Cristina Popovici

The importance of working with the Subconscious and the Unconscious

Posted by Cristina Popovici Hypnotherapist Over 1 Year Ago

In this article I will explain the importance of working with the subconscious and the unconscious in therapy and why this creates fast, lasting changes versus working with the conscious mind which is a long process, filled with resistance, that creates temporary changes. 

We know that working with the self and changing the 'Self-Concept' is what creates changes in thoughts, emotions, behaviour and, ultimately, in our external reality. Many therapists and coaches center their work around changing the Self-Concept. However, there are many limitations when it comes to coaching and Counselling as solo therapeutic tools because they only work with the conscious mind. And most of our 'Self-Concept' is unconscious. The very thing we try to work on is filled with unconscious trauma, limiting beliefs, toxic emotions and negative behavioural patterns. 

Let's say someone never felt good about their body and they feel unattractive. In coaching, we might strive to change that thought pattern and make the person think 'I am beautiful', 'I value myself', 'I am worthy of being valued'. But this in itself is not enough as long as this negative Self-Concept has been created by childhood trauma. The trauma has been stored in the subconscious and the unconscious and will continue to 'fight' the conscious mind which is trying to change something. 

The conscious mind is the 'critic', the 'rational thinker', the 'decision-maker'. Making the decision to change something will not automatically change things, but it is the first step. However, we might try to take the conscious mind in the right direction, but if the unconscious resists, we will not feel any real change or it will feel fake and forced. We will start to wonder why we are not feeling different or why there is so much resistance to the conscious process of change. This is why working with just the conscious mind has many limitations. 

Therapies like clinical hypnosis, timeline intervention or EMDR work with the subconscious and the unconscious to heal and change your Self-Concept from the root of the problem. When trauma is released from the unconscious, everything changes. The conscious pattern of our thinking is also influenced by our subconscious and unconscious. This is why real, lasting changes in the Self happen at the level of the subconscious and the unconscious. 

We might say 'I am worthy of being loved' and look in the mirror every day to find positive traits, but deep, down, we might still not believe this. Also, when working with the conscious mind in coaching and Counselling, many times we might doubt the process, doubt ourselves or the therapist and we might not always be responsive to the feedback given or have resistance to applying it. When working with our unconscious parts, we bypass the conscious mind, the 'critical thinker', so our own doubts and thoughts don't get in the way of Healing. When properly instructed, the unconscious makes the changes by itself, in an unconscious manner, without you having to think of 'how' or 'why' or 'when'.

This is why I believe that coaching in itself is limited and that talking therapies should almost always be combined with a deeper work of releasing trauma and negative beliefs from the subconscious and the unconscious. This is what truly transforms the 'Self-Concept' of a person and what creates long-lasting changes in the way that they see life and how they feel about different aspects of it and of themselves. Working with the conscious mind should always be paired with integrating and Healing the unconscious parts of the self.