Dear Mr. Proctor, Dr. Dispenza, & Ms. Ledwell,
Let me first say how much I appreciate all the work you do in both science and personal development to help others. I have learned so much from your teachings that there is no way to ever show you how grateful I am … accept maybe to say, “Thank you. Outstanding work.”
You’re not the only ones who are leading the field in mindset/skillset development, of course, but you do happen to be three individuals who I’ve focused upon for over three years and taken what you’ve taught to heart. Bless you, all.
I, too, immerse myself daily in the understanding of how to turn thoughts to things in the most effecient and effective manner for both myself and my clients/students. Which brings me to why I’m writing to you.
I’d like to invite you onto a new playground to kick around a new idea. It’s a big one so I hope you’re willing to follow me down the rabbit hole.
Let’s begin with a question, one that is on the leading edge of both science and personal development.
What if … we don’t actually have a subconscious mind (subconscious thoughts) as we’ve been thinking for over 60 years now?
I know, I know, it feels like I’m suggesting that the world is actually round, that large hunks of metal can stay suspended in the air carrying people around the world and you can talk to someone anywhere in the world with an invisible frequency convertor the size of my fingernail. This idea is ‘out there’ but that’s why it’s a good place to start our conversation. You’re all leading edge thinkers.
In order to be speaking the same language, let’s define ‘subconscious’. The oxford dictionary defines subconscious as: Of or concerning the part of the mind of which one is not fully aware but which influences one’s actions and feelings: my subconscious fear. It goes on to say: The subconscious part of the mind (not in technical use in psychoanalysis, where unconscious is preferred).
I’ve taken that to mean we’ve been believing there’s a part of the mind where thoughts, feelings and beliefs live that we aren’t “fully” aware of. Do you agree? Disagree? Do you have a different definition?
The term ‘fully aware’ can be confusing but to me it means you aren’t aware. Why? Because you are either aware of something or you’re not. If you’re 1% aware of something, then by definition, you’re aware of it. It’s just a whisper, and not a whallop on the head awareness, but you’re still aware of it.
Still with me? Don’t worry. The rabbit hole can be dark and confusing at first, but I brought a flashlight.
The unconscious (mind, thoughts) is different, in my opinion. Unconscious means ‘no clue’ as in when you’re asleep, you’re clueless to your environment. You have organs and internal systems in the body that fall under this category … as in we don’t need to consciously make our heart beat and it’s still going to beat. I believe there are parts of us that have a consciousness within themselves such as our cells that don’t require our focus of attention to operate. Smart little buggers our cells, don’t you agree? When you cut you’re leg, you never have to think, “Please make a scab!! Please make a scab!!”
We live happy and productive live and are unconscious about how our internal organs and systems work. In order words, we are free to focus on other things such as work, play and relationships. Said differently, we are 100% freed up mentally to create a life we love.
But here’s where things get a bit tricky and your rabbit hole GPS might stop working. Take my hand as we got deeper, lots of thick old root system to block our way down here. I got cha’. No worries.
It feels like we’ve (we, as in teachers of personal development) been using the term subconscious and not being totally clear. We’re just assuming that we all have the same definition of the word. I was talking with a friend recently about the subconscious mind and she said, “I thought it meant the functions that we don’t have to think about such as breathing and heartbeat.”
(It was no different than if I had asked, “Do you like salami?” There are thousands of different kinds of salami. I was thinking pre-sliced, pre-packaged; she was thinking the thick, cut it yourself, has a white outer coating that gets on your hands kind.)
I, personally, thought that was the unconscious. Do you see how we already have confusion?
The prefix ‘sub’ means: ); ( ), ( ), ().(
By defining the term here, we are clear that sub means below, hidden. It feels like we’re using it in personal development to describe a part of the mind that is not unconscious … but yet not fully conscious.
Huh? Aren’t you either brushing your teeth or not? Talking on the phone or not? Angry at your boyfriend or not? If you’ve brushed one shoosh, you’re brushing. If you’ve uttered one word, you’re talking. If you’re angry the least bit, you’re angry.
