The “mind,” what exactly is the mind?


Most would probably consider it to be an independent, standalone kind of ethereal… “thing.” What say you? Perhaps trying to pin down a static definition of the mind should be left to the philosophers, but that doesn’t mean we can’t throw our psychological two cents into the debate. Think of a stream with tributaries flowing into it creating a larger stream. From a Self-Coaching perspective, I like to think of the mind as consisting three main “tributaries” all merging into one stream that we can collectively refer to as the mind. And like a stream, the mind isn’t a static entity; it’s an ever flowing, ever changing, dynamic, unfolding process consisting of:

●Consciousness: that which we are aware of or can become aware of
● Unconsciousness: that which we can access only indirectly through dreams, reveries, and other spontaneous influences
● Reflexive habit-loops, which are stimulus-response driven thoughts and perceptions that can occur without any conscious or unconscious deliberation.

Depending on your life circumstances, each of these aspects of the mind can influence your behavior and emotions. Typically, when it comes to anxiety or depression, it’s the reflexive habit-loops in conjunction with unconscious, past associations that will dominate the picture while consciousness may impotently try to resist—I call this ‘passive-mind.’

#anxiety #depression #unlearninganxietydepression

Stay in the know with Dr. Joe
subscribe to our newsletter:

The Self-Coaching newsletter is filled with tips and advice for dealing with all of life's challenges: emotional struggle, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, as well as the psychology of weight loss and lifelong weight mastery

The diagnosis of clinical anxiety or depressive disorders requires a physician or other qualified mental health professional. The information provided is intended for informational purposes only. Please understand that the opinions shared with you are meant to be general reference information, and are not intended as a diagnosis or substitute for counseling with your physician or other qualified mental health professional. provides access to resources and other information as a public service. Although reasonable efforts have been made to ensure that all electronic information made available is current, complete and accurate, Joseph J. Luciani, Ph.D. (Dr. Joe) does not warrant or represent that this information is current, complete and accurate. All information is subject to change on a regular basis, without notice.Joseph J. Luciani, Ph.D., assumes no responsibility for any errors in the information provided, nor assumes any liability for any damages incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of the Website.Any electronic information or inquiries that receives from visitors shall not be considered as or treated as, confidential. The inclusion of, or linking to, other Website URLs does not imply my endorsement of, nor responsibility for, those Websites, but has been done as a convenience to my website visitors.