Tapping into your Subconscious

If you read the title of this post and you start thinking “Oh, no!…The Friar’s gone New-Age on us!“, rest assured, Dear Readers.  This has absolutely nothing to do with channeling your inner self or helping you grow as an individual.    

Rather,  I just want to tell you about a game I’ve discovered to keep myself amused during those long, dreary meetings. 

You know the kind of soul-sucking meeting I’m talking about.   The one when you’re in a dark stuffy conference room, with someone going blah-blah-blah and you’re too numb to even day-dream.

I dunno what it is with that unique environment, but it just tends to propel me straight into the strange nether-world of being half-awake.  (I suspect it’s my brain’s self-defense mechanism kicking in…it wants to shut itself off so it won’t go insane with boredom.)

You know when you get to that point when you’re just on the verge of dozing off?  When you’re still awake enough to be aware of where you are, but you cant’ help it and you start dreaming?  Here’s what you do:

Start taking notes, if you can.  Seriously.

Sometimes, I’m able to snap awake for brief seconds, and write down what I just dreamed about.  Here are actual examples of “words” that my mind came up with while half-asleep.




Angus Eotion



Don’t ask me how these words came to be…they just did.   And don’t ask me what they mean.  

(Though I think the 4th one would be a cool name for a high-tech company!)

Pretty cool, huh?  

Try it yourself, next time you start to feel yourself nodding off.   You might be surprised to see what you come up with.

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22 Comments on “Tapping into your Subconscious”

  1. Ellen Wilson Says:

    This is why I write in the morning, Friar. To try and capture this in between state.

    This petitah word. I like it. It is a good Viking pole sister word that I stake my claim too.

    Petitah vision quest ivalking in forest land of humphralah. Hoh! I am Petitah.

    Or does that make me sound too small? Girthala makes me sound fat.

  2. If’in sounds like somewhere in Middle-earth. Do Orcs inhabit If’in?

  3. Friar Says:

    Petitah sounds feminine without being too big (like Helga). The word is yours if you want it.

    Hahahah! If’in. Yes, I’m sure Orcs live there (and Ents). Mabye Vikings too.

  4. Kelly Says:


    Sleepy stuff is cool. There’s a lot of brain we can’t access, and at that moment you get a glimpse of how truly odd that inaccessible space must be.

    Very New Age, no matter what you say. You’ll have to be twice as Neanderthal tomorrow to make up for it.



    P.S. Please, get email subscriptions set up on here for folks who don’t use RSS (that would be me). You will make a 29-year-old very happy. 😉

  5. Friar Says:


    There’s a famous story about Kekule (a chemist in the 1800’s). He was trying to figure out the chemical structure for the molecule of benzene. He just coudln’t figure it out..he couldn’t make the carbons and hydrogens fit together.

    Apparently, he dozed off and dreamed of a bunch of snakes making a ring..one biting the tail of the other. He awoke, to realize that the molecule is a 6-carbon ring. And he was right.

    What a cool example of your subconscious solving your problems while you sleep!

    As for New Age. Yes, I need to be Viking or Neanderthal tommorrow to make up for this touchy-feely mood.

    Tomorrow…Friar SMASH!!

  6. How can I play if I don’t attend meetings anymore? The sacrifices I make to be a freelancer!

  7. Friar Says:


    Force yourself to attend a 2-hour seminar or lecture on a subject you have zero interest in. That’s what you need to get in the “Zone”.

    Welcome to my job! 🙂

  8. Ellen Wilson Says:

    Hey, I remember that benzene guy! It’s in some book I have. I’ll have to look it up. This all reminds me of the shamans of the amazon rainforest talking about these plants…ah…I will have to look it up and get back to you. Very magic bus. I still like The Magic Bus!
    @Kelly – Alright, who one the damn prize. It was a hoax, I know it. Like the snake biting his tale, going round and round in circles.