Herein lies the trouble. There is no grey, things don’t work like that here, area in the mind. Why? Because thoughts either have emotions attached to them, or they don’t. If they’re emotionalized, they have creative power in your life. If you will, they have thrust. In Dr. Joe’s words, thinking in the language of the mind, feeling is the language of the body.
Do you feel the same about salt as you do about money? Which one has more emotional thrust and consistency to rattle your cage?
If I poked you in the arm with a stick, you’d feel it. If you poked you in the heart with an unkind comment, you’d feel that too. You are fully aware of both.
You’d forget about the stick, but likely not the unkind comment and you’d keep running that emotionalized thought through your MindMovie. And you would be aware of it but … after the first few days you’d just get used to it and ignore it more than anything else. You’d get so used to feeling yucky that you’d become, well, for lack of a more sofisticated description … used to it. But you would feel it.
(Poke, poke, go the “old” emotional wounds. They’re not old, by the way. If you’re thinking about them today, it’s by definition fresh in your mind.)
I’ve come to theorize that there is no ‘sub’ portion of our mind as we’ve been teaching.
Bob, you talk about the ‘subconscious’ mind as being the emotional mind. To this I would like you to consider that both the intellectual ‘conscious’ mind and the ‘sub’ portion (as we’ve been defining it) are more or less one in the same. (Intellectual mind and unconscious mind has different functions, yes. I agree.)
When thoughts have an emotion attached to them, they are not sub, or under or hidden, they are conscious. They are so up in your face that you want to give them a smack down. It’s why you want to punch the couch while doing bills or kiss the dog after your tax return shows up.
The fact that there’s a feeling attached to thoughts makes them conscious. We’ve just become so familiar with feeling “that way” that when thinking a particular thought, it blends almost seamlessly into the background. (Almost is a key word in that sentence. Don’t let it slip by unnoticed again.) We’ve also become so used to saying subconscious mind, that we don’t question what the heck that even really means anymore.
Friends, our shoes have holes in them and we love them so much we can’t feel the holes. Wait, nay … I’ve mispoken. We do feel the holes, we are aware of the holes …. we’re just chosing to ignore them. It’s hard to disgard an old pair shoes we love so much, that have served us so well for so long. But as we can do with negative thoughts, let’s just set these old shoes down for now in the back hall and shift our focus to the sale rack at Neiman Marcus. That feels so much better.
Let’s say you had a big freckle on your cheek. The first time you looked in the mirror you would quite certainly notice it. After a few days, weeks, months and years, you would not “see” it in the mirror but you would always know it was there. Emotionalized thoughts are the same. We just get so used to feeling a certain way when thinking certain thoughts that we ignore them, but we are aware of them … even if it’s just a whisper of an awareness.
If you’re wondering what negative “subconscious” whispers sound like, they go like this … She’s such a bitch. He’s so annoying. I hate it when that happens. Oye … if only that would stop happening. My stomach hurts. I hate my job. Rich people suck. There’s not enough money for me to have what I want and my ugly neighbor, too. CNN said so. I hate my thighs. I’m ugly. I hate my life. This is too hard. Wait, what’s that? There’s that knawing, anxious feeling in my gut again. It comes every morning with my coffee and bagel. I’ll just ignore it and it’ll go away. Doesn’t really mean anything anyway. If I told someone, they might not think I’m a positive thinker.
And you ALWAYS feel those kinds of thoughts, just like you do these, “I frigg’n did it!!! I love my life!! I love my spouse!! I am an amazing artist!! I love my hips!! I got a raise!! We going on vacation!! I wrote a best seller!! She made it out alive!!
So, what purpose does this conversation serve?
1) It helps us better understand how to help people both feel better and get better results in life, faster.
2) It eliminates the middleman. It releases us from feeling like a victim and believing that there are just some things (5% of our thoughts and behaviors to be exact) that we don’t have control over. Or that we have to wrestle our “lesser thoughts” to the ground or spend countless hours trying to morph them into “more positive” thoughts.
3) It’s a belief based on a false premise. What’s the false premise? That we don’t have 100% control in creating our realities.
(We’re at a fork in the road, Bob, Dr. Joe and Natalie. Taking a left turn in the rabbit tunnel. Stay with me. Amost done.)
