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Our Unconscious Mind
The unconscious part of our minds is outside of our conscious awareness and is not easily accessible, meaning we can’t just conjure its content up like we can a seemingly forgotten telephone number (that resides in our subconscious ). This lack of ready availability makes our unconscious minds both mystifying (“Why do I keep doing things that hurt me ?”) and seemingly beyond our control, often leading to a sense of frustration and helplessness.
The unconscious mind consists of three forces that often lead us down unhealthy roads.
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We like to think of ourselves as highly evolved and rational beings who think, feel, and act in ways that are intentional and reasonable. We hold this perception because it enables us to believe that we are “captains” of our lives and help us believe that we are in control of the choices we make ...
First, despite our being supposedly so evolved compared to the rest of the animal kingdom with our cerebral cortex and, more importantly, our pre-frontal cortex, we frequently still respond to the world as animals driven by our p...
Second, carrying around emotional baggage from our childhood is, for most of us, a part of the human condition. Early in our lives, we develop certain ways of thinking, feeling, and behaving that help protect us from some p...
Lastly, the more that primitive forces and emotional baggage direct our lives, the more those characteristic ways of acting on and reacting to our world become habitual and the first response we make, even when it may not be appropriate or healthy. For example, when we perceive someone judging us...
The PFC allows us to engage in what is commonly referred to as “executive functioning ,” which involves the ability to guide our behavior in more intentional ways by weighing pros and cons, calculating risk...
And so it goes.
Am I in control? Or just under the illusion of being in control?
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We usually assume the worst if we get hurt by the people we love and trust. The various biases in our minds (confirmation bias, fundamental attribution error, and availability bias) play havoc in our relationships.
Hanlon’s razor can shift our mind from an assumption of bad intentions by ...
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