Learning to hone your instincts and unleash your subconscious mind can lead to better decision-making, increased creativity, and a greater sense of self-awareness. With practice and dedication, you can tap into your innate intuition and unleash a powerful force for personal growth and fulfilment.
The subconscious mind is a vast and powerful resource that often goes untapped. It is the storehouse of our deepest beliefs, memories, and experiences, and it influences our thoughts, emotions, and behaviours in profound ways. When we learn to access and harness this power, we can tap into our innate intuition, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. Honing our instincts is a process of developing a deep understanding of ourselves, our values, and our goals.
If you’ve tried manifestation, affirmations or have even explored the Law of Attraction (as espoused by Rhonda Byrne’s bestselling book, The Secret), chances are that you’ve tried your hand at communicating with your subconscious too. This brings us to the question of what the subconscious – a nebulous concept, to most – really is and why it matters so much.
Think of the subconscious as bio-software
Khun Jah, an energy healer and life coach, who works with clients to find energy imbalances in their subconscious minds, says, “The subconscious mind is quite like a bio-software in our body. It’s how we react to everything that happens in our life. A part of this software is what we’re born with; the rest is developed through our lives to enable us to survive.”
Dr Kanan Khatau Chikhal, a psychologist and co-founder of Whole Brain Consulting, believes that only 10 per cent of our brain is used for conscious, critical thinking. She likens the brain to an iceberg, with the conscious mind floating above the surface and the subconscious mind, the much larger chunk, submerged underneath it. This theory was first proposed by eminent psychologist Sigmund Freud in 1945. Experts today believe that it is possible to not just tap into but also re-programme your subconscious mind to improve your overall quality of life.
Connect with the subconscious
With so many of our beliefs, fears and even patterns of behaviour being influenced by the subconscious, accessing the subconscious mind is the first step towards tapping into its power, Dr Chikhal explains. “The influence of the subconscious mind can be far-reaching in ways that most people don’t think about. For instance, I’ve come across a case where the individual’s mother struggled while she was carrying them in the womb. That person has continued to subconsciously hold on to the belief that life is a struggle. Their business never really takes off because of their need to continue struggling.”
She relies on a multi-pronged strategy to help people access their subconscious minds. “The first step is the discovery phase. Ask yourself questions such as: What is limiting me? What is pulling me down? What is not allowing me to grow? At the same time, you must assure yourself that you love and accept yourself unconditionally. Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) can help you get there. Next, work with a therapist to use regression and similar tools to understand the origins of the problem. What most of us don’t realise is that some of us manifest problems in our lives because of our innate need to solve problems. Once you’ve understood your barriers, the next stage involves addressing them. Our subconscious mind typically functions on autopilot. The decision to re-programme it therefore involves a lot of sustained work,” she continues.
Jah adds that releasing the negative emotion associated with a certain memory can free your mind of long-standing fears or negativity and make you live a happier, more content life: “There are two ways to do this. The first is to consciously drive it. Using tools such as NLP, or neuro-linguistic programming. You repeat a mantra every day until, after a while, you start believing in it. This method involves reaching the subconscious mind through the conscious mind. The second technique, which I prefer, is to directly reach your subconscious mind and directly release all the negative emotions or feelings you have about certain life events. It will make you feel better. There are two ways I access the subconscious – the first is using L-rod dowsing.”
An L-rod is a tool that’s typically used in dowsing to detect underground water, minerals, or other hidden objects. It consists of a flexible rod or wire bent into the shape of an “L” and is believed to be able to respond to subtle vibrations or energy fields.
“L-rods respond by opening or closing when asked a question. This lets your subconscious mind directly answer yes or no questions. The other method, which does not involve tools, is applied kinesiology, which uses muscle monitoring (bio feedback) to uncover what may be causing imbalances in the body,” says Khun Jah.
Dr Chikhal points out that tools such as NLP have their limitations: “To draw an analogy from medicine, these techniques are akin to grafting fresh, healthy skin on a festering wound. While the appearance of the wound may improve, the infection will persist and may even worsen,” she warns.
When you find a technique that works for you, however, it can help you to tap into your subconscious mind. The subconscious mind and instinct are closely linked because our subconscious is where our experiences, beliefs, and memories are stored, and it influences our instincts and intuition. Our instincts are automatic, unconscious responses to stimuli, and they are shaped by our subconscious mind. When we rely on our instincts, we are drawing on our subconscious to make quick, intuitive decisions based on our past experiences and beliefs. Learning to trust our instincts can help us make better decisions and navigate the world with greater ease and confidence.
Sharpen your instinct
“Instinct refers to your intuition or gut feeling. It is shaped by your subconscious as a safeguard to protect you from threats and obstacles,” says life coach, Farzana Suri. She recommends meditation as a basic but essential practice to hone your instinct. “It’s only when your mind is stable and in a ‘paused’ state that you can really listen to your internal chatter. As you meditate, focus on what is going on within you instead of outside your body. When you start focusing on your feelings, you develop a better understanding of your body and your mind,” she says.
Additionally, she recommends paying attention to your dreams, even chronicling them via dream journaling, or doodling: “Your dreams are your conscious mind’s conversations with your intuition and your instinct. They may be shrouded with some other story, which has parallels to your own life. At the same time, activities such as doodling and drawing put you in a flow state, where your cognitive mind is quiet and your hunches are heightened.”
Going through these steps requires practice and self-reflection. But put in the effort and, with time and dedication, you may unleash the full potential of your subconscious mind and transform your life in ways you never thought possible.