Have you ever tried to lose weight? Maintain an exercise regimen? Do anything that needs commitment? You start on the path and it feels good at first, but then it becomes tough to stick with it, and often easy to go back to our old routines. We consciously want to be healthy, but our subconscious self senses a danger when there is an alteration in behavior. We are comfortable in our usual routine. Our amygdala, which is a primitive area of the brain, warns us that we are outside of this comfort zone.
So how can we “re-train” and “teach” our sub-conscious not to signal us to danger? I have personally tried some techniques you may find useful.
The following is a list of simple, everyday things you can try:
- Sit and meditate for about 5-10 minutes each day. What this means is close your eyes and breathe in and out and let your mind wander. Imagine anything you want and let it be anything you want. This will allow you to be in a state of calm (although when you begin, your mind may not be), and you will be more mindful that you have power and strength.
- Try the Emotional Freedom Technique or EFT. This works on meridian points and attenuates the amygdala response.
- Look at your diet and see if you can eliminate stimulant type foods such as sugar and caffeine. These increase your “fight or flight” hormones.
- Exercise, even if it is just a brisk walk a couple times a week. It has been shown that this releases endorphins, improving your sense of well-being.
Of course, this list is only a beginning. Empower yourself by looking up other ways to train your subconscious. Our reactions are rooted in biochemistry with substances called neurotransmitters that affect our emotions. Many medications work to alter the amount of substances such as dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin. However, you can increase these by following a smart diet and taking supplements needed to manufacture the neurotransmitters you need. Another post will explain this in more detail.
Do you have any other practices that can re-condition the subconscious to unblock the anxiety that prevents us from keeping on track with your goal?