You have surely heard that positive things happen to positive thinking people, pursuant to the law of attraction. You attract to yourself the things that you constantly think about.
What you may not realize is that it is your subconscious mind the one that allows these things to happen, or not.
Your subconscious –what the Freudians called the unconscious- is like a big archive where every experience you have is stored. All images, sounds, scents, tastes, thoughts, feelings and beliefs are stored there.
But the funny thing is that your subconscious is not only an archive. It also works like a control panel. Ideas that are inconsistent with your subconscious system, are “not believed” and rejected, and therefore not acted upon. Your subconscious has somehow a “veto power” over them.
When people claim that positive thinking does not work for them, they may not be realizing that it is their own subconscious system that is somehow rejecting the positive inputs, because these do not conform to the beliefs that are stored in the subconscious.
Beliefs are powerful and people get very attached to them through their subconscious. These beliefs end up making their way to the image that people subconsciously hold of themselves. So when people desire change, all their past personal stories –learned, believed or experienced- about the infeasibility of something or the lack of it, cling to them.
This is what happens when the energy flow of positive thinking is obstructed, “vetoed” or stopped by the subconscious mind. You may desire, say or think something, but deep down –in your subconscious- you believe the contrary, or believe it is “not possible” or “not feasible” or “not realistic” for you, or that you “do not deserve it”.
Jesus warned us long time ago about the folly of putting a patch of new material upon an old garment. The new material is the positive thinking. The old garment is your system of limiting beliefs, stored in your subconscious mind.
In modern science, Maxwell Maltz realized through his practice that positive thinking cannot be used effectively "as a patch or as a crutch to the same self-image", because "it is literally impossible to really thing about a particular situation, as long as you hold a negative concept of self".
Since we live in the computer era, you can also understand this by comparing your mind to a computer. You may wish to add a new program to it, but if there is something against it stored in your control panel, it will not work. Or your computer may have viruses that will impact the functioning of the new program. The new program is the new goal and the positive thinking. The control panel is your subconscious. The viruses are your limiting beliefs.
Is it therefore valid to conclude that "positive thinking does not work"? No. Positive thinking is your creative energy. It does work. You just have to make sure that you do not have something unconsciously stored in your subconscious mind that works against it. Or worse, that keeps working in a way that makes sure that the same negative, limited, undesirable experiences happen and repeat themselves again and again in your life.
This is so because negative beliefs not only block new positive thinking. Negative, limiting beliefs also keep influencing your behavior and life experiences unless they are detected and overcome. It is like when a scratched vinyl disc keeps playing and playing the same noise.
If you do not change your limiting beliefs, you will keep the same pattern manifesting itself in your reality over and over. You will experience what Arnold Glasgow said when he claimed that the future is just "the past returning through another gate".
But if you change your limiting beliefs, you may stop being a prisoner of your past and become the architect of your future, as Robin S. Sharma advices.
How do you manage to reprogram your subconscious mind to get rid of your limiting beliefs?
There are many methods oriented towards reprogramming your subconscious. Here are some of them:
1. Reinforced positive thinking. Limited positive thinking encounters resistance either from the subconscious or from the rational mind speaking for the subconscious. If you practice positive thinking scarcely, just few minutes a day, the chances of subconscious resistance are high. This is using positive thinking as a patch to your fabric. But if you use it consistently with clear determination, you can succeed, as when you add enough clear water to a dirty recipient until eventually the dirt washes off and the recipient is cleaned by the great and constant amount of clean water.
This can require some heroic determination when your beliefs are deeply rooted, but it can be done. The key is to reinforce your positive thinking with the power of faith regardless of the appearances and persist until you manage to shift your vibration about the situation. How long will that take? It will take the time it takes you to shift your vibration in your personal circumstances. If you abandon your positive thinking in the middle of the road, you will not manage to reprogram your subconscious. But if you persist with faith, your shifted vibration will be successfully stored in your subconscious.
Think of it as when you want to install a new program to your computer and it is taking a long time or even ages to download or to install. If you desist, it will not be installed, but if you persist and wait what it requires, it will be finally installed. Frustration and impatience lead you to give up. Faith and confidence lead you to succeed.
2. Meditation. There are many meditation techniques and guided meditations, but all of them have in common serving as a vehicle to quiet the rational mind, so you can transcend it and access higher states of understanding. When you achieve these calmed, meditative states, you are “in the zone” where positive thinking is more fertile and bypasses the rational mind speaking for the subconscious. Emile Coue understood this when he said that "your suggestions must be made without effort if they are to be effective".
3. Visualization. This is really a tool to add to your meditation. Visualization without meditatively being “in the zone”, might be tantamount to day dreaming, which does not reprogram your subconscious. By contrast, your meditative visualization can successfully reprogram your subconscious if the pictures and images you hold on your mind about yourself are so vivid and emphatic that you feel them as real. When you truly feel them as real, they make an impression upon your subconscious mind.
4. Hypnosis. There is really nothing mysterious about hypnosis. The real purpose of hypnosis, when used correctly, is to help you enter into a state of relaxation (usually the alpha state) that gives you access to your subconscious in order to make positive suggestions to it while your conscious mind remains aware of what goes on. It really works like guided meditations. And in modern times you have an ample menu of hypnosis techniques to choose from when you want to tackle specific problems with this method.
5. Subliminal messages. Subliminal messages, if used correctly, are designed to allow positive affirmations to be received and acted upon by the subconscious mind, bypassing the conscious resistance that often "filters" the positive affirmations through disbelief or negative inner talk. A practical way to use subliminal messages for your personal growth and development is listening to subliminal programs designed to help you overcome specific limiting beliefs. Some of these programs -like my audio program for increasing prosperity and abundance in your life- also use background music with Theta waves in order to allow your subconscious mind to better receive the positive subliminal suggestions. If you do not find the program that suits your own specific needs, you can order a custom made, personalized subliminal audio from me.
Whatever the method you choose, keep in mind that the key is to bypass the rational mind speaking for the subconscious, and that to make an impression upon the latter you have to get to a relaxed state and reach the point where you vividly feel the positive suggestions.