We all agree that the Law of Attraction is real, yes? You all teach and talk about this law quite often as do I. If we had a clubhouse together, the sign on the door would read, “Tinker’n with our Thinker’n. Come back later. PS. No close-minded peeps allowed!!
I believe the Law of Attraction works consistently, is fair, doesn’t care about your skin color, shape, size, background, favorite bathrobe color or whether you like jeans or skirts; it works equally for all creatures. It’s solid and scientific at it’s foundation, like the Law of Gravity.
Imagine if we taught that the Law of Gravity only worked 95% of the time. Wouldn’t that mean for 22 out of the 24 hours a day we’d be at the mercy of an inconsistent law? I can see it now. I’ll have to tell my client, “Well, Judy, I hate to tell you but there’s a chance that gravity might stop working while you’re using the toilet tonight at the restuarant. If the restroom has short stall doors, wipe fast!”
If I believed that gravity only worked on me 95% of the time, I can only imagine the anxious I would feel having to wonder when and what would happen to me in life. I think I’d go crazy. Frankly, if Law of Gravity wasn’t consistent 100% of the time, life would suck. And … the movie UP would not be as cute.
Law of Gravity works 100% of the time, as does Law of Attraction. No exceptions.
But how does Law of Attraction work? It’s based on how you feel and you always know how you feel, even if that feeling is just a little bit happy or sad.
Here’s my thesis.
If Law of Attraction is working 100% of the time, not just 95% (and it is), and it’s a law that is based on how we feel (and it is) and we’re aware of how we feel 100% of the time (even if it’s just a 1% level of awareness) then the idea that there is a sub portion of our mind that governs 5% of our results without our control is factually inaccurate.
What is further confusing is the idea that we need to work on changing, improving, or altering our limiting subconscious thinking. Why would we do that when Law of Attraction dictates that whatever we focus on expands? Isn’t there an easier path to our results other than trying to force something to change that hurts while we do it?
If I had a wound, I would not throw salt in it. But it feels like that’s what we’re doing when we suggest students “work on their limiting beliefs”. Maybe they just need a good bleeding, too?
What about just altering our focus of attention? Brendan Bruchard said something similiar to this the other day in a video blog. He talked about throwing out the idea that we need to fix limiting beliefs, that it’s all about what we focus on. We can choose to focus on what’s wrong, or we can choose to focus on what’s right. He had a client who was complaining that she couldn’t change her results because of her subconscious limiting beliefs. His advice? Stop focusing on that because it’s not going to go away and turn your attention (emotional and mental) toward what you want.
Oh, snap. And there is it.
It feels like he’s totally right.
Every thought that has ever been thought is still in existence. Einstein figured this one out for us. So, by virtue of this, we cannot “get rid of bad thoughts”. They are not going to “go” anywhere as energy is neither created or destroyed. You cannot obliterate your sad, doubtful, anxious, fearful, poopy thoughts. Let them just be and gather dust. Instead, think (and feel) about what you DO want.
Every subject is actually two subjects: the thing and the absense of the thing. Health and illness, wealth and poverty, happiness and sadness.
Health is the absense of illness; illness is the absense of health.
Wealth is the absense of poverty; poverty is the absense wealth.
Happiness is the absense of sadness; Sadness is the absense of happiness.
You can only focus on one end of the stick or the other. Do we really think asking people to focus on changing their limiting beliefs (the absence end, the lack end) is the fastest way to create the presense of something? Or might that just be the longer, bumpy road to get where we’re going? Should we use rotary phones when we now have digital?
This is a Universe of inclusion (an attraction based universe which means pulling toward, realizing and rendezvousing with) only. NO EXCEPTIONS. There is no getting around this one. We can believe it, or not, but that doesn’t change the fact that when you think about the thing you do not what you include it in your vibration, your asking, your reality. We say emotionally, “Come to me this thing I do not want!”
The other night my daughter had a belly ache. It was really bothering her. I asked her what she wanted. She said, “I do not want a stomach ache!”
“No,” I said, “that’s what you don’t want. What do you want?”
“I want to feel well?” she asked.
