The way you think, process, and perceive information on a daily basis has a direct link to how you behave day-to-day in your life. If you can shape and control your thoughts on both a conscious and subconscious level, then you can make changes that can help you achieve your goals.
Subliminal messages are one way to bypass your conscious thought processes and access your brain at a deep neurological level where you can implant ideas and bring them to life. It’s easy to see where these types of suggestions can impact your behavior, but it’s more difficult to answer the question of can subliminal messages make physical changes in your body and appearance.
Here, we’ll dive deep into the science of subliminal messaging to understand what it is and how it works. We’ll share examples of types of subliminals, and analyze several scientific studies that prove they can be useful. You’ll get tips on how to make them work for you, and ways to use them on a daily basis without interrupting your life.
Finally, we’ll seek to answer the question can subliminal messages make physical changes and discuss user experiences with these types of suggestions.
Let’s start with the basics so that you have a firm understanding of the way this practice can work to reshape your thoughts and behaviors.
What Are Subliminal Messages?
The term subliminal message is one that’s often misused or confused with supraliminal messaging. While both can influence your behavior, there are several significant differences between the two. It’s essential to recognize which is which so that you can harass the power of the appropriate option to meet your goals.
Simply put, subliminal messages are those that we perceive in a way that you’re not consciously aware that it is happening. You can’t see or hear them if you look for them, unlike supraliminal suggestions, which you’re able to perceive if you search for the stimulus.
Supraliminal messaging can also influence your subconscious, and you might not notice when you’re exposed to this technique. However, there’s one significant difference between these two types. If you try to perceive supraliminal stimuli, you will be able to see, hear, or otherwise identify them on a conscious level.
An excellent example of how this works is found in a 1999 research study where scientists observed the effects of music on the behavior of shoppers in a liquor store. On the first day of the study, they played German music, and on the next day, they switched to French music.
Surprisingly, the origin country of the in-store tunes had a dramatic effect on the wine that consumers purchased. On days the German music played, more German wine was sold. The same was true of French wine on the day the soundtrack was from that country.
Even more interestingly, when questioned as they were leaving the store, shoppers didn’t realize the connection between the music and their buying habits. Most people knew that music was playing, but couldn’t name the country of origin.
Because the study participants were able to perceive the sound on a conscious level, it fell into the supraliminal category. Had the suggestions been truly subliminal, they would not have been able to pinpoint the source of the influence.
Since subliminal messages are something that it’s impossible to recognize when you’re conscious, they’re often the subject of significant debate. People may find it difficult to trust things they can not hear or see, but there’s compelling evidence that these suggestions penetrate your subconscious mind and influence you on a deep level.
Next, let’s explore how they work and how your brain processes subliminal information.
How Subliminal Messages Work On Your Subconscious Mind
If you want to understand why subliminal messages are so powerful and how they can help you achieve significant changes in your mind, behavior, and even appearance, first you need to understand a bit about how your mind works.
There are two main ways that your mind absorbs and processes information – via your conscious or subconscious. If you’re familiar with how an iceberg works, then you know that only a small sliver of the mass is visible above the water. The main part exists below the surface, where it isn’t visible to the average person.
Your mind is similar. Your conscious thoughts are like the peak of the iceberg sticking out of the surface of the water. They’re something you can easily recognize, but they only account for a small fraction of all of the data your brain processes on a daily basis.
The part below the surface is like your subconscious. It makes up a much larger part of your daily thoughts and decisions and can be the source of your greatest strength if you know how to use it to your benefit.
Here’s more detail on how your conscious and subconscious minds process information and directly influence decisions you make that can everything from your mood to physical appearance.
Your Conscious Mind
During the hours of the day and night, where you are awake and alert, you’re constantly gathering feedback and information from the world around you through your conscious mind. This is where you both deliberately and actively have thoughts and decisions, and it’s likely also where you recognize your internal voice.
