I Know How the Subconscious Mind Works thanks to my Toothbrush

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In my twenties, I finally decided that it was time to ask for help. I was way far from where I am today. I was lost and unmanageable. Those were dark years in my family. I feel now very sorry for what my parents had to face because of my behaviour. But what I realised then, was that not everything was my fault. Honestly, I’m not here to write about responsibility, guilt or judgement today. I would like to share with you how I understood the subconscious mind.

At that time, I was not very much into psychology but it was crystal clear in my mind that I could not handle myself. I went to three different doctors before meeting my “angel“. That man was an angel to me because his honesty, transparency, and knowledge had been the first light in the darkness I was living in. All I remember about the first three months is me crying and crying, at that moment the only urgent need I had was focused on getting out all the s**t I had inside. After that, I was ready to listen and to understand.

I’ve always been kind of curious. I’m the type of person who you cannot say “do this” to without providing an explanation about the reason behind it. My logic forces me to always have a clear motivation behind an action.

Somehow, one day I arrived at the point where my “angel” explained to me that the brain has automatic mechanisms. He said that I am used to reacting to situations without consciously thinking because the mind activates automatic responses to outside stimuli. In the simplest way, I’ll try to explain to you how the brain functions:

Every thought that we produce is the result of the work of neurons. A neuron is a nerve cell that gathers and transmits electro-chemical signals. The more we repeat a thought, the more neurons link themselves, creating what is called a strong stable synapsis connection. The result of this strong association of nerve cells is a habit, which is the tendency for something which is done very frequently to become automatic.

Basically, my brain had become accustomed to responding to outside stimuli by using the same pattern even if I was willing to change. I was aggressive, disrespectful, selfish but I did not see myself this way, because habits took over myself without me fully realising it was happening. I was so used to being like that that I was unconscious.

My “angel” suggested I make myself more present in the moment – he was sure I could find the tricky mechanism!

It was very difficult to understand the process, but I am a hard thinker. So I began to become more aware of my behaviour. What made me profoundly conscious of the mechanism was not one of the usual altercations with my parents, but something that happened on an “easy” morning.

That morning I woke up, I had breakfast, and then I went to the bathroom. I washed my face, brushed my hair, then I took my toothbrush and opened the drawer to take out the toothpaste. But there was no toothpaste anymore because I’d finished it the day before. The previous night, I had thrown away the empty box and thought that the next day I should go to the supermarket to buy a new one. Suddenly, something in my mind clicked and a bright light overwhelmed my entire being. I was so excited! I knew the toothpaste was finished, I knew that I had to go to the store in order to replace it, but I did the action of opening the drawer without thinking, so it was just a subconscious habit.

Modern neuroscience explains the functioning of the brain. Knowing how it works, it provides us with the tools to make changes. To become who I am today cost me a lot of effort, struggle, time, tears, and sacrifice. It has been an incredibly hard journey because I had to set up my mind, to disconnect all the old synapses, and to recreate new ones.

What I learned later was that a conscious thought is, in terms of energy, much more powerful than any subconscious thought. This means that we all have the power to improve ourselves, we can all become a better version of ourselves but I cannot assure you that it is going to be easy. What I’ve understood in my life’s experience is that easy ways do not take you far, they get you stuck in situations and do not allow you to evolve.

I am the creator of my own life, what I think defines the person who I am. That’s why it is so important to think properly. Once a dear friend of mine told me:

When you realise you are producing bad thoughts, thoughts in low frequency, stop yourself and come back to the present. While you are in the present moment you must consciously think the opposite of the bad, because the opposite is the good!

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