  9. Einstein loved the power of nap.

    And tell me, what is it about presenters who are asked to present to creative conferences but they stand up and give the most non creative, piss poor presentations ? what is that? Hello-o-o Read- audience of artists, film makers, chefs, musicians and dancers, arts admin and tourism kind of folk and they present stats and charts of documents, in droning voices…aughhhhhhhhhhhhh! Well, except sometimes a couple manage to totally rock. And there is a bar, and food…and jazz…but not til you listen….lots of doodles, trance like states in the presentations and snoring.

  10. Friar Says:

    Hmm….sounds like the shamans had some “medicinal help” from the plants in order to get into their meditative state. Maybe I could use some Magic Bus plants myself.

    I was hypotized once (as a student, I volunteered for a Psychology experiment for extra marks). I found the state of hypnonsis not unlike how I felt when I listened to the profs go “Blah blah blah”. Mabye there’s something to that.

    That’s suprising, I thought only us techno-weenie engineers and scientists gave dry boring crappy presentations. I would have expected better from artists and film makers.

    Just goes to show you mediocrity is universal. It knows no bounds.

  11. Karen Swim Says:

    HA! I could have used this technique a lot this week as I sat in meeting after endless meeting with people droning on ad nuis. I was philastical by week’s end. Luckily, I had Twitter so I could invalk mindless half conscious chatter in the background.

  12. Yeah, like where are the Big Chiefs…so they brought those out the next year an’ we all danced…I think all these mind numbing presentations should be flockulated .

  13. Friar Says:

    Oh, I love it! 🙂 Excellent use of “philastical”. You may be the first person in written history to ever use that in a sentence!

    I think you’d get a kick of this…Just search “How not to use Powerpoint” on YouTube.

  14. Kelly Says:


    Friar, that story is IN the book I am trying to give away at MCE! That is so funny you should mention it!

    Ellen, no hoax. I am totally disappointed that no one has won it yet. A couple of people have definitely clicked to the correct article in the last two days, yet ???

    I don’t get it.

    If you folks want to see presentations that will rock your world, go to http://www.ted.com/ The world’s best thinkers, putting on their presentations for the rest of the world’s best thinkers, and they’re given an 18-minute time limit. They don’t always stick to it, but they’ll never get a chance to bore you. There’s years’ of stuff in their archives, and you can see almost anyone you can think of, on almost any subject. One of my all time favorites was this one from Tony Robbins: http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/view/id/96 It’s really worth a view.

    TED’s addictive, though, I should warn you. 🙂

    Until later,


  15. Kelly Says:

    Hey, did you change your tagline?

  16. Friar Says:

    “Someone ought to set me straight?”.

    Yeah, that’s new.

    I think I might start changing it on a regular basis.

  17. Friar Says:


    Hey, thanks for the link. I’ll have to check out Ted.com. I’ll have to tell Brett about that one too.

    It would be a refreshing change to see people do GOOD presentations.

  18. Kelly Says:

    It’s good for now. Changing it on a regular basis would be fun, though. It made me do a double-take.

  19. Kelly Says:

    Excellent, awesome, and earth-shattering, if you find ones that really interest you. On everything from string theory to handwritten letters. Can’t fail to find something that grabs you.

    They have a newsletter or update or whatever-they-call-it, to email you with new stuff they post, or you can just go back and wander the site once in a while.

    They do a super-expensive three day thing in Monterrey, CA once a year. You hobnob with Al Gore (or whomever) if you go, but you only go if you are also somebody unbelievable. In my dream world I’d like to be enough of a muckety-muck to go to TED someday.

  20. Friar Says:

    I’d like to one day present at TED…!

  21. Ellen Wilson Says:

    @Kelly – This is your new marketing trick. I just know it. I am going nuts. It’s like trying not to pick a scab that itches. Just tell us. I can’t read everything twice!

    @Friar – Still…check out the harem. How can I get a harem?

  22. Friar Says:


    I dunno how to get a harem. Mabye you leave a trail of breadcrumbs or something…and people follow you home.

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