Your conscious mind shapes your daily behaviors and personalities, but it’s also a very limited place. You can only perceive so many things at once, and likewise, can only have so many thoughts or ideas at one time before you seemingly run out of room and start forgetting things.
That’s why most of the data, and the core of who you are and the why behind your personality, live within your subconscious.
Your Subconscious Mind
Unlike your conscious mind, there’s no limit to how much information your subconscious can process in a given moment. This is where all of the bits and pieces that make you who you are, like your memories, creativity, emotions, memories, and intellect.
Your deeper mind is also where all of your autonomic processes are regulated. You don’t need to consciously think about keeping your heart pumping and blood flowing to your muscles – it happens at an unconscious level. It’s your subconscious mind that generates new tissue, heals your wounds, and makes your hair and fingernails grow.
For that reason, many people believe it’s possible that by controlling your subconscious mind, you can make physical changes to your body. We’ll discuss how that might work in more depth below.
Before we do, it’s important to note that not everything happening at a subconscious level is positive and empowering. Because it’s a compilation of all of your memories and past experiences, if you have a traumatic event in your history, or have developed a bad habit over time, those limiters may also live in your unconscious mind.
One reason you may have difficulty manifesting your goals and dreams could be because of a limiter that you don’t even know about, and subliminal messages might help you overcome those doubts. Here’s how.
Reprogram Your Subconscious with Subliminal Messages
Your conscious mind is continually drawing from your subconscious for cues on what to do and where your focus should lie. Everything that you’ve ever experienced, dreamed about, or imagined is stored in your subconscious, and you have positive and negative reactions to daily stimulus based on that internal programming.
Fortunately, it’s possible to expose your subconscious mind to new programming that can upgrade your current responses, thought patterns, and behaviors and help you achieve success. It could be as simple as using subliminal messages daily that are designed to penetrate your mind to optimize your processes and give you positive affirmations of any change you want to see in your life.
There are three subtypes of subliminal messages. They are:
- Subvisual messages
- Subaudible messages
- Backmasking audio
Sub-visual messages are something your brain perceives visually. They are typically transmitted as images on a recording that lasts for less than a few milliseconds and isn’t something you recognize on a conscious level. Over the years, companies and political campaigns alike have been accused of using them in their marketing efforts, and the U.S. even has a ban on sub-visual advertising on broadcast networks.
The most common method of transmitting subliminal messages is through sub-audible means. These are layered in audio recordings and can be combined with music or recorded on their own on a track that sounds silent to the average person. They vibrate at a frequency that your ears don’t register, but your subconscious mind can hear and translate them.
The third type of subliminal messaging is referred to as backmasking audio. Like sub-audible recordings, these sound waves are lower than what you can hear on a conscious level, but they have one main difference. The voice on the recording is saying the message is also backward, giving your brain an additional step to decipher the message.
Do Subliminal Messages Work?
There are dozens of studies that prove the potential effect of subliminal messages. Overall, the scientific community doesn’t all agree that they work, but there is some compelling evidence that these subconscious cues can help you change your thought patterns, behavior, and mood, which could lead to you achieving your goals.
If you’re wondering if subliminal messages make physical changes, that is a question that’s a bit more difficult to prove based on any existing clinical studies. However, there is research that shows that you can condition your unconscious mind to make significant changes that could lead to weight loss or smoking cessation, which would have effects on your physical appearance.
Here are some specific examples to help answer this question and support the use of subliminal stimuli in behavior modification.
The Mind Can Perceive Subliminal Stimulus
In this 1975 study, researchers wanted to test whether or not our minds would respond to subconscious stimuli. Additionally, they used participants to test whether people were more responsive to suggestions they received on a conscious or unconscious level.
Through their series of tests, the scientists determined that the participants responded to subliminal stimuli and were able to respond despite not knowing that they were exposed to any messaging. Furthermore, their response rate was better when they were given the information subconsciously than it was when they were consciously aware of the prompt.
