How both can show up in the present and affect the ways you think, feel and behave.
Do you ever experience anxiety that seems to be there without an apparent reason?
I had a client who was experiencing anxiety all week, but could not tell me the cause or source of the anxiety. The consequence was she binged on a variety of snack foods to try and soothe the anxious feeling. She was angry with herself and distressed by her behavior.
We used Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) to literally “tap” into her subconscious, and what came to the surface was a memory from when she was five years old, which she realized was the moment of onset of her lifetime struggle with anxiety.
She was really surprised. “I can’t believe that memory came up, I didn’t even remember it,” she said. She thought that because this experience was in the past that it wasn’t affecting her in the present.
That is the power of the subconscious mind, which is so much stronger than the conscious mind and is often running the show of how you think, feel and behave.
Most of us aren’t aware of just how much the subconscious mind affects us. I didn’t either. Not until I started doing my own inner-healing work and realized how much of my past was still affecting how I felt and behaved in the present.
I hear it over and over again: “That was so long ago. It’s not affecting me anymore.” Are you sure?
Here’s a new way to think about these memories and painful experiences of our past: Imagine them to be thorns that gets stuck in your skin and hurt you.
If you don’t touch the thorn and just try to ignore it and move on, you’ll feel fine until someone goes to hug you and presses into that thorn. Suddenly, you get triggered and re-experience all that pain again, simply because you never actually removed the thorn in your side.
Imagine over your lifetime all of the thorns that you may still have stuck in you from when you tried to move forward without fully processing and releasing the emotions experienced from those events.
We get triggered all the time outside of our conscious awareness.
The subconscious mind is a library that records all of your experiences and the sensory aspects of those experiences, such as what you saw, smelled, heard, and felt. It uses that information to make predictions about the future so it can protect you. If something was dangerous or if someone hurt you, your brain wants to remember that information to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. Your brain wants to keep you safe.
Unfortunately, what is designed to keep you safe as a child can contribute to unwanted triggers and feelings as an adult. If your mind comes across someone who looks, sounds, smells, etc. like a person who harmed you in the past, then it’s possible to be flooded with emotions of fear or anxiety associated with them without being able to consciously recognize what is happening internally. All you know is you’re suddenly having urges to cope and self-soothe in unhealthy ways, such as eating, drinking or smoking.
Changing Our Programming
The good news is that you’re not powerless to change subconscious programming and past experiences that leave you vulnerable to triggers. With the right tools, help and support, you can bring to light the things that are affecting you mentally, physically and emotionally. You can make the unconscious conscious, positioning you to make positive improvements to the programming you are operating from.
There are lots of modalities that can help you to reprogram the mind and release repressed emotions. My chosen modality is Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT).
I use EFT to help you access the wisdom of your mind and body and facilitate processing, like the releasing of repressed emotions and the reprogramming the subconscious, so you can begin to experience freedom from the symptoms that have been ruling your life.