Most people have little idea of the extent to which their subconscious minds control their lives - even doing much of their 'thinking' for them! The latest research indicates that during the normal daily routine, we are only truly conscious for at most about 12-15% of the time!
That is just a couple of hours per day or even less. The rest of the time, our subconscious minds are in the driving seat.
It sounds pretty weird when put this way, but the fact is that your life is only partly what 'you' think, do or want to make of it - the rest (by far the larger part) is actually determined by what your subconscious mind directs you to do.
When you think about it, you can easily see the truth of this: From the moment you wake up, your actions are probably much the same each day - you are literally not 'thinking' about what you are doing. For most of the time you are on autopilot, with your conscious mind just ticking over - rehashing memories from the day before, vaguely planning, fantasizing or idly generating other inconsequential thoughts of one kind or another. Even when you consciously engage with a problem or a change from normal circumstances, your ideas and reactions and even your thoughts will largely be drawn from your stockpile of previously stored concepts, and reactions to similar circumstances.
And when someone speaks to you, do you really think about what you are going to say, or does a reply normally just 'come to you' automatically? (that is, without conscious thought). We all have first hand experience of the conversational abilities of the conscious mind in situations where the connection to the subconscious 'speech prompter' is temporarily blocked - for instance in highly-charged social situations involving emotions such as anger, apprehension, embarrassment, fear, humiliation and so on!
So it is no secret to anyone who has looked into almost any aspect of 'self improvement' or 'self help' that the key to real, effective and permanent personal change is in the subconscious mind - specifically the beliefs and assumptions we hold deeply within ourselves.
We are barely aware of this hidden belief system (which has usually been assembled more or less at random, and for most people consists largely of illogical junk built on unfounded association) yet the subconscious parts of our minds use this stuff to drive and control almost every aspect of our lives.
We may think that 'we' are in charge of our lives, that we have 'free will' to run our lives. But the truth is that our actions and even our very thoughts are in fact largely governed by habit (especially habits of thought) and by the way we feel at any given time.
Take a moment to look at your reaction to that statement (please re-read it if you are currently running on autopilot!). Do you reject it outright because you know that you must be in charge because you feel in charge? That any other possibility is 'obviously' patent nonsense? Perhaps you even feel a direct emotional response of irritation, even anger at such a 'stupid' suggestion?
But whatever your reaction, did you actually consider the objective facts, or did some pre-digested set of thoughts simply spring to mind without any real analysis? If you look closely at your response, I can virtually guarantee that you will find that at the root of it is emotion maquerading as logic, not logic itself. A 'feeling' that leads to a thought, rather than the other way around. This is how we all get through the day - not by analysing each new thing we encounter, but simply by internally comparing it with our existing store of 'information' and responding to the emotional stimulus which 'comes back'.
But the feelings that are generated by our emotional responses are NOT a part of our conscious waking minds, or even a direct consequence of our thoughts. They actually originate deep in the subconscious mind, which constantly directs our behaviour by 'pulling our strings' and 'pushing our buttons'.
When we act in response to one of these habitual cues, we may immediately supply 'logical' reasons for our actions so that we can maintain an illusion of being in control.
But in reality we are to a very large extent *under* control.