Auto-suggestion works by way of the same principles that affirmations do as a form of guided meditation or subliminal conditioning. Our Higher Soul acts to operate both the subconscious and conscious aspects of the mind to both self-create and create our perception of the outer world. Like all entities and natural forces in the universe, the mind is dual in nature as masculine (conscious) and feminine (subconscious) aspects of the same thing, and work together in a harmonious way to create itself, others, and the world at large, all of which result from a form of self-perception. The brain, like the mind that operates and creates through it, is also dual in nature, where the conscious aspect of the mind works through the large brain as the cerebrum, which is the grey matter in the front of the head, and the subconscious works through the small brain or cerebellum, also called the reptilian brain, located in the back of the head attached directly to the brain stem and spinal cord. A further division as symmetry takes place through the polar aspects of the brain known as the “right” (feminine) and “left” (masculine) hemispheres, which again, perform different functions in creating a coherent experience of reality.
These dual aspects of the brain, like the dual aspects of the mind, act together to create a “whole self” or entity, while playing different roles, speaking different languages, performing different functions, and usually being completely unaware of each other because whenever one is active, the other one is passive. The conscious mind is secretly being run by the subconscious mind which forms our personality, formative conditioning, and habitual states and tendencies, and is what forms the basis for all of our outer perceptions. The conscious mind is what we experience as our normal or “waking” consciousness. When we’re awake we’re aware of our “self” and the outer world, whereas the subconscious is our most basic “being” that produces and regulates all natural biological functions of our body, all automatic and habitual behaviors, perceptions, and tendencies, and is emotionally driven and primarily “instinctual” in nature.
The subconscious mind is the primal mind that we share with the animal kingdom and all of Nature, and is what acts to produce and govern the entire material plane through active expression of “memory” of some kind, whether actual or simulated, that provide it with a thematic template or holographic, 3-D blueprint for organizing matter into interactive patterns as dynamic relationships. All natural and automatic behavior, as well as mood, emotional states and fundamental perceptions are produced and maintained by the subconscious in an automatic fashion as the means of creating reality in a consistent and congruent manner. The mind operates out of a “model” as our mental paradigm that serves to create on all levels of the material world simultaneously.
In order to change any aspect of our material reality, we have to work through this mental model and change ourselves first. All outer perception is a direct reflection and projection of our inner, self-perception. We use the same model to create and perceive ourselves as we do to create and perceive others and the world in general. So all transformation comes by way of working on ourselves to alter and modify our mental paradigm as our “model of the world”. We do this naturally all the time by readily accepting and taking in information of some kind that’s compatible with our model and by integrating it, use it to evolve and update our model. We’re constantly changing and becoming through what is largely an unconscious and natural process of programming our own mind by how we feel, think, imagine and fantasize, and through the perceptions, emotional states and actions they act together to naturally produce.
We are all equipped with the means for self-creating, and while we’re always involved in doing so in an unconscious and automatic way, we can also work by way of this same natural process to deliberately transform, grow, and develop ourselves as the means of intentionally creating ourselves and our experience of life. Our conscious and subconscious minds are designed to work together in a harmonious manner to create a unified self and perception of the outer world, but first we have to learn and work by way of the principles involved. The mind and body, like all creative forces in the universe, operate according to principles, and in order to create in a conscious and deliberate manner we have to work by way of those same principles. Whenever we fail to recognize the laws working in any situation, and we attempt to work outside of or in contradiction to laws, we only end up working against ourselves by posing one aspect of ourselves against the other as adversaries and opponents.
The subconscious exists as the polar, yet complementary opposite of the conscious mind. This means one is produced or exists as the direct reflection of the other. The driving impulse of everything that’s undesirable to us, such as passions, shortcomings, bad traits, and weaknesses of various sorts, has its source in the subconscious. The driving force behind everything we don’t want to do and don’t wish for, lies in the subconscious, and so it’s here that it needs to be transformed. The conscious mind, which is the “I” as the self-aware, thinking, willful and discriminating mind has the ability through reason to “decide” and choose “how it wants to be”, is often directly opposed by and therefore over ruled by the subconscious, whose only directive is to maintain the status quo through a form of “self-preservation” as established and well maintained emotional states, habits, and tendencies.
