Chapter 7

Putting It All Together

There is one thing stronger than all the
armies in the world, and that is an idea
whose time has come.
–Victor Hugo

The Differences That Make a Difference

As you have learned, PSYCH-K is based largely on whole-brain integration processes derived from years of brain research. Coupled with knowing how to effectively communicate your personal goals to the subconscious mind where they can do the most good, PSYCH-K is an effective way to quickly and easily change outdated subconscious perceptions and beliefs that may be sabotaging your goals in life. But, those steps aren’t the only things that distinguish PSYCH-K from other self-help processes. Although no single process of change has all the answers, all the time, for all people, the following elements included in PSYCH-K should make any process more effective. Consider these important features when you are comparing PSYCH-K to other methods of change and deciding which process or processes are right for you.

The Plague of Powerlessness

A growing sense of powerlessness is evident in people everywhere. It is a deep feeling of helplessness to influence or control important aspects of our lives. The result is that we often depend on “experts” to take care of our mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. This dependency can foster an attitude of victimhood and impotence. We stop taking responsibility for our lives and turn that responsibility over to others.

This tendency is even apparent in the world of self-help techniques. It is common to hear self-help practitioners of various backgrounds talk about doing a technique on or to a client. This notion of doing something on or to someone carries with it the not-so- subtle implication that the facilitator is going to be responsible for what happens during the session and that the client is going to play a passive role in the healing/change process. In essence, the success of the session will depend on the skill of the facilitator rather than any resources the client may bring to the interaction.

With PSYCH-K, nothing could be further from the truth. PSYCH-K is a do-with process that depends predominantly on the inner wisdom of the individual seeking change. It is designed to engage and activate the inner resources of the subconscious and superconscious minds (more about the superconscious later). In partnership with a PSYCH-K facilitator, this approach honors the power and responsibility of the individuals in making the changes they seek. The PSYCH-K change processes themselves are self-affirming and self-empowering. Hence, they are an effective “vaccine” against the Plague of Powerlessness.

Permission Protocols

One very important feature of all PSYCH-K processes is the Permission Protocol. Many self-help techniques simply assume it is a good idea to “fix” a problem without first considering the possibility that the problem may be cleverly disguised as an opportunity to learn an important life lesson. By hastily killing the messenger, you may lose the message and miss the lesson!

Furthermore, problems can simply be conscious or subconscious strategies for meeting important needs in your life. In other words, the problem you want to get rid of may actually be a solution to a much greater problem. What may appear to be a disability to do one thing may actually be an ability to do (or avoid) something else.

For instance, I worked with a teenage girl and her mother in a series of private sessions. The girl was having epileptic-like seizures. A neurologist had examined her, and the physiological reality of the seizures was confirmed; however, attempts at treatment were unsuccessful. During private sessions with the young girl I became suspicious about the role the seizures were playing in her life. As it turns out, the girl was graduating from high school and was terrified about going to college and living more independently. She would then be subject to the consequences of her choices in life, and she felt extremely insecure about her ability to make the right choices. As a consequence, she came to rely on her mother to drive her wherever she wanted to go and to use her seizures as a reason to restrict most of her activities to the home environment where she felt safe. We used PSYCH-K to create a very different picture of the independent life she so feared. By establishing new, supportive subconscious beliefs, she completely changed her attitude about going to college and living on her own. In just a few sessions her fears were gone, and so were her seizures!

This experience illustrates the importance of considering the consequences of simply removing symptoms without being aware of the purpose they may play in the total picture of a person’s life. It is little wonder that the physiological attempts to treat the seizures didn’t work, because the underlying cause was psychological. Had the medical treatments removed the symptom, I can only wonder: What other symptom would the mind have manifested to cope with the fear of being independent? Removing symptoms by a medical, psychological, or self-help process, without considering the benefit the symptom may be providing in a person’s life, may be just trading one problem for another.

Unless you believe we live in a random universe devoid of meaning, where chance and accidents are the norm, you probably see your life as a series of meaningful occurrences that happen for a reason. I certainly came to that conclusion after numerous “meaningful coincidences,” also known as synchronicities, shaped my life.

Problems are a part of our meaningful experiences. They can be the bearers of important messages. Have you noticed that even if you can get rid of the problem, it will often recur in the same or a different form to give you yet another chance to learn the lesson it may represent? In fact, it often comes back with a vengeance. If you didn’t “get it” when the message was just a whisper from the wee small voice within, you may experience it as a smack in the face next time around! With PSYCH-K you can get the lesson before releasing the symptom. The change process uses muscle testing to get permission before making the change. Permission is requested from both the subconscious and superconscious minds to assure the safety and appropriateness of proceeding with the belief change process.


