A Conscious thought is a process where memories, feelings and active choices are made. We consciously think about the decisions and processes in the things we choose to do.
Subconscious, not to be confused with unconscious, occurs when we perform an action without conscious thought. No active thinking or processing is required. We know what we need to do so just do it. For example walking, you don’t think about moving one leg in front of the other or contracting muscles or even using your arms opposite to each step for counter balance.
These two states of mind can be incredibly significant in all aspects of day to day life.
Knowing the difference between these processes can significantly help with learning and outcomes. During initial learning phases, or cognitive, we have to process a lot of information. However once we repeatedly practice or rehearse the information we move to associative and then autonomy, the information or skill is now in our subconscious. Malcolm Gladwell outlined that it can take, 10000 attempts that are performed perfectly in order for a skill to become autonomous or in our subconscious.
In the sporting world the difference bet ween these two states can be hugely significant for any level of performance.
Ask Usain bolt how he ran 9.58s, chances are he won’t be able to tell you other than I got to the finish line as fast as I could.
The moment a subconscious thought becomes a Conscious thought can be dangerous and detrimental to performance.
In order to show how easy it for this to happen.
What is your tongue doing now?
Prior to asking this there was no thoughts about it. Now imagine if someone said something to you before a race or a meeting/interview? That’s all you will think about!
Closing point, sometimes the best things happen when you don’t think about it or try to understand what happened.