maybe it hasn’t left the dock yet…..? What’s it costing you wasting its potential?
Are you “qualified” to direct your ship in the way you are sailing? Is your course aligned with your gifts, traits, talents, and experience? Is your mission aligned with the design of your ship?
All of this relates to what is YOU-nique to you. How you have been you-niquely designed, and what you are potentially able change or influence to change your reality. It is about being respons-ABLE, not about blaming yourself. As a human you are subject to the human condition.
I leave you with those thoughts for now. We will explore the implications of all of this in relation to your ability to change your journey in future posts.
Here’s to Smooth Sailing!
How does YOUR mind work? What is going on beneath the surface in you?
Feel free to comment below.
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What do I mean “mind-body continuum”?
We often talk of the mind-body connection, as if mind and body are separate, but I have come to think it as a continuum: mind=body. Different aspects of the same……
This is similar to how vapor and ice are different states of water. As the kinetic energy, i.e., energy of motion, within changes, so does the physical state of the water. In the right set of circumstances, all states could exist at the “same time, same place”.
I find this “mind-body continuum” model better serves me in understanding how “I work”, in managing my life and health, and in working with my clients. I suspect it can serve you well, too.
Explaining “Your Mind is Your Body”…. Mind=Body
Let’s assume for argument’s sake here that it is true, as quantum physics now says is proven, that you (like everything) ARE energy (the scientific debates around this kind of do require a degree in rocket science to understand……). Matter = physical substance, i.e., your body. Matter IS energy. It is simply energy in a very condensed state, which behaves in its own ways. Like ice is very condensed water vapor and behaves differently than water vapor…. And, the water can contain other substances and components.
Wouldn’t you typically say thoughts are energy, not matter? They have a vibration, a quality that lifts you up, brings you down, or is somewhere between – neutral.
But wouldn’t you also agree that they also fuel creativity, whether it be the next greatest invention, dinner this evening, or peace in the world. Aren’t the thoughts that created those things still embodied in those things?
When you think of “mind”, don’t you think of “thoughts”? Your mind is thoughts, memories, etc.
Thoughts with that have a connection to feelings also make you calm, nervous, laugh, or even cry. They fuel responses in your body to make you sit up, run, stand, walk, etc.
Talking, laughing, relaxing, crying are all your body in motion, a state of being. What if that were the same as water being liquid, snow, or ice based on the conditions, i.e. the “thought” at the time….?
What if it is thought, a function of “mind”, that is creating your body? All of your body as you know it…… In other words, what if your body still embodies the thoughts that created it.
Suppose some of that “thought” creating you, is higher, bigger, greater than what you think of as “you”, or your conscious mind/Ego/intellect? Even bigger than your subconscious mind…. What if that bigger, higher, greater “MIND” is what is meant by the term “superconscious”?
I am using these terms simply to represent an idea, a neutral conceptual framework for contemplation. It is not intended to have any affiliation with any spiritual or religious beliefs, and is intended to neither support nor negate any such beliefs. These are paradigms that we are contemplating, exploring, researching, each in our own way. The term “superconscious” can be substituted with the term for your higher power, for example.
What if you, and Life as you know it, are simply a beautiful, complex, awesome THOUGHT based in the superconscious MIND?
Why Do I Share the “Mind-Body Continuum” With You?
Why do I continue living my deep desire to inspire you to think out of the box, and open your heart to new possibilities?
For one thing, this IS what finally changed my life and health for the better when:
- a traditional medical model alone did not help
- that medical model not only didn’t feel like the “right fit”, it actually could have made me worse
- that medical model disempowered me
- I had no idea that it was time for a change in my life, until I listened to the now louder whispers of my non-conscious mind
- I discovered “I” indeed had way more to do with what was happening than I realized
- I realized how the past was still actually “my present” in unresolved patterns and emotional responses
- I feared my condition would continue to worsen, and I may become disabled
- I knew my life would lack meaning if I didn’t have the opportunity to bring the same awesome, life-changing awareness and opportunities to others
Another reason I persist? I have already done the work, the learning curve, the trial and error, and I can save others from tripping over themselves, wasting valuable time and money trying to find their solutions. Not only can I help them find relief from their symptoms, I can help them get to the roots of their problems so they have TRUE lasting change.
The information out there is vast, and it can be challenging to digest it all. I can help you cut to the chase, take control of your life and health, get to the roots of your issues, dig for those pearls of wisdom in your stress and pain, and live your second chapter on your terms. You CAN live your healthiest, best life yet.
Our beliefs influence our perceptions. They can be limiting, or open us to new possibilities. And, they tend to find evidence to reinforce themselves, unless we are willing to open ourselves to new ideas when the old ones aren’t working. If you are stressed, your old ideas aren’t working…..
Going Deeper into the Mind-Body Continuum
In my next article I will dig deeper into the different aspects of the mind, and the roles they play. I trust that it will make this concept of the mind-body continuum even more intriguing, and understandable…..
In the meantime, I do believe you have enough to think about for now……
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Interesting linksHere are some interesting links for you! Enjoy your stay :)
- balanced life
- Being respons-able for your life and health
- chronic health conditions
- Chronic Pain
- chronic stress
- embracing change
- keeping your resolutions
- Life Purpose
- mastering time management
- Midlife Women
- Mind Body Connection
- Mind Body Continuum
- Pain and Stress as Teachers
- Personal Growth and Development
- Resolve pain and stress at the root
- self care
- Self Healing
- self-care during the holidays
- setting goals
- Symbolism in the holiday stories
- time management for fulfillment
- Unresolved chronic tension
- Unresolved emotional issues
- weight loss
- Wisdom of the mind and body