Judith here. A former client (“Matthew”) went from executive position to executive position, each time hoping that his new employer would allow him to shine. Each time, as he explained to us, he started out feeling empowered by the hope that this time his boss would respect his intelligence, would encourage his vision, would allow him to display overt leadership excellence—and thereby advance his own career.

Yet, throughout several jobs at different types of companies he was faced with the painful challenge of working for someone who continually questioned his judgment, restrained his impact, and insisted on a type of micro-management that would lead to our client’s departure far sooner than expected—usually with his resignation in protection of what little self-respect still remained.

Now, you might think Matthew’s history was simply the luck-of-the-draw. But, when we looked more closely at this pattern, we learned that in between jobs he would repeat self-condemning patterns like “procrastinate” in following up on potential leads, “waste time” by re-organizing his tools in the garage, and perseverate about the piled up paperwork on his desk.

It would have been easy to simply assume that Matthew was sabotaging himself. But how would that be helpful to his need to move beyond this pattern?

Or we could have been a partner in crime, agreeing with Matthew that he was a victim. Too often people feel like victims when in fact they are caught in an unconscious pattern resulting from what is known as sanskar in the East Indian culture – deep underpinnings of identity or life expectations that have been passed on from parental influences and even from generation to generation.

Without understanding that each of us has deeply rooted “sanskar” or unconscious patterns percolating within, it’s easy to remain believing that life is exclusively run by the conscious mind and if you want your life to be different, you just need to change your beliefs, your state, your idea about victimhood. Then you can go to great lengths to come up with affirmations, mantras, and other mind control techniques to try to change what happens to you. (the spinal cord and brain stem) are very well developed, whereas the higher regions (the limbic system and cerebral cortex) are still rather primitive. The lower brain is therefore largely in control of a newborn’s behaviour (cf. reflexes ), while the cerebral cortex is still quite immature. As the highest, most recently evolved part of the brain, the cerebral cortex is responsible for all of our conscious thoughts, feelings, memories, and voluntary actions.” (quoted from “Mother and Child Glossary”)

So for every child the next several years brings intense brain growth coupled with a continual in-put stream of what becomes unconscious patterning because the child is, as yet, too young to be able to evaluate the overt and covert input that their little brain and emotional system are unconditionally absorbing. That input is continually teaching them about who they are, how the world is, what they can expect from their care-givers, and what’s expected of them. They are also learning what they can expect to be punished for and by whom, rewarded for and how, and what and who they are responsible for. And it’s all being assimilated in the unconscious.

So with Matthew we had to discover what had created his unconscious magnet for unsupportive employment and punitive bosses even when he’d risen to the ranks of executive status.

And it wasn’t too long before Matthew revealed that he had been raised by parents who had stayed with each other out of cultural duty, and routinely fell into screaming matches that could even include throwing dishes or silverware at each other. Not only was the environment fraught with threat and potential danger, his father modeled the passive, obediently people-pleasing demeanor Matthew would later emulate, while his mother who had suffered the terror-filled hunger of the United States depression routinely put Matthew down for “not being smart enough,” “not taking care of things properly,” and “never producing good enough grades.” She was the early model for the bosses and work environments that Matthew would be drawn to later in his career.

So while Matthew’s career pattern could be called self-sabotage, it’s more accurate and respectful to understand his behavior as the unconscious magnet or antennae for what was familiar—family-iar—and his inability to be attracted to respect, encouragement, and abundance as that was not only not familiar, it would be contrary to his Unconscious Forbiddance to betray his family roots.

Be aware as you mull over what you’ve just read, the phenomenon of Unconscious Forbiddance is a little understood psychological epidemic.

But that rarely works, because self-sabotaging patterns are situated in the depths of one’s unconscious programming. Remember, we are talking about the power of unconscious programming here!

That early primitive programming occurs for every baby, infant, and toddler when they are too young to know any better. It starts in the womb, as the child’s brain and awareness are first developing. Then the baby is born with only 25% of what will be its weight at maturity. “We once believed that a newborn’s brain was completely “wired” at birth. Now we know that many of the important brain connections that help to determine who we are, how we think, and how we handle our emotions develop after birth….By birth, only the lower portions of the nervous system

Author's Bio: 

Judith Sherven, PhD and her husband Jim Sniechowski, PhD http://JudithandJim.com have developed a penetrating perspective on people’s resistance to success, which they call The Fear of Being Fabuloustm. Recognizing the power of unconscious programming to always outweigh conscious desires, they assert that no one is ever failing—they are always succeeding. The question is, at what? To learn about how this played out in the life of Whitney Houston, check out http://WhatReally KilledWhitneyHouston.com

Currently working as consultants on retainer to LinkedIn providing executive coaching, leadership training and consulting as well as working with private clients around the world, they continually prove that when unconscious beliefs are brought to the surface, the barriers to greater success and leadership presence begin to fade away. They call it Overcoming the Fear of Being Fabulous http://OvercomingtheFearofBeingFabulous.com