Wisdom//

Harness Your Subconscious to Get Answers to Life’s Questions

Leaving the ‘safe zone’ of the conscious mind to delve deep within can be uncomfortable, even scary. But it can have unexpected benefits.

Photo by Chinmay Singh from Pexels
Photo by Chinmay Singh from Pexels

“Being in the now” is a popular spiritual mantra among millennials as well as older generations. It is a useful tool for getting important things done, irrespective of one’s environment. It also presents a way to draw your attention away from unnecessary mental analysis to a “to-do list”, thus helping you prioritise your thoughts and actions. However, it deals with only the conscious layer of the mind and fails to address behavioural issues that are buried in the subconscious. Due to this, problems like stress, anxiety and low productivity keep resurfacing whenever we leave our mind unattended. And thus, we fail to come up with a permanent solution for them.

We are scared to leave the zone of the conscious mind, because we are bound with so many responsibilities in life: dropping the kids to school, paying bills, taking care of our health, meeting project deadlines and what not. These are among the most important routines of our daily lives. And if we set these tasks aside and try to go deeper into finding meaning and purpose, then our everyday lives go for a toss. So we leave the inner clarity to emerge for a later time, and continue to lead life driven by our daily obligations, even as a subconscious resentment of an unfulfilled vision simmers at the core of our being.

The path to follow our dreams, and to lead an uncompromised life, begins within us. Hence, we have to learn ways to harness the power of our subconscious mind so that it aligns perfectly with our conscious mind and our inner conflicts resolve permanently. Listed below are three ways we can interact with our subconscious and find the answers we seek:

1. Pray: The traditional method of praying to God is one of the useful practices of talking to our subconscious mind. In the process of praying, we express our deepest sentiments, our fears, our desires, our weaknesses and strengths. Essentially, what we’re doing is casting the light on our own underlying thoughts and emotions. This practice works in two different ways in parallel: first, our conscious mind gets clarity and the most immediate pending actions are revealed to us. For e.g., a pending task on which we can act immediately. Secondly, the intentions also reside in our subconscious mind, which works on higher levels of combinations of logical thoughts to bring us clarity we couldn’t have attained through the ‘set’ pattern of our conscious mind.

2. Take notes: Our subconscious mind never stops working. Many scientists say that their greatest ideas have occurred to them when they were not even thinking about the problem—when they were napping, eating or driving. Hence to deal with an unresolved, pending issue, we can feed our subconscious mind with all the information we can access through our conscious mind, such as by doing research, asking questions and reading all about an issue and wait for the subconscious to show us the result. A digital journal like ColorNote or Google Docs are useful tools to take quick notes when an idea occurs to you from outside your focussed awareness.

Remember that our subconscious mind never provides a detailed solution, but gives only short and abstract cues. It is the job of the conscious mind to put those cues into actionable steps. Hence, we need to be quite open and receptive to an idea that is revealed to us, no matter how absurd it sounds at the first instance, and should note it down immediately to work on it at a later stage.

3. Meditate: Often our cluttered thoughts disconnect us from our subconscious. Meditating for 10-15 minutes every day clears and detaches our mind from the looping thoughts of immediate tasks, widens our mindspace and attunes ourselves to be able to listen to our subconscious mind. This helps in expanding our sense of awareness, simplifying our thinking patterns, and often reveals the futility of multiple steps to perform an action where only one was needed.

These steps will not only enhance the quality of your life but will also give the clarity of where you currently are and in which direction you are headed. After all, the clarity of mind is what reveals our deepest identity to ourselves and adds purpose to our otherwise busy lives.

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- Marcus Aurelius

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