The power of the mind – it can help even when we don’t know why!

In my last post I shared a memory that showed how how our minds can play nasty tricks on us.  Today I’m going to talk about how our subconscious minds can help us out, even if we don’t fully understand why.

When I was doing my undergrad in pharmacology, we spent a lot of time looking at the positive and negative effects that drugs can have.  When developing new medicines we have to consider what is called the cost/benefit analysis.  Put simply, will this do more harm than good.  It can be used to measure not only how effective a drug is in combatting a disease but also if it is more or less effective – or has worse side effects than drugs which are already on the market.

One of the control elements of these experiments is called double blind testing.  This means that the group of people who will test the drug will be divided into those who get the real drug and those who get a inactive substance.  The reason we call this double blind testing is that the scientists or health professionals who administer the drug, also don’t know who receives an active or inactive substance.  This is done to reduce or remove any influence that they could have on the outcome, if they know they are giving a sugar pill this could be obvious to the person receiving it and influence the outcome of the study.

What is regularly observed is that the control group, the people who were given an inactive (or placebo) treatment, also show either an improvement in symptoms or display side effects.  This is known as the placebo effect.  Currently we don’t know much about how this actually works but some interesting research is underway, if you are interested in knowing more about the research here’s a link to a good article which isn’t too loaded with jargon

What we can see from the placebo effect is that the subconscious mind is very powerful, it can sometimes work with us and help us with problems which are very real.  This is where hypnotherapy, coaching and NLP work, on the subconscious level.  Huge changes can take place here which lead to real, beneficial changes in our lives.  To find out more about the services I offer and how I can help feel free to get in touch.