Not long ago, a client offered an excellent metaphor. They were curious about something we talked about in our session. Curiosity is a great place to be. Curiosity will take one very close to the Charmed Life I write about.
Fascination is better. So is amazement. But those emotions naturally show up as clients create more and more evidence. More and more evidence validating everything I tell them in their Positively Focused sessions. Before they know it, the evidence piles up so high, they find themselves in fascination and amazement. Fascination and amazement turn to wonder not long after that. That’s because when one realizes they are worthy of all they desire, and they see those desires happening, wonder becomes the lens through which they experience life.
But I digress. Let’s get back to that client’s metaphor. It’s really instructive.
Clarity in a metaphor
Here’s what they wrote:
“Just want to make sure I understood…if we think of the barrier between conscious and subconscious as the surface of the ocean with the air being conscious thought and water being subconscious thought, then these little doubts and fears that briefly surface in the conscious mind are like icebergs, with the little bit on top one perceives and the huge mass of it (i.e., the momentum) still lurking below, even after one thinks they got a handle on it. Is this a more-or-less apt metaphor?”
The ice berg metaphor gets used often in describing consciousness. Same goes for oceans. So my client’s metaphor was unsurprising. The metaphor itself is mostly accurate.
But we humans over exaggerate what’s going on in life. We also bring that tendency to examining nonphysical, which “consciousness” is. Often, when we do over exaggerate, we do so in a negative direction. In other words, we catastrophize life.
Language often contributes to the catastrophization. Language is powerful. Words we choose literally shape our experience. You’ll see what I mean by taking a deeper look at my client’s metaphor.
Limits put on the limitless
The words “conscious” and “subconscious”, taken together, offer an example of how language can limit experience. When people use these words, they create two things out of something that actually is one thing. It seems there’s a “conscious” part of us. It’s that part of our awareness we’re aware of it. We’re conscious of it. Then there’s the “subconscious” part. We’re aware we have it. But we apparently can’t consciously access it.
So there’s a part of us we can access. And there’s a part we can’t. Between those two, apparently, a barrier exists. Our consciousness cannot pierce that barrier, which is what keeps the “sub” in subconscious.
But there is no actual separation between what people call “conscious” and “subconscious”. There is no barrier between the two. And there really isn’t even “two”. What does exist is our ability perceive all of what’s there, or not. Inability to perceive doesn’t necessarily mean a barrier blocks our ability to perceive. Inability to perceive only means we can’t perceive. We’re not able to. That’s not the same as “cannot”.
In Positively Focused sessions, clients learn to reunite their “conscious” and “subconscious”. Again, they were never separate to begin with. But our beliefs impose a division that’s not there. In doing so those beliefs limit what’s possible.
In our sessions, clients gradually realize everything is possible. Self-imposed limitations relax then. When that happens, one’s human awareness allows more and more, deeper, conscious awareness. This is why a Positively Focused practice includes dreamwork. We train our awareness to expand through to deeper levels of that awareness.
The results are profound.
Making life more serious than it is
Of course, expanding, deepening awareness takes place in physical too. It’s what causes clients to become more bold about life. We become more daring. More authentic. Which is something our Broader Perspective wants. Because of that, we feel a tremendous sense of adventure about life. Adventure and joy, pleasure and fun richly colors our life.
Self-imposed limits can block deeper self-awareness. After all, something existing in the “subconscious” implies we can’t access it. But nothing exists beyond our access. If we can ask the question, we can know the answer. That opens profound implications for self-awareness.
The other interesting thing about my client’s metaphor is it introduces drama and ominousness to the affair. That “huge mass” lurking beyond our perceptions stands ready to upend our plans. And we can’t access it so what do we do?
The reality is, nothing like that is happening. Seriousness, drama, and dire consequences are human constructs. Nothing “serious” happens in our lives. Even when it looks like it is, that’s our interpretation. And any interpretation can change. That’s what clients learn. And when they do, their life gets way better.
That’s why I use “Belief Constellation” instead of common metaphors explaining consciousness. For, as with constellations in the sky, our consciousness and everything in it is all visible…if we’re willing to connect the dots between feelings and thoughts, then other thoughts connected to that, and then other thoughts connected to that, then other thoughts connected…etc. Nothing is hidden from us. It’s all available to see, revel in, then create more of what we want.
But enjoying that means learning how to do it deliberately and consciously. Including how we speak about our experience.
Want to know more? Let’s talk.