Knowing about the conscious & subconscious minds was one of the most pleasant and life-changing experiences for me. Till now I have read plenty of books on these subjects & implemented several principles in my own life. My core research topic was, why most of the top, middle and poor class people remain in the same financial bracket generation after generation. Who is controlling our financial success? As this pattern is fixed, then it must have some scientific reason behind this. This research leads to our core beliefs and then finally to our subconscious mind. Below excerpt about the conscious & subconscious mind is from ‘The Genie Within Your Subconscious Mind’ by Harry W Carpenter.
The conscious mind is logical. It has the ability to think, think abstractly, reason, criticize, analyze, judge, choose, select, discriminate, plan, invent and compose, use hindsight and foresight. It uses both deductive and inductive reasoning.
Your conscious mind, for the most part, filters the impact of input to the subconscious mind. Everything gets into the subconscious mind, but the conscious mind can influence the effect, or power, it has over the subconscious mind. The conscious mind does not begin to develop until the age of three and it is not fully developed until about the age of 20. You did not have this filter during your critical, early formative years. Thus, you have a lot of garbage in your subconscious mind that is counterproductive to your health, peace of mind, and productivity.
The subconscious mind, conversely, is not logical; it is the feeling mind. It is the source of love, hatred, anguish, fear, jealousy, sadness, anger, joy, desire, etc. When you say, “I feel…” the source of the feeling is the subconscious mind. Think of an extreme example, such as rage. A person expressing deep rage exhibits strong emotion, superior strength, is highly illogical, and has a poor (conscious) recollection of his or her carrying on afterward.
The subconscious mind reasons inductively, from the specific to the general. If you tell it you are clumsy, it will find a way for you to do something clumsy. Usually, the inductive rationale is not logical.
The conscious mind thinks of words objectively. Objectively the word “mother” means a female parent. The subconscious mind, on the other hand, is subjective and adds connotations to words. When you hear the word “mother,” all kinds of feelings are aroused. These feelings come from the subconscious mind.
Will, Power & Willpower
The conscious mind has a sense of awareness. It knows persons, places, conditions, and things. The conscious mind knows that it knows. It contains knowledge that we are ourselves and we are here.
Importantly the conscious mind has will. Will is the ability of the conscious mind to initiate and direct a thought or action. Will supplies the direction of your thinking. Human beings have free will.
Ah! But the subconscious mind has the power! An article in Psychology Today, August 1974, stated that, “…we discovered the brain is a source of electrical energy; it can do electrical work.” Your brain produces about 25 watts of power. The subconscious mind transmits this energy as urges, emotions, impulses, nervous twitches, etc.
This energy in the subconscious mind is inexhaustible; your brain functions 24-hours-a-day, all of your life.
The wonderful thing about using the subconscious mind is that it is effortless. No conscious effort is required to use your subconscious mind. Conscious effort, no matter how well-intended, only hinders the subconscious mind.
Doing something with the conscious mind requires effort. Remember how learning something for the first time took effort? For example, it took a while to learn to tie a shoestring. It is complicated the first time or two. Imagine if you had to write out all the steps clearly enough so that someone who had never seen a bow could tie one.
Once tying a bow became a habit—in other words, the task was relegated to the subconscious mind—it became easy. So easy, you do not have to think about it when you are doing it. In fact, you probably do not even remember tying the laces in your shoes because you did it subconsciously.
Single or Double Minded
The conscious mind has the will and the subconscious mind has the power. When the conscious mind and subconscious mind are in harmony, you have willpower. You are “single-minded.”
But when the conscious mind and subconscious mind are in conflict, there is no willpower. You are “double-minded.” Your conscious mind cannot directly overpower your subconscious mind and “will” it to do something.
when the conscious mind and the subconscious mind are in conflict, the subconscious mind always wins. The subconscious mind wins because it has the power (it has electrical and chemical power), and it is bigger.
Memory & Processing Power
The conscious mind has limited memory and most of it is short-term. The subconscious mind, in stark contrast, has virtually infinite memory. You are probably thinking it does not seem that way to you. Well, it is true. You have enough memory for everything you have experienced in your life. It is your recall that is fallible.
The subconscious mind can process 200,00,000 bits of info per second. The conscious mind can only process 40 bits of info/sec. So the subconscious mind can process 5,00,000 times more than what the conscious mind is able to. This according to information from The Biology of Belief by Dr Bruce Lipton. There is no formal agreement on how fast is the subconscious mind. For example, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine estimate that the human retina can transmit visual input at roughly 10 million bits per second.
Only about 0.01% of all the brain’s activity is experienced consciously. In other words, it is as if roughly 10,000 cinema films are actually going on in the brain all at once, while we are only consciously aware of one of them. Altogether then, the data rate processed by the brain is an astronomical 320 Gb/s!
When your conscious mind and your subconscious mind are in conflict, your subconscious mind wins, but only if you do not know how to control it. Your conscious mind is meant to be the master, and your subconscious mind is meant to be the genie.
The conscious mind can stimulate the subconscious mind into action, change habits, reverse negative thinking patterns, improve our physical and emotional health, and our conscious mind can even influence our involuntary functions.
A few decades ago, the thinking was that control of involuntary functions was impossible. Now peoples know that controlling involuntary functions such as blood pressure, heart rate, and circulation in a given area of our bodies, is possible.
Comparison of The Conscious & The Subconscious Mind
|Characteristic||Conscious Mind||Subconscious Mind|
|Time||Past, Present, Future||Present|
|Functions at one time||One||Trillions|
|Control||Master of the Subconscious Mind||Body and Behavior, Your Genie|
“Who is controlling your life…. Not you really. It’s your subconscious mind, a power within you” – Fastlane Freedom