The Superconscious Connection

Whether you call it Superconscious Mind, Higher Self, Spirit, Soul, or something else, the concept of a part of consciousness beyond our conscious and subconscious minds has been a part of human culture for millennia. Although many mainstream scientists and psychologists continue to debate the existence of the superconscious mind, several thousand years of spiritual history and acceptance by some of the brightest minds humanity has produced qualify it for inclusion in the PSYCH-K model for change. I believe it is this Higher Self connection to God (Divine Intelligence, Universal Mind, Spirit, etc., whatever you choose to call “It”) that guides the PSYCH-K process and is responsible for “downloading” the change patterns to my own conscious mind in 1988–89. My ego would like nothing more than to take credit for PSYCH-K, but my conscious mind and conscience know better. This reality of a spiritually expanded consciousness is an important bridge between contemporary spirituality and contemporary psychology. PSYCH-K provides a format to actively blend the two perspectives.

With acceptance of this concept of the superconscious mind as a valuable source of an expanded awareness comes a caveat about the temptation to defer even the most mundane daily choices to this level of mind. Remember, it is our conscious mind that is designed to set goals and judge results; it is our volitional mind. By contrast, the subconscious is the habitual mind. It doesn’t choose actions as much as it simply responds to its environment in an automatic fashion.

The superconscious mind is different from either of the other “minds.” It’s more like a watchful and caring parent. Its job is to oversee the developmental process of your growth and evolution as a spiritual being having a human experience–to enable you to learn your lessons and grow up to be a fully functioning adult. If you deferred all your decisions to your parents you would never achieve the necessary confidence and self-sufficiency to make it in the world on your own.

It’s one thing to confer (talk it over) with a parent when an important decision needs to be made; it’s quite another to defer to them (to let them make the decision for you).

If you think of the conscious mind as a superconscious mind “in training,” you will get the point here. The famous Greek philosopher Socrates understood this principle well. He was known for answering his students’ questions with questions. This response may have frustrated his students. However, Socrates realized the importance of each student coming to his or her own conclusion in order to develop confidence and self-sufficiency. The goal of a great teacher or parent is to have the student or child no longer depend on the teacher for answers. The goal here is for your conscious mind to integrate with the superconscious and subconscious minds, becoming a unified consciousness. In this state, intuition, volition, and action become ONE.

If You Don’t Know Where You Are Going, How Will You Know When You Arrive?

This axiom should be obvious to anyone who ever set a goal and accomplished it, yet it is a step often omitted in other personal growth processes. Many approaches simply focus on releasing or getting rid of a problem. To the subconscious mind, it is like getting into a taxi cab in New York City, with the desire to go to the Empire State Building, but telling the cab driver you don’t want to go to Times Square. Even though it is true that you don’t want to go to Times Square, that information is not especially useful to the cab driver in determining where you do want to go. Expressing your desires as negations is not only confusing but can even be counterproductive. The subconscious mind tends to omit negations. For instance, the previous sentence would most likely be heard by your subconscious as “I (negation deleted) want to go to Times Square,” one of the many places you don’t want to go! To tell your subconscious that you no longer want to be depressed, anxious, uncertain, or sick isn’t the same as telling it what you DO want, which is to be happy, calm, confident, or healthy.

Even with a more positive choice of words, abstraction can still be a problem. The positive statements just mentioned are often too abstract for the subconscious to understand and act on with clarity and precision. They need to be translated into a more sensory-based language, creating a more concrete, literal description of your goal. This process, which I call VAK to the Future, was discussed earlier. Remember, the subconscious knows the world only through your five senses. Abstract goals often create abstract, and disappointing, results.

You Can’t Build a House with Only One Tool

Many self-help systems use one specific technique to address all problems, which is like asking a carpenter to build a house using only a hammer! If the whole house could be built using only nails, it wouldn’t be a problem, but houses are more complex than that. And, people are more complex than houses.

An important feature of PSYCH-K is that, via muscle testing, it enables the subconscious mind to choose the change process it prefers. Because the subconscious mind makes the necessary belief and perceptual changes, it only makes sense to let it choose the right “tool” for the job.

Einstein Was Right

It was Albert Einstein who said, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”

PSYCH-K exemplifies this principle. In my exploration of other self-help change techniques over the past twenty years, I discovered many processes that seemed unnecessarily complex. One assumption among many practitioners and self-help explorers is that the more complex a process or body of knowledge is, the more powerful it is. The notion of complexity carries with it an air of mystery and power. The more exotic and mysterious, the better! Alas, we are still “praying to the gods of complexity” for the power we seek to improve our lives. The fact is, the power of belief rather than the power of complexity may account for the effectiveness of many complex techniques. PSYCH-K taught me that the subconscious mind is the best judge of how complex a process needs to be because it is the part of the mind that will be making the changes.

On the other end of the spectrum, I witnessed processes that were so simple they seemed “too good to be true,” and usually were. Caveat emptor.

By using the knowledge of the subconscious mind to determine how simple or complex a process needs to be in order to accomplish your goal, you can rest assured that the process of choice will be … “as simple as possible, but not simpler.”

What Counts Is the Wisdom and Ability Within You

Most self-help processes depend heavily on the skill of the facilitator. If the facilitator is distracted or just having a bad day, you can have a less than satisfactory or even counterproductive experience. This generality is not true of PSYCH-K. The fact is, you can be marginally skilled at doing PSYCH-K and still facilitate remarkable changes with yourself and others. The reason is that the quality of the experience is mostly a result of the wisdom that resides in the superconscious, and the ability of the subconscious mind of the person experiencing the process, not the skill of the facilitator. It takes the pressure off the person facilitating the process as well as the person experiencing the change. PSYCH-K relies on the inner wisdom and ability within the individual–a wisdom and ability most people don’t even know they have. Over the years, I have watched this inner intelligence manifest in people from ages 9 to 90 in workshops and private sessions, offered nationally and internationally. It is a wonder to behold!

