In every moment, your subconscious is referring to the data it holds – data that dictates who you are, how the world around you works, what’s right and wrong, and how best to survive. This data is, interestingly, not necessarily true, objective fact.
Actually, it’s not objective or fact at all. From birth, each baby’s subconscious begins to interpret the baby’s experiences, and files those records for future reference. Every new experience is filtered through the previous references that baby’s subconscious already holds.
Since one of the most important roles of the subconscious is to interpret and give meaning to experiences, the details of these experiences are not recorded exactly as they occurred – as they would be through a camera lens, for example.
The role of the subconscious is not to simply record exactly what happened, objectively; its role is to determine what that experience means – what it means to that particular individual. This design allows each of us to learn to thrive as effectively as possible, in the particular environment we’re born into.
No Such Thing as Common Reality
By the time we’re adults, we have an indisputable foundation of what we know – about ourselves and the world around us. The combination of personal experiences, what we’ve been taught, and what we’ve witnessed forms our unique version of reality.
And this reality is unique because, although two babies may be born into the same family and experience the same situations and events, their experiences will be at least slightly different.
And it only takes one slightly different experience, no matter how small, to set the path for a completely different life experience.
The Difference Between Twins
Here’s an example:
Alex and Martin are twins. Like the rest of us, they were born to parents who have their own coping skills. Naturally, being twins, the boys were born at the same time, one after the other, to the same mother. It was a natural birth. They’re both experiencing the same life and the same upbringing. Or are they? Let’s jump ahead a few years and look at Alex and Martin as adults.
Martin is married happily and runs a successful auto-mechanic business. He loves his work, having always been fascinated with cars – a passion he appears to have inherited from his father. He goes kayaking some weekends, and enjoys a busy social life. He’s managed to save and invest money; and seems to be very lucky when it comes to finding opportunities and meeting the right people.
Struggles to hold down any kind of job, is addicted to pain pills, and is deep in debt. He still lives at home because he can’t afford to live on his own. He has social anxiety, very few people he could call friends (most of whom are fellow users) and suffers from depression.
Their parents can’t understand what the problem is with Alex. They’ve brought both boys up in the same home, with the same love, and the same rules and discipline.
They should be very similar in nature since they’re twins. However, the boys’ parents assume that since children are born with different personalities, it’s just who they are. They figure that each of their boys was born with different traits, and the results are clear.
Now, let’s look at each boy’s life experience (briefly, of course). While they were both born into the same home, to the same parents, and seem to be starting the race of life on equal footing from the same starting line, running exactly the same track, they’ve ended up in completely different places.
Martin’s parents expressed their affection for him, right from the beginning, and he felt loved by both of them. As he experienced life, his subconscious interpreted his experiences and gave them meanings.
The foundation of his reality became a core belief that he was important, loved, and that the world was a safe and good place.
This foundation belief became stronger as he got older and continued to see the world through this filter. Each experience building on the previous experiences – all providing more and more proof of this reality.
One weekend, when he was around 4 years old, his dad took him into the garage where he was working on an old car.
Martin’s dad asked him to help him by passing tools, and other small tasks. As he worked, Martin’s dad explained to him what he was doing, what the tools were, and what they were for.
Martin loved spending that time with his dad. He felt a strong connection; he felt important; and he felt loved. They also had a lot of fun, and it was the happiest Martin had ever felt. From then on, Martin would often help his dad in the garage, or just spend time watching him work. As he got older, he was able to take on more and more complicated tasks. His passion for cars was born.
When he started school, he found that he excelled at English, although his skills in math were lacking – but this didn’t bother him. He made friends easily, and enjoyed sport and other physical activities. His enjoyment of sport increased his connection with others, and his communication skills and the ability to get on with those around him continued to improve.
Martin continued to help his dad work on whatever old car he had in the garage at the time; and when he was old enough, he applied for a summer job as an apprentice to a local mechanic. He was in his element, working in a commercial garage and learning everything he could about becoming a mechanic.
Alex received the same affection from his parents as his brother, right from the beginning; and felt loved by both of them – just as much as Martin since their parents were determined to treat them equally. As he continued to experience life, just like his brother, his subconscious gave meanings to his experiences and filed that data as references for who he is and the way the world works.
When he was 18 months old, he and his brother were in their pushchair as their mother pushed them through a park. His brother, Martin was awake, and alert, while Alex had dozed off into a peaceful sleep.
A boisterous dog ran up to the pushchair, and started barking playfully. Martin, being wide awake, had noticed the dog running towards them, and was delighted. Alex, being fast asleep, was awakened with a fright by the dog’s bark. He started crying, and his mother tried to comfort him.
In the meantime, Martin was enjoying the attention of the dog. The dog’s owner approached, and apologized for the intrusion. The boys’ mother reassured the owner that it was no problem at all, and the dog was lovely.
She and Martin petted the dog while she tried to encourage Alex to do the same. Alex, still reeling from the sudden rush of stress chemicals and the state of fight or flight, was unable to enjoy the moment.
While Martin’s experience of this event caused his subconscious to interpret it as meaning that dogs are fun and people friendly; Alex’s experience of the same event caused his subconscious to register danger.
The sudden state of fight or flight was interpreted, naturally, as signaling a threat. Since he was too young to understand the threat consciously, his subconscious did what it does best – it made its own connections. In this case, it calculated that the event must mean that it is not safe to fall sound asleep in this environment (the pushchair).
