Friday, January 14, 2011

Our Conscious and Unconscious Mind

Our mind consists of two distinct parts – our conscious and unconscious.

Our conscious mind houses our critical, analytical thoughts. It can hold only 7 chunks of information at any moment.

Our unconscious mind houses our beliefs, values, attitudes, emotions and memories, and controls our vital body functions. Our unconscious mind can hold an infinite amount of information.

Based on the amount of information it can hold, our conscious mind is like an "ant" while our unconscious mind is like an “elephant”. Vince Poscente uses this metaphor in his book The Ant and the Elephant, and in his trainings.

While we are aware of our conscious mind which is but a tiny ant, most of us are oblivious to our unconscious mind though it is big as an elephant.

Imagine a tiny ant on the back of a massive elephant. It doesn’t matter how hard the ant crawls east, if the elephant he rides on walks in the opposite direction, the ant will end up even farther west than his starting point.

Likewise, we will find ourselves further from our goals if our conscious and unconscious minds move in different directions.

Fortunately, we have tools that help us align our elephant with the intentions of our ant.

The Hero’s Journey pattern is a powerful tool that will help your ant tame your elephant.

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