The subconscious, when not worked with properly, tends to be ill-disposed towards and acts to contradict and sabotage our conscious decisions and takes control of our will through passions and emotions that keep us doing the very things we don’t want to do, and creating ourselves and our life out of them as a result. Because the subconscious is the aspect of our mind that forms and gives birth to the material world, we have to not only render it harmless in order to achieve our goals, but we have to convince it to help us realize our wishes and partner with the conscious mind as the powerful ally that it is. In order to do this we have to look at what acts as a communication barrier between them, and learn the art of translating conscious goals into the language of the subconscious.
The conscious, self-aware, thinking mind, tends to be abstract and objective in nature, and exists fully within “time and space”, where it spends the better part of its time thinking about the past and future, and wastes it’s creative ability replaying memories of some kind over and over as the “means” of creating the same type of things in the present, reinforcing and strengthening them while setting the basis for creating more of the same thing in the future. The conscious mind is easily distracted and engages willingly in meaningless activities as a way of passing time and entertaining itself, and spends most of its time telling itself stories about things as fantasies that are born out of emotional states. It’s easily seduced by the emotional states of the subconscious and dwells endlessly in the mood or state of mind produced by its own illusions, usually without ever realizing that’s what’s actually happening. Thought and emotion are produced by each other, and work together to form all of our memories and fantasies. Memory and emotion are always directly connected and are what serve as the basis for instinct and creating out of an unconscious state where our thoughts are determined and driven by our emotions as primal forces that govern the entire physical plane.
This process, being dual and complementary in nature, works both ways, and whatever we dwell in and think about we form an emotional response to, and so we have the ability to actually direct and determine our emotional state through what we focus on and think about. Thought and emotion are always married to each other within the material plane, where one automatically produces and determines the other, and together they produce the “self” and the material reality of self-perception as their offspring. All creation and transformation involves bringing these two aspects into harmony with each other as a unified and coherent idea.
The subconscious mind is the “unconscious” aspect of the mind in the sense that it fully operates to produce all instinctual, natural, and automatic activities and behaviors without our direct awareness or needing to think about them. It exists outside of time and space, and is always fully present and active in every moment. It never rests like the conscious mind, and even while the conscious mind sleeps it runs all of our biological processes and continues to produce reality through our dream states. It’s our “body consciousness” and is active and operating from the moment of conception to the moment of death. It’s emotionally driven through impulses, and communicates emotionally with everything around it, and while lacking a “will” like the conscious mind, operates and creates reality based on memory of some form. It’s creative in nature in terms of producing the entire material reality of the body, personality, natural behaviors, and the outer reality of perception, all of which are connected by and share in the same subconscious mind as the “collective unconscious”, yet lacks innovation, individuality, and being able to create something new and unique that it doesn’t have a model, pattern, or memory for.
All transformation and change in the material sense requires time and space in order to be produced and realized, because all newness is produced as an alteration of what already exists and evolves naturally out of an existing idea. If we set a goal for achieving something as a “future event”, something we’re “going to do”, or are “trying to do”, we program the subconscious mind with the idea of “going to” or “trying to”, and it creates the constant experience of trying without achieving. It’ll place constant obstacle directly or indirectly in our path as a form of self-sabotage or simply as the means of maintaining what has already been established. The subconscious, if not directed and given a pattern for what to create as a current reality and direct experience (without the passing of time), will nearly always succeed in overcoming us and causing us to fail, especially when willpower is under developed and weak, or we allow our emotional states to dictate what we focus on and think about.
