Are you stuck in an inner tug-of-war?
Have you ever noticed that you are in conflict with yourself? One moment you feel quite confident and optimistic, ready to take on any challenges that may present themselves to you, and then suddenly you find yourself anxious and insecure, seriously doubting that you’re capable of doing anything right. What is this conflict about, and who started it?In the natural course of our personal evolution, we develop a variety of personas and identities, which are rooted in our subconscious mind as so-called parts. Depending on the situation and the people we’re with, we automatically slip in and out of these identities. Our identity as a mother or a father differs from the one we inhabit when we visit our parents and step back into the role of daughter or son. The persona we adopt during our job is different from the one that comes forth when we’re with our spouse or friends. Most of these parts or facets of our subconscious coexist and work together without any conflict, thus allowing us to switch hats quickly and easily.
Inner conflicts occur when two parts of our subconscious mind seemingly have opposite agendas and ideas for what is best for us. Let’s say a fearful part of you wants to make sure that you’re safe and avoid pain, while a confident, optimistic part of you has pleasure, success, and rewards for you in mind. While one part of you focuses on survival, the opposite one wants you to excel and thrive. Or have you ever listened into an inner argument between a positive, encouraging voice and a judgmental, very pessimistic one? The inner critic, who may sound like a scolding parent or a teacher who is reprimanding you, forces you to listen to old tapes from your childhood, such as “You’re not good enough,” “Who do you think you are?” or “You will get in trouble for this for sure!”
A conflict between two subconscious parts often shows up as procrastination and inconsistent, even self-sabotaging behavior. You forge one step forward and retreat two steps back; you come up with promising ideas and impactful commitments, but then find yourself never following through. For some, inner conflicts feel as though they’re trying to accelerate a car and pulling the brakes at the same time, using a lot of energy to make very little progress. For others, these inner conflicts are that little pebble in the shoe that makes moving forward difficult. In either case, they eventually make you feel conflicted, insecure, and stuck. How can you solve these subconscious conflicts?
In the past, you probably just wanted to get rid of the anxious, insecure, or self-bashing side of you. But by eliminating a part of yourself, even if that part is negative, critical, self-sabotaging, or anxious, you would actually cause a fragmentation of your subconscious mind, which is the opposite of healing and wholeness. And you probably noticed that the harder you tried to ignore or eliminate that part, the stronger and more obnoxious it seemed to become, until it was impossible for you to mute its voice and feelings. Through working consciously with your subconscious mind, you can learn how to resolve anxiety- and insecurity-driven inner conflicts by reintegrating the part of you that has been still holding onto these emotions. Only this way can you create lasting wholeness and inner peace.