Sigmund Freud said, “When making a decision of minor importance, I have always found it advantageous to consider all the pros and cons. In vital matters, however, such as the choice of a mate or a profession, the decision should come from the unconscious, from somewhere within ourselves. In the important decisions of personal life, we should be governed, I think, by the deep inner needs of our nature.”

Numerous neuroscience experiments have confirmed Freud’s statement. For example, a recent experiment reported in Science Magazine revealed that the unconscious reactions of 135 newlyweds to their spouses proved to be a strong predictor of just how successful their marriages would become. Clearly our minds can mislead us in important decisions if they exclude our deeper instincts.

The power of our unconscious is immense. It draws from our genes, dreams, needs and memories; it reflects our imagination, insight and intuition, and ultimately expresses our conscience. As the experiment above suggests, focusing on the control of our mind can block this deeper wisdom.

Growing children, less trained in intellectual logic and adult talk, naturally rely more on the unconscious.

We adults should respect nature, and realize there must be a reason that a kid’s logical brain doesn’t mature until age 25 – the age required to rent a car.

We adults like the control our logical minds offer our lives – to our detriment, both personally and with kids. It can unwittingly lead us to fall into logically controlling our talks with kids, which can foster poor communications at best, and more typically miscommunications. Kids read our hearts, not our minds, when they respond to us.

So adults often believe kids are “getting it,” and move ahead. But as this process continues, this heart-mind gap widens, until things come crashing down and reality confronts kids’ failure to follow through or do the right thing – according to our understanding.

– Special to the Telegram