The conscious, willful mind has the ability to impregnate the subconscious mind with a wish or goal that it will then use to systematically produce a material reality, but it has to deliver it through the shared medium of the imagination as an actual or already present experience by withdrawing the notion of time and space, and creating it as a form of virtual simulation or memory. The subconscious mind, which needs to be given the pattern (seed) for creating a material reality, doesn’t know the difference between an actual memory and an imagined one, because they’re both produced by the same means through the faculty of the imagination. Even actual experiences are turned into memories and “replayed” over and over “through” the imagination, which is what keeps the past alive in the present forming a consistent experience of reality. We have to create our wish as if it’s already real and happening in the present moment as a full sensory experience. When we seed the subconscious with a memory of the reality we want it to produce, we coordinate and align the two minds with the same idea. The subconscious produces it and the conscious mind perceives it.
Auto-suggestion is a very basic “self-programming process” for modifying our mental paradigm through the incorporation of new information as an experience that becomes a part of its structural memory. The only way we ever “learn and grow” (evolve) is through experience of some kind that forms the memory as the perceptual programs that make up our infrastructure. We set a goal as a wish or desire for creating as an idea stated in the present tense, and then imagine it repeatedly and intensely in sensory terms as an actual experience of it. All memory, whether considered actual or self-produced, is created in the faculty of the imagination, where it’s then replayed as a means of providing the means for creating a consistent version of reality. The subconscious is thematic, allegorical, and metaphorical in nature, which means it’ll take an imaginary experience of reality and use it as an “archetypal idea” and create it in many different ways and on several different scales and levels simultaneously. It doesn’t need exact instructions or the actual situation in terms of details and absolutes, but only the symbolic idea of it as a theme, that it will then use to create more of the same type of experiences based on whatever environment, circumstances, or situations it’s operating in or based on what’s available as elements for creating the same type of idea in its immediate environment.
Formulating your Suggestion / Affirmation
Understanding the nature and relationship between the conscious and subconscious mind gives us distinct clues for how to structure the words or phrase used for the suggestion. The suggestion must always be present tense and spoken as a form of command, directive, or order (willfully as if it’s a fact). They must be stated as “I am” and NOT as “I will”. Nowhere in the statement do you ever involve what you “don’t want”. The subconscious doesn’t know how to process negatives and doesn’t operate by being told what “not to do”, but rather by being told what to do as a picture in the mind’s eye, because it speaks the language of images and symbols and creates whatever it imagines. The words spoken serve to form the image or reality in the imagination as the meaning of the words.
All wishes can only be for yourself and developing your character, and can’t involve other people or anything that’s outside of your control or that will require the will of others in order to accomplish. They should always involve a form of self-creation and provide the means for developing your own character or transform bad habits and tendencies or negative traits into positive and beneficial ones. You should start by identifying what you want to eliminate or change, and what it is you want to produce in their place. All change is really transformation of one idea into another one. Whatever idea you have a desire to create must be “believable” and not too far out of range from where you’re currently at. Drastic changes hardly ever come about in a natural and gradual way. All changes should be undertaken through a gradual step-by-step process as a logical progression rather than a giant leap from one extreme to another. These rules must be adhered to at all times in order to achieve success.
As you speak the wish in an authoritative manner to yourself, you picture it in your mind as an actual reality. You shape it and present it to yourself as if it’s real and you’re “in” the experience of it. You create a feeling and experience of yourself “being that way” by enhancing the sensory nature of it to create it as if it’s actually happening, and elicit the emotional state that’s a natural correspondence to it. Create it in your mind’s eye in a way that produces very positive and compelling emotions. Run this through your mind several times as you repeat the affirmation, until you get it just the way you want to experience it, then replay the perfected version several times in order to stabilize it as an actual memory that can be recalled at will.
Building it into the Muscle
Because the subconscious mind creates by way of repeating memories as thematic patterns over and over in a consistent and routine way, we have to replay our imagined, emotionally intense wish repeatedly over a period of time until it becomes automatic as a normal way of being. All habits require a time-frame of consistent replication in order to become permanent as a natural way of being and perceiving. The same principle is true for transforming habits. The number of times required and duration of imagining is 40 times per session. Four is the number of material reality that naturally progresses from three, which is the number of the creative imagination. This is why all processes that work to transform habits of any kind is 6 weeks (42 days) in duration, and why 21 days (past the half way mark) is the time required to establish one idea or routine in place of another. Anything practiced for 21 days becomes easy to do, and once practiced for 40 days becomes established as a new habit and we do it automatically through natural behaviors where intention, willpower and effort are no longer required.
