Image: Shutterstock

The Conscious, Unconscious, SuperConscious and Higher Self

In this blog post, I’m sharing some thoughts about the conscious, unconscious, subconscious, SuperConscious, and the Higher Self.

This train of thought was inspired by a group MAP intro session I conducted in my new Meetup group. (If you’re still new to the MAP Method™ and you’d like to know more about it, please see here.)

Which is more powerful: the conscious or the subconscious?

During the group MAP, someone had asked, “Which one is more powerful: the conscious or the subconscious?”  That’s a good question.

Knowing what I know now thanks to MAP, I think I can safely say this. What many of us mean when talking about the subconscious may actually be the unconscious mind. There certainly is a lot of stuff stored there that’s out of reach, affecting us in subtle ways.

Can it affect the conscious mind? Yes.

Does it have more power over the conscious mind? Only if we let it.

What does that mean, “if we let it”?

We are so often given the message that the subconscious is inaccessible… But the problem with that messaging is, it gives us the perception that the subconscious like a black box.  If we have the idea that the subconscious is inaccessible and unknowable, it’s therefore uncontrollable. So that means the subconscious is more powerful than the conscious. Right?

The power of the conscious mind

Well, hang on a minute. Let’s not forget one powerful aspect of our conscious minds: the executive function.

Our executive function has the power to override influences that might come from the unconscious and subconscious minds. It gives us the ability to choose our thoughts. It’s like the command center of our brain.

But if we live our days on autopilot (which most of us do… including me), the executive function goes offline.  When we want it to come back online, it takes more effort to do so.

How can we switch on the power of our executive function, and make it stay online?

Woman Thinking Greta Hoffman
Photo: Greta Hoffman

How to keep our executive function switched on

The short answer is mindfulness. Not in the meditative sense, but to be more aware of what’s in our own mind. This type of mindfulness is called metacognition or meta awareness.

It might sound hard to do, but actually it’s not! Even while reading this article, we can practice metacognition.

First, notice the thoughts, feelings or body sensations that come to us.

Then, discern the reason behind those thoughts, feelings and sensations.  It’s ok if they aren’t 100% clear at first.  The point here is to find an explanation.  When we can’t make sense of what we’re thinking, feeling and sensing, that’s when we start to feel helpless and out of control.

If we practice metacognition in other parts of our daily life, such as while talking with someone, doing a task, or making choices, we can become even more aware of ourselves.

Knowing ourselves better has benefits.  Then we can understand why we chose to do (or not to do) certain things, why we reacted in a certain way to someone, or felt certain emotions when something happened.  That helps us stay centered and more in control.

In fact, metacognition is the key to unlocking our inner black box, so do try it out!

What about the Higher Self (our SuperConscious)? Is that more powerful than the conscious mind?

Especially after having seen what the MAP Method can do, I can confidently say YES!

The Higher Self, or SuperConscious, has access to our inner wisdom as well as the infinite wisdom of the Universe. It also has the ability to communicate with the rest of our mind and teach it to heal itself. It’s quite amazing!

Some might regard the Higher Self as a divine being, separate from who we are.  But in fact, the Higher Self is a version of ourselves that encapsulates who we could potentially be the more spiritually evolved we become.  So it’s actually an extended part of us!

Man Meditating
Photo: Syed Muttayab

How can we connect with our Higher Self?

So how do we connect with our Higher self, the SuperConscious, then?

Incidentally, I was asked the same question by a client a while ago. My suggestion then was this:

1) Get into a quiet state
2) Leave all judgements and analysis at the door
3) Focus on a point in front of you, above you, within you, or visualize an image that represents your Higher Self
4) Ask it a question
5) Wait

The language of the Spirit isn’t the same as our spoken language. It uses different mediums. Besides words, it could be images, feelings, sensations, scents or sounds. We have to be open to the possibility that the messages will come to us in unexpected or, at first glance, unrecognizable forms. Such as through signs from plants or animals. Lyrics of a song or something someone says. Or seemingly coincidental events. And be open to receiving them.

The answer may not come immediately, either. There does seem to be such a thing as divine timing. So while we’re waiting for a reply, trust that our Higher Self is working on it and will get back to us at the right time.

NO answer could also be a sign! Whenever we feel unsure about something, we tend to seek answers and validation from outside. Which seems like a smart thing to do. Yet in doing so, we give up our own agency in a way, and lose faith in our own judgement. By not offering an answer, perhaps the Higher Self is saying, “You’ve got this. Trust yourself.”

(I wrote a blog article related to this a few years ago, so if you feel inclined, do check it out! )

The ego self and Higher Self operate on different levels and both are equally important

What about when we go back to “real life” and our thinking, judging mind kicks in?

Well, this is simply the ego self talking. The one that likes to analyze, plan, prepare, strategize, and make sure we get the outcomes we want. The ego self is there to help us navigate our day-to-day life. It’s concerned with what’s probable, doable and achieveable.

The Higher Self, on the other hand, can see the bigger picture that may not even be visible to our ego self yet. It operates on a completely different scale… we could even call it the quantum scale.  Where it’s brimming with infinite possibilities.

It’s important to realize that one isn’t more or less than the other. Both selves are equally valuable. The ego self keeps us grounded in the practical world and helps us get things done. While the Higher self has its eyes on the bigger picture and guides us in the direction we need to go.

We’re so used to talking with our ego self that we sometimes forget about our Higher self. Or we can’t hear it very well.

When we develop a stronger relationship with our Higher Self, we have a powerful ally in our corner. It can guide us to make decisions and choices that are aligned with us at our core. That helps us dig in and be more resilient in the face of challenges.

We don’t have to feel lost anymore.  And that is very empowering!

I hope these musings offer something to ponder as you go about your daily life! If you have any thoughts, I’d love to hear them.  Please feel free to write to me here.