When It Comes to Muscle Testing, the Eyes Have It

When I first began using muscle testing in my private practice, I noticed I didn’t always get accurate or logical answers when muscle testing some of my clients. For instance, when establishing communication with the subconscious mind using muscle testing, I instruct the individual to say, “My name is (subject’s actual name).” The normal muscle response is usually strong. When asked to substitute a false name in the sentence, the normal muscle response is usually weak. However, from time to time, the subject would test strong to the false name as well as their actual name. In fact, they would test strong to a variety of false statements about themselves. Without credible muscle responses, continuing with the desired belief change work was no more than a guessing game.

Over time, I began to notice a peculiar quirk of these people. Just before I pressed on the extended arm used for muscle testing, I noticed that the person’s eyes would move upwards, as if they were glancing at something on the ceiling. I remembered a bit of information from my earlier training in Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) suggesting that when people look up, they are usually processing their thoughts visually (making pictures). When they are focused straight ahead, they are processing auditorily (hearing sounds), and when they are looking downward, they are usually processing kinesthetically (experiencing feelings or physical sensations). In effect, when they looked up during the muscle test, they were moving out of their feelings and into their visual sensory system. Because the muscle testing response to self-referential statements depends on a physiological response from the subconscious mind expressed through the physical body, it was possible that the individual was not experiencing the necessary feelings to ensure an accurate muscle test. Upon further reflection and observation, I also noticed that clients with histories of significant childhood trauma were more likely to look up when asked to access unpleasant memories or make statements that might involve having to do so. It appeared that looking up was a subconscious strategy to dissociate from the unpleasant memories. This practice effectively disconnected them from the feelings necessary to create a conflicted (weak) muscle response from the subconscious. As soon as I asked the subject being tested to keep the eyes focused in a downward direction during the testing procedure, the responses normalized.

Eye position may not make a difference in other disciplines using muscle testing for purposes other than self-referential, affirmation-style statements, but where such statements are used, be aware that eye position can dramatically affect the accuracy of the responses, resulting in misleading information and false conclusions.

Clarity of Intention Matters

Knowing what part of the mind/body system you are addressing with muscle testing is critical. PSYCH-K identifies and communicates with three distinct, yet interactive levels of consciousness: the conscious, subconscious, and superconscious.

Ordinary verbal communication is the standard and sufficient link to the conscious mind. Muscle testing is an inappropriate method of communication with this level of mind because it is capable of communicating verbally. The most important features of the conscious mind in the PSYCH-K process are volition and discernment. Essentially, this part of your mind is designed to set goals (an act of volition) and judge results (an act of discernment). Based on past experiences and their consequences, the conscious mind uses its faculties of discernment and volition to make the wisest choices it can and then put them into action.

It is particularly important to have a clear intention when accessing the subconscious and superconscious minds. Where you direct your attention determines which part of the mind you are communicating with. Muscle testing is the easiest communication link to the subconscious and superconscious levels for most people. Each level has its own unique qualities and abilities to contribute to the process of change.

For example, asking the subconscious mind to give you information beyond its “habituated” perspective is inappropriate and can be misleading. The subconscious is like a precocious five-year-old with lots of information, but not much wisdom.

On the other hand, asking the superconscious mind to carry out the mechanical functions of rewriting outdated or undesirable “software” is also inappropriate because that activity is the domain of the subconscious. Remember, the subconscious is the storehouse for your attitudes, values, and beliefs, and it controls your habitual responses in life. On the other hand, the superconscious mind has wisdom and perspective the subconscious and conscious minds don’t have. Its job is to provide counsel and support to the other levels of mind and to help manifest the intentions of the conscious and subconscious mind by creating those “meaningful coincidences” in life that some people call “luck.” It usually works through the faculty of intuition. Manifestation of your goals can be disappointing and frustrating when a discrepancy arises between your conscious goals and your subconscious programming. In this case the superconscious receives mixed messages, which often manifest as mixed results. It’s analogous to driving your car with one foot on the accelerator and one foot on the brake.

The PSYCH-K permission protocols mentioned earlier clarify your intention and make the necessary distinctions to ensure you are addressing that intention to the appropriate level of mind to accomplish the task at hand. Without this clarity you are subject to the well-known pitfalls of the familiar computer metaphor, “Garbage in–garbage out.” These are just some of the most important characteristics of PSYCH-K that maintain the integrity and safety of the process and represent important differences from many other personal change processes. The step-by-step written instructions and personal training offered in the PSYCH-K workshops are all you need to utilize the techniques safely and successfully.

And one final point: PSYCH-K is a vehicle for change. It’s like a car; it doesn’t decide where you should go, it just gets you there. In other words, PSYCH-K doesn’t choose what you should believe. It helps you believe what you choose.