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The Cow Path Model of Change™ is a structured, systematic 6 part model developed by Hypnosis for Life. Hypnosis for Life is the industry leader and one of the longest running clinical hypnotherapy businesses in the Edmonton region. 

The majority of individuals who access services at Hypnosis for Life have, at one time or another: 1) made good use of traditional clinical psychology services  2) made good use of needed medication  3) attended community funded support programs (community counselling, 12 step programs and/or treatment centers).

These options provide initial needed relief, however, relapse is common. Challenges tend to re-occur until the subconscious mind has fully accepted and absorbed new paths of least resistance (aka cow paths).

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Edmonton Hypnotherapy CEO Mindset Daily Newsletter-28
subconscious mind review

In several emails and most recently in email 26 and email 27, I spoke about the need to offer incremental learning to the subconscious mind. In this email, I will offer a simple example that demonstrates the minds automatic desire to return to a path of least resistance (aka cow path) and encourage you to look at the process involved in creating a simple change.

  • Imagine that your favorite chair has been sitting in a right corner of the room for quite some time.
  • Imagine that you decide to reorganize your living space and move your chair to the left corner of the room.

For a period, most people will find that they automatically enter the room and turn right, to where the chair used to be. Our bodies have developed a cellular memory that compels us to move to the right and this happens without conscious thought. Clearly, over time we have developed numerous associations with the chair being in a particular place.

It takes a moment to register that the chair is not longer where we are accustomed to it being.

Once we become aware that the chair is not there we are reminded that it has been moved. Only then do we consciously navigate to the new position.

It may take many instances of redirecting ourselves before we naturally enter the room and turn left to settle comfortably in the chair.

Eventually we begin to build a pattern of turning left, without conscious thought, and think “ah-ha I have finally got it.”

Then the day comes when we enter the room, and without thinking, we automatically turn right. This day comes when: we are feeling tired, hungry, overwhelmed or out of sorts.

When this day comes our response needs to be “well, that’s ok. I supposed that I have yet to fully associate with the new position of my chair and my subconscious mind is simply still in learning mode.”

This simple chair example demonstrates the subconscious minds stubborn but often lazy refusal to consider something new and improved.

I encourage you to try this simple exercise. Experiment and be curious about the process involved.

Terri Lee Cooper MSc. RSW