Recently, I finished reading this book called Subliminal, by Leonard Mlodinow..
I’m still working on self improvement, and when I stumbled upon this book, I thought it would be a nice change of pace. Most “self-help” books are about communicating on a personal emotional level, this book is different on my journey because it talks on a broader scientific scale. Throughout the book there are tons of case studies (properly footnoted too!) that provide the revelations necessary to break down old paradigms and have a more conscious reaction to life.
A major theme in this book, is that the subconscious is there to help make our lives run smoother. It is not like the Freudian days, where subconsciousness was the place things were suppressed, but it is the place were we can automatically respond to stimuli.
I’d definitely recommend the book with just a fair warning that the author tends to write in long winded run on sentences. Granted, he’s got a great sense of humor, but it def isn’t a book to read out loud. haha
An excerpt from the chapter on self:
As the psychologist Jonathan Heidt put it, there are two ways to get at the truth: the way of the scientist and the way of the lawyer. Scientists gather evidence, look for regularities, form theories explaining their observations, and test them. Attorneys begin with a conclusion they want to convince others of and then seek evidence that supports it, while also attempting to discredit evidence that doesn’t. The human mind is designed to be both a scientist and an attorney, both a conscious seeker of objective truth and an unconscious, impassioned advocate for what we want to believe. Together these approaches vie to create our worldview.
After reading all the studies, examples, revelations, etc, it was really nice to see the author end on a note promoting a positive self image. Which, ties in with the self-help journey I’ve been on.
Mlodinow says, “In fact, studies show that the people with the most accurate self-perceptions tend to be moderately depressed, suffer from low self-esteem, or both. An overly positive self-evaluation, on the other hand is normal and healthy.”
Imagine that, fifty thousand years ago, anyone in their right mind looking toward the harsh winters of northern Europe would have crawled into a cave and given up. Women seeing their children die from rampant infections, men watching their women die in childbirth, human tribes suffering from drought, flood, and famine must have found it difficult to keep courageously marching forward. But with so many seemingly insurmountable barriers in life, nature provided us with the means to create an unrealistically rosy attitude about overcoming them–which helps us do precisely that.
And on that, remember, you rock.