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Stroop Effect Versus Conscious Decision

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During your day, how aware are you of your conscious actions versus your unconscious ones? You probably believe that all your actions are done in a very conscious way. I wouldn’t doubt that you would respond that of course everything you do is done in a very conscious and deliberate fashion. Unfortunately, I am sorry to let you know that this is not true.

What you might be surprised of, though, is that a large part of what you do on a daily basis is controlled by your subconscious mind. You shouldn’t feel bad about this or ashamed; it is just part of our physiology. This happens because the subconscious mind requires less effort and energy to do what it does. The conscious mind or what could be called directed attention uses up a lot more energy because it requires you to use higher brain processes.

A good example of this is what is called the Stroop effect. You can find out more about it at this webpage, but basically it is related to the ability of most people being able to read words more quickly and automatically than they can name colors. If I asked you to very quickly give me the color of the word I’m about to list, you might actually make a mistake. So here’s your word: green.To get the full effect of this, I suggest that you go online to find a Stroop test and take it.

As you read the word that I gave you, because it had a different color than what the actual word was saying you were given conflicting signals. So your impulse–driven response was to say the word, yet you required a more thought–driven response. This means that you have to engage a different part of your brain (the anterior cingulate) to make a conscious decision to say the actual color and not what the word read.

Our behaviors are mostly a reaction from our subconscious mind. They are the programs that we run regularly on a daily basis throughout our lives. The Stroop effect shows you that sometimes you do things that you don’t really mean to. Unfortunately, you will find that you have other characteristics of behavior that are being acted upon without you really making a conscious decision to do so. A good example of this is that in a heated argument you say things that you actually don’t really mean to. The words you said were the result of an emotional hurt that you had or a belief that you held and during the argument your subconscious used it as an opportunity to speak its mind.

More and more people need to become social entrepreneurs and behavioral entrepreneurs. It is critical that they come up with good business ideas that solve social problems as well as address the behaviors of our society and the individuals that live in it. Everyone seems to focus on being a business entrepreneur yet we see everywhere more and more fiscal challenges for large companies and small business alike. Instead, we need those people to understand behavior and things like cognitive behavioral therapy so that they can find ways to develop business plans and create companies founded on these principles. This is important because we need to turn the individuals in our society from those that act on subconscious levels to one’s that live their life through conscious decision. Money can still be made in this new model, so do not worry.

It’s taxing enough on your mind to live in a present and conscious state so how are we ever going to get large groups of people to be able to do it. We have all heard of the herd mentality. We need to get away from it and develop ways to change human behavior. This can only be done through a foundational remodeling of our beliefs and the way we expect humanity to behave and act. But, by developing a business ecosystem that leverages these methodologies and new ways of thinking it gives us all a daily reminder of how we should be changing ourselves. Plus, it closes the door for people to act any other way. We need to find ways to get people to understand that the thoughts they have and the beliefs they hold create the feelings and behaviors that they execute on. They must let go of the old idea that external things like people, situations, and events are what cause them to feel and react the way they do.

It is only when we embodied the mindset of true conscious living that you will be able to reap all the rewards that the universe has placed in front of us.

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Author Christiaan Stoudt

Christiaan focuses on transformation by helping businesses and individuals strategically evolve past their limiting paradigms allowing them achieve their true success and growth potential.

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