Researchers concluded that our minds could process subconscious information and perceive and respond to it the same way that it does under normal conditions based on their findings.
Subliminal Messages Can Help You Quit Smoking
If you’re hoping to achieve physical changes by using subliminal messaging, one of the simplest ways to see success is to change a behavior that will impact your appearance. Smoking is a habit that can cause a variety of aesthetic changes like yellow teeth or hair loss. If you quit smoking, you could see improvements in your physical appearance.
The good news is, there is scientific evidence that shows that subliminal messages can help you to quit smoking and stay cigarette-free for the long run. In this 1980 study, a group of 34 people participated in a three-week smoking cessation program. It included multiple steps, but one group also received subliminal messaging during their treatment.
After the program concluded, researchers determined that the participants who received the subliminal messages were less likely to relapse and start smoking again.
Subliminal Messages Can Help You Lose Weight
Another way that you can make physical changes with subliminal messages is to use them to develop healthier eating habits and lose weight. In a 1978 study, the research team gathered 56 women who were at least 15% over their ideal body weight.
All of the women were given an educational course on weight loss and healthy eating habits and were asked to follow the same behaviors. They then split the participants into two groups – a control group and a subliminal group.
At the end of all of their sessions, all of the women were then asked to visualize a situation where they might be tempted to overeat and to overcome it in their minds. During this time, the women in the subliminal group were then exposed to a four-millisecond subliminal message that focused on successful weight loss. The control group was also exposed to a message, but it was neutral and not related to the study.
Researchers found that the women in the subliminal group lost significantly more weight than their control counterparts, and they determined that subconscious messaging could be a powerful tool to help with weight loss efforts.
Can Subliminal Messages Make Other Physical Changes?
Although the potential ways that subliminal messaging can help influence your behavior are seemingly endless, there isn’t any research to support their power to make other physical changes to your body.
There are user testimonials and anecdotes online where fans claim that they have seen success with everything from growing taller to changing their eye color. Although it is possible that you can influence your subconscious and autonomic nervous system to divert more energy to processes you desire, like growing your hair or nails longer, there isn’t any science to prove it’s possible.
The good news is, it doesn’t hurt to try. There are no potential adverse impacts to listening to subliminal audio recordings that promise to change your physical appearance, which means there’s no inherent risk.
That said, if you truly want to harness the power of this type of unconscious persuasion, you might be better off choosing an option that will positively affect your thoughts and habits. If you choose wisely, these modifications could also lead to desired physical changes.
Tips to Be Successful with Subliminal Messages
Although there are scientific studies to support the success of subliminal messaging, there are also a few best practices to help you be as effective as possible. Here we’ll outline ways you can prime your mind for these suggestions and tips to add them into your daily routine.
Establish a Need for the Message
To ensure that your subconscious is ready to be influenced by the subliminal message, you’ll first want to establish the need with your conscious mind. You’re less likely to be successful if you’re trying to force yourself into a thought process or behavior that you don’t want to do, so it’s essential to start by establishing a goal.
Meditate or journal about the big picture of what you want to accomplish and why it’s important to you. If you’re trying to lose weight, for example, write down the positive benefits of weight loss and how your life will change for the better when you reach your goal.
By priming your conscious mind with the desire to change, you’re giving your subconscious permission to integrate those new thoughts and processes into your programming.
Focus On One Thing at a Time
Although your subconscious mind can process thousands of pieces of data daily, if you want to see significant change and success from a subliminal, it’s best to focus on one thing at a time.
When you’re trying to reprogram your mind to remove a limiting belief, overcome a hardship or trauma, or alter something at the deepest level of your being for the better, your mind may push back and be resistant.
To overcome this hurdle, sticking with one focused message that rolls up to the goal and “why” you set will help to enforce that the change needs to occur. Avoid mixing too many messages or trying to change multiple things at once to ensure you get the best results.