It connected the pushchair with danger. This “evidence” filed by his subconscious caused Alex’s body to go into a stress state whenever he was put into the pushchair in future.
His parents did not make the connection between the incident with the dog and Alex resisting the pushchair because it wasn’t an obvious or logical explanation. In fact, the incident with the dog was quickly forgotten.
The subconscious has no ability to be logical or realistic, or to determine right and wrong. The result was, whenever the boys were put into the pushchair, Martin would be absolutely fine, while Alex would cry and struggle and protest.
This was purely unconscious, but affected their expressions, tone of voice, and the way they responded to each boy.
As these experiences started to build, Alex’s subconscious continued to interpret and file the meanings it assigned to them – filtered through the previous experiences, including the original data that provided the “proof” of the fact that being in the pushchair was life-threatening.
Alex’s subconscious added to the existing data that the fact that his parents were insisting on forcing him into a “life-threatening” situation meant that he couldn’t completely trust them.
This set Alex off on an entirely different path of development than the one his brother was on. Alex became “the difficult one”. His parents began to recognize him as having a “stubborn personality” – one they believed he was born with. They unwittingly treated him accordingly; and even though this was done with great love, it reinforced Alex’s image of himself as being “stubborn” and different to his brother.
Alex felt compelled (based on all of these foundation beliefs) to keep stretching beyond the limits set for him. One Saturday, when he was four years old, one of these incidents led to his running into the corner of a table at full speed, causing a gash in his forehead.
His mother rushed him to A & E, leaving Martin at home with his dad. While Alex spent the day in A & E, in pain, his brother spent the day bonding with their dad over fixing a car.
You can probably see where this is leading. One experience after the other, all seen through the filters of the meanings assigned to the previous experiences, build a very different image of the self, how the world works and what reality is.
While Martin starts school with a belief that the world is one way; his twin brother starts the same school, on the same day, with a completely different belief. And those beliefs lead each boy to communicate with, and relate to, those around them in a different way – which again produces different experiences for each of them. And the knock-on effect continues throughout their lives.
The Main Problem
Twin boys, both starting out from the same starting line, being treated the same, by the same parents, in the same home, ending up in very different places in life.
This is, of course, a simplified example to show how the tiniest difference in an experience can completely change the course of a person’s life, based on how their subconscious interprets that particular experience – which is determined by the beliefs they already hold from previous experiences.
The problem is – none of this is recognized by the parents, teachers, or even the child himself. It seems quite obvious to those involved that this is all down to that child’s particular character; and, as he gets older, his conscious choices.
And the child has no idea why he is the way he is – which means he is powerless to make the changes his parents, teachers and the rest of the world around him want him to make.
What’s the Solution?
Change the original records and the rest changes automatically. In this case, the incident with the dog in the park is bound to be forgotten completely by Alex, Martin, and their mum. The conscious mind has no reason to maintain that memory.
Alex’s subconscious, however, has to maintain it, because it was a matter of life or death – that was the way it was interpreted at the time. For Alex’s life to change, he would need to change the references that have caused his perceptions and beliefs.
Where to Start
Although he can’t remember the incident in the park, he can remember the argument he had with his parents when they were insisting he stay at home instead of going to that party he really wanted to attend. It was a massive argument, with his parents eventually grounding him for a week. And he never did get to that party.
He felt so resentful, angry and frustrated that those stress chemicals – that emergency fight or flight state – caused the event to be burned into his memory as one of the most intense experiences of his teenage life.
As an adult, Alex can still remember that incident. He uses Faster EFT to address that particular memory. He starts to work on it; and eventually flips it. Sometime later, he remembers another incident in which he was walking in the street. A dog behind the fence of a scrap yard he was passing, suddenly and viciously attacked.
Fortunately, the fence was between himself and the dog; but the shock of the attack has stayed with him for some reason. The fear was so intense and so sudden, it took him a long time to calm down.
Behind the Scenes
Behind the scenes, his subconscious had connected the scrap yard incident, with the dog in the park. It has also connected the many struggles with his parents regarding the pushchair. And those struggles are connected to similar struggles with his parents (in the form of arguments). His subconscious has added those to the same structure.
Now that Alex has cleared and flipped one memory of a significantly emotionally-charged incident of a clash with his parents over going to a party; it is bringing up a related memory. A memory that the conscious mind would never recognize as related.
A dog attack and an argument with his parents wouldn’t be a logical connection to Alex’s conscious mind; it has no idea of how the subconscious has structured these memories.
As Alex uses Faster EFT to address and flip the memory of the scrap yard dog attack; his subconscious brings up one or two other memories that are connected; and eventually, the structure of the issue Alex has with trust and social anxiety breaks down.
This results in a sudden realization that he no longer feels resistance to attending a social event. He also starts to notice he’s getting on better with his parents. In addition to this, he has an idea for a business he would never have thought of before.
As long as Alex continues to use the Faster EFT technique to address any issues and memories that come up that bother him, he will continue to restructure his version of reality, his self-image, and how the world works. And as a result, he will start to see massive changes in his life he never expected. His brain is restructuring; and he’s thinking, feeling and behaving differently – based on the different records his subconscious is now referencing.
For more information on how and why Faster EFT works, read: The Basics of FasterEFT
For guidance on how to use the technique, read: The Faster EFT Technique – Step-by-Step.
To watch Robert G. Smith (founder of Faster EFT) explain how the mind works, visit the Faster EFT YouTube Channel.