“Yes, you want to feel well.” I replied. “Let’s focus on that. What does wellness feel like to you? Ease? Fun? Satisfaction? We cannot get to well from sick. They are two different roads leading to two different end results.”
This sounds like such a childish thing to do, a “pollyanna” kind of thinking. However, it’s the basis of how we create our realities. Permission to be pollyanna’s given.
Bob, Natalie, Dr. Joe … you do believe we create our realities, don’t you? 100% not just 95%, yes?
This is where the two theories clash—the sub-conscious and the Law of Attraction. If we really do create our own realities, and the Universe is consistent in it’s laws all operating at 100% theshold, then it would stand that we don’t just create 95% of our results. It would mean that we create 100%. It would stand that we don’t actually have a sub portion of our minds, then, that is housing ideas and beliefs that are causing us to have crappy results for even 5% of the time.
I don’t believe the Universe is evil. I don’t believe we were designed as masterful, creative being, without being 100% equipped to work with the obviousness and preciseness of the laws. I don’t believe we came forth only to be able to create at 95% of our capacity.
Having a sub portion of mind would mean that we do not create our full realities. It would indicate that somehow unless you’re in personal development and understand all the mumbo gumbo we teach, people cannot do, be or have everything they want in life … only 95%. That feels kind of screwy to me, even as one who has taught the subconscious mind theory and totally felt the realness of it.
Doing this little bit of fine tuning could free us up, not just those in personal development but in all walks of life, to stop believing there are just some things that are meant to be for us. My daughther was playing music on Spotify last night. In one of the songs, a new release rap song, the artist mentioned his “subconsicous mind”. We use this term … well, mindlessly. We throw it around as an excuse for why we can’t have the life that we want.
I don’t believe the Law of Attraction is anything other than attraction based. A hidden portion of the mind theory leads people to believe that there is a law of insertion, or assertion. That things can be inserted, or asserted, into our lives without our knowledge (even if the insertor, or assertor, is us). This idea violates how natural laws work and it makes us feel sad thinking we don’t really have control.
We do not create things that we do not believe. We don’t always catch our beliefs as they whiz by in our daily conversations and actions, because we’re so used to believing in them, (but we are aware of them) and they—beliefs— are our glass ceiling. Not our boss, or our husband, or the number on the scale, or the neighbors, or the people in our mastermind group, the number of hours you want TV, or the guy on the late night infommercial that said, “Just take this pill and you’ll never have to worry again.” We like to blame these people for our crappy results, just like our sub-conscious beliefs, but they are not why our lives are how they are. Sometimes blame feels better than depression and that’s okay. It’s a step in the right direction no matter what others think of us for being angry. Anger is better than fear on a vibrational scale. It’s movement in the right direction up the emotional scale of resonance.
Someone who earns $25,000 a year will not earn $100,000 a year until (s)he feels worthy of it and shifts her/his belief that it is possible. Someone who believes themselves to be ill, will never be able to create health no matter how many positive affirmations they say a day.
So, my dear friends, my amazing and beloved mentors, I want to thank you for having this conversation with me. I know, it feels crazy to suggest this as we’ve all based our teachings and careers on the fact that we do have a portion of our mind that is sabotaging our good intentions and results. It’s time we stop allowing our clients and students to beat themselves up for a portion of the mind that might not exist as we originally thought.
Maybe today is the day we advance our understanding of the mind in a way that will lead us through the next 60 years … until we realize something else we didn’t see before. I’m betting that it doesn’t take us as long to make the next big discovery. I’m putting my money on 30 years.
Like a rainbow or a sunset, the mind has no percentage divisions and no power of create for us that which we do not believe. The mind is a Self-guided creation, always expanding, and one that follows the explicit instructions of the emotional headquarters, every time. Who’s the shift manager at headquarters? Us. 100% of the time.
Just ask Pixar. They made a whole movie about it called Inside-Out released in summer 2015.
Paying attention to how you feel emotionally is no harder than if you stuck your hand on a hot stove and said, “Ouch! That hurt!” You’d know right away how that felt and it wouldn’t be subconscious.
There is so much love for you here. Thank you for being awesome.
More information on the emotional scale of resonance can be found in my book.