If you have more than one aspect of your life that you want to improve, start by making a list and then rank it from most important to least. Then, spend four to six weeks using subliminal messaging on each goal until you start to see progress. Once the new habits are ingrained in your subconscious, you can move on to the next item to begin reprogramming your mind to manifest your next accomplishment.
Find Ways to Sit Subliminal Messages Into Your Life
Another key to success with subliminal messages is repetition. The more often you’re exposed to the suggestions, the more likely your brain will be to integrate them into your thought pattern. Most clinical studies last for at least four weeks and dose participants daily with recordings, and you should aim for the same duration and frequency.
Fortunately, there are many silent subliminal options that you can use to achieve your goals. Here are four ways you can make sure you get your daily exposure.
Listen to Subliminal Messages When You Sleep
Whether you like totally silent subliminal audio recordings or prefer ones set over ambient noises like rainfall or waves crashing, you can play them while you sleep and get excellent results. Set a speaker in your bedroom to a reasonable volume right before you doze off and let the recording play while you snooze.
If you have a partner or spouse who sleeps in bed with you, you can either use headphones to limit their exposure or choose a message that will benefit you both.
Make sure not to turn your speaker up too loud. Especially with silent recordings, it might be tempting to crank the volume, but that won’t improve your results. If anything, the subconscious frequency could irritate your mind and interrupt your sleep.
If you’re someone who is particularly sensitive to subliminal messaging, you might find that you don’t feel rested when playing them at night. If that’s the case, try one of these other tips to get daily exposure.
Break Up Your Work Day with Subliminal Messages
There are software programs that you can install on your computer that will deliver visual subliminal messages to you on your screen throughout the day. This is an excellent solution for anyone with a desk job or who spends hours staring at a screen because you won’t even notice the quick flashes, but they’ll give your subconscious a boost throughout the day.
Particularly if you choose messages that feature positive affirmations or uplifting suggestions, they can help to chase away any negative internal talk and keep you focused on your big-picture goals.
The only caveat here is to be aware of the potential messages and try to limit the opportunity for embarrassment or distractions. For example, if your goal is to increase your desirability or sexual prowess, it might not be smart to have subconscious reminders of your sexuality throughout the workday.
Play Audio Subliminal Messages Via Headphones
If you don’t want to install software on your computer for visual cues, you can also listen to audio recordings during the day. It’s critical to be respectful to those around you and not expose them to the content, so be sure to use headphones if you’re in public.
You can listen through your car speakers while driving to and from work or could put in headphones while taking a taxi, Uber, or train. In the office, you can listen to the recording on your phone while you work or play it in the background while you’re cooking dinner at night.
If you choose a silent subliminal, you could even play it while you’re watching tv or scrolling through social media. Because your subconscious mind can process significantly more information than your conscious mind can, you can multi-task and still reap the benefits.
Combine Subliminal Messaging with Conscious Messages
One last way to make your subliminal conditioning as effective as possible is to layer in affirmations that your conscious mind can perceive throughout the day. Once you’ve set your goal and decided what you want to achieve, leave yourself notes around your home to remind you of the things you’re trying to manifest.
Try placing a note on your bathroom mirror, refrigerator, or nightstand that you will see at regular intervals to reinforce the message. Even if you don’t consciously read the note every time, your brain will still recognize it and help you to change your behavior and thought process to match the information you’re subconsciously delivering daily.
Start Making Changes
Although there are many critics who are skeptical of the effects of subliminal messages, there is also a lot of science that proves they can work to help you make large and small changes to your thoughts, actions, and behavior.
More research is needed to determine if they are a viable solution to alter your physical appearance. It’s possible they could help you with behavior changes that will also impact the weight you look, like smoking cessation or weight loss, but less likely that subliminal messages could alter characteristics like your eye or hair color.
There’s no harm in trying, especially if you do it the right way. Start by setting a goal and visualizing your success, and then use subliminal messages daily to help you to achieve it. Remember that repetition and consistency is essential, and if you can enforce your desires in your conscious mind, you will be that much more successful.