Performance 6 min read

What Is Subconsciousness? How Can Understanding It Improve Our Lives?

by Mindvalley November 23, 2018

Have you ever driven home without remembering the actual journey? Let’s learn more about subconsciousness to understand why this happens.

Psychologists and researchers rave about the power of the subconscious. But it’s only recently that the subject has become an area of interest among the public.

The power of the subconscious has initiated a modern movement of introspection. People want to learn how to harness the power of their subconscious minds.

If you’re interested in unlocking the potential of your subconsciousness, it’s best to start with the basics.

So, what exactly is the subconscious mind?​

What Is The Subconscious Mind?


American neurologist, Dr. Marcus Raichle, explains that the subconscious mind is what conducts autopilot thinking. There are times during the day when our conscious minds switch off. When we sleep or daydream, we’re less aware of our surroundings. We go on autopilot.

But even when we’re on autopilot, we continue to register information within the brain. The sounds you hear, the scents you inhale, and the vibrations you feel are all registered in your subconscious mind.

So, now you know what the subconscious mind is. But why does it matter? And how does the subconscious manifest in reality?

subconscious thinking

How subconsciousness surfaces in the day to day

The subconscious mind guides every reaction that seems impulsive or sudden. Yelled at a colleague? Feeling low for no apparent reason? These are all signs of subconscious activity.

Your mind subconsciously stores all the subtle sensory information from your day to day experiences. When you act on impulse, this is often the subconscious mind at work.

Your response to your colleague may have been a result of repressed anger caused by an event that occurred earlier in the day. You may have subdued your reaction then, only to subconsciously release it during a conversation with your colleague.

If you find yourself lashing out more often than not, there is something you can do to alleviate the pressure. Becoming more aware of your subconscious activity can help you avoid impulsive, hurtful behavior in the future.

Is subconsciousness a word?

It sure is! The word subconsciousness refers to the state of not being wholly conscious, when your conscious mind is at rest. 50-60% of your mental processes consist of subconscious activity, which applies to any activity outside active conscious awareness.

The subconscious plays a crucial role in shaping personality, behavior, and character. It is the storehouse of memories, experiences, and values within the mind.

Most people suffer from lack of productivity because of their subconsciousness. However, the subconscious can be trained with the help of mindfulness meditation to become more aware of the present moment.

All behavior is belief driven. And we need to understand how our minds work so we can work our minds better.

— Jim Kwik, Author of Mindvalley’s Superbrain Program

What is an example of subconscious behavior?

Have you ever felt suddenly and inexplicably anxious when meeting someone for the first time? This is the effect of the subconscious mind.

How about your physical response when an attractive person walks into the room? Pay attention next time and you’ll notice how your posture and disposition changes in the presence of someone you find attractive.

Here’s another classic example of the subconscious at work: stress eating. Anxiety is a very normal reaction to daily stressors, but most people don’t have effective strategies for dealing with stress. Stress-eating is a classic example of how your subconscious mind can take the wheel.

subconscious mind

Do dreams come from the subconscious mind?

Are you conscious when you’re asleep? Well, this depends on what stage of sleep you’re in.

In the deepest stage of sleep, your conscious mind is completely at rest. You become entirely unaware of what’s occurring in your immediate environment.

This is when your subconsciousness takes over. It maintains your breathing, bodily functions, and everything else required to keep you alive.

The subconscious mind never rests. It may be dormant throughout the day, but at night when you’re asleep, the subconscious becomes more active. Your dreams are nothing but a manifestation of accumulated subconscious thoughts.

That’s how nightmares are born. Ever watched a horror movie only to wake up later that night screaming? Now you know that there exists a real, logical connection between the two events.  

So, can you control your dreams? Absolutely. And that’s because you have the power to reprogram your subconscious mind.

Your subconscious thoughts and ideas are inspired by the books you read, the movies you watch, and the people you meet.

So, pay attention to what you feed your mind, because it’ll shape your dreams and eventually — your reality.


Do you have trouble remembering names?

Maybe you struggle to remember important dates or even basic facts and figures you need for a presentation?

If you do, don’t worry - it’s a common problem.

But what’s also common is the myth that some people are just born with good or photographic memory, while the rest of us just have to struggle.

The truth is, memory is just like a muscle - you can train it to be stronger.

Whether you’re a working professional looking to learn new skills, a student cramming for exams, or even just a senior who’s looking to stay sharp - there are techniques you can do to actively and permanently improve your memory.

If You’d Like To Tap Into This Secret Power You Didn’t Know You Have…Then Join Jim Kwik, Peak Performance Expert And Memory Guru, In This FREE Masterclass


From it, you’ll also learn:

The biggest lie we’ve all been told about our brainsthat’s holding us back from our potential. Contrary to conventional wisdom, your memory actually isn’t fixed. Once you realize how much control you have, you’ll begin to discover what you’re truly capable of.

10 powerful mental hacks you can apply to unlock your inner super learner. Small tweaks in these areas could make the difference between being someone who’s forgetful, to someone who has near-perfect memory.

A powerful memorization technique you can use in any situation. You’ll be able to deliver a speech without having to use your notes, and even remember your entire grocery list without having to write it down!

Register Now To Discover Powerful Hacks To Unlock Your Superbrain (Feel the results in 1 hour)

What is your experience with subconscious behaviors? Let us know in the comments below!

by Mindvalley
Mindvalley is creating a global school that delivers transformational education for all ages. Powered by community. Fueled by fun. We are dedicated to ensuring that humans live happier, healthier, and more fulfilled lives by plugging in the gaps that conventional education failed to teach us. We do this by organising real-world events around the world and producing world-class quality programmes in several areas of transformation, including mind, body, and performance.

Related Articles