An easy method of counting the number of times you’re repeating your affirmations without being distracted by having to think about it, is to create a string of 40 beads, or tie 40 knots in string, then, as you repeat it, count using the beads by moving from one to the next. Once you’ve repeated it to yourself 40 times while imagining it, you can consider a single session complete. You want to practice affirmations two to three times a day for 40 days, after which time your wish should be accomplished. Concentrate all of your effort on only one affirmation at a time and don’t move on to the next until you’ve accomplished it. The key to “mind over matter” is concentration without distraction or spreading yourself to thin by scattering and dispersing intentions.
Best Time of Day for Auto-Suggestion
There are two times of the day when we are in a natural hypnotic state of having both the conscious and subconscious active at the same time as a transition from a waking to sleeping state, and that’s when we fall asleep at night, and when we wake first thing in the morning. Do this exercise right before falling asleep in a soft whisper or simply in your thoughts. Every time you repeat, move your fingers to another bead, until you’ve repeated it 40 times. As you say or think the idea, imagine or visualize it as if your wish has already become a reality. Create it in your mind in such a way that you’re thoroughly convinced and believe it.
If you reach the end of your beads and you’re still not tired, continue thinking about it into your sleeping state. The object is to take the idea with you from your waking state to your sleeping state, then in the morning from your dream state to your waking state, impregnating the subconscious and coordinating the two states to the fulfillment of the same idea. If you fall asleep before reaching the end of your beads, the purpose will still be achieved. If you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t go back to sleep, repeat the suggestions until you fall asleep. Any idea that we’re thinking about as we fall asleep, we program our subconscious mind with.
What Type of Wishes can be Fulfilled
It’s very important to realize which wishes can be realized and which ones can’t. At no point should we attempt to exercise or project our will onto others in an attempt to change or control them somehow. Only the wishes that concern the spirit, soul, and body of the individual can be realized. Ones that involve ennobling the character, transforming negative traits to positive ones, combating weaknesses, bringing dis-harmonies back into balance, attaining good health, activating and developing latent potential and abilities, transforming bad habits, and so on. Wishes that have nothing to do with one’s personality, that involve others to fulfill, those which are designed for acquiring material possessions, or producing group events, can’t be realized. The higher soul, which is the creative aspect that governs only itself in the lower regions of the material plane only goal and true ability, is to “create itself”, and as a result create its experience of reality. As we change, others and the world around us changes accordingly through our perception of them.
Process as a Practice:
- Decide what you want to transform about yourself, and what it is you want to create in its place.
- State it in positive terms as “what you want”, and not as what you don’t want.
- Structure the phrase as a command, directive, or order that’s “authoritative and firm”, much like a parent, yet friendly and compassionate.
- State it in present tense as if it’s already real and happening – “I am feeling better and better every day”, “I am healthy”, “I am confident and self-assured”, “I am a non-smoker”, and so on.
- As you say it to yourself, form it in your imagination as if it’s already real and true as an “experience” of it.
- Enhance and intensify it in sensory terms – what are you seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting, smelling, and telling yourself about it?
- Create it in a way that invokes positive emotions in response to it that are very compelling in nature.
- Repeat your affirmation at least 40 times each time you practice while counting with beads or knots so you won’t be distracted by having to think about it.
- Practice at least twice a day, preferably before going to sleep and immediately after waking up.
- Practice the same affirmation repeatedly for 40 days.
- Only work on one affirmation at a time and stay with it until it’s achieved in a satisfactory manner before moving on to the next one.
Dr. Linda Gadbois
Integrative Mind-Body Health Consultant and Spiritual Mentor