I’ve been thinking about Ego.
Like most people, I’ve had my moments of Ego and always, in hindsight I’ve disliked myself in those times. That feeling of superiority, the whole “I know/have done/have experienced more than you” persona.
It’s usually not pretty. And so I tend to watch myself fairly closely that my Ego is not colouring my words and emotions. We’ve all seen and felt the energy of those people who believe themselves so much better/further along the path….. but then I also see other folk who project Ego all unknowingly. And I realise just how insidious it can be.
So why am I thinking about this now? Because something happened a couple of days ago and I wanted really badly to share it. So I did, with my friends, people I trust. These friends are awesome and would take what I said at face value and then celebrate with me.
But my busy brain got in on the picture and asked the question….was there an underlying Ego blast there? A lot of self-searching later and my answer is No. No ego, just excitement and a desire to share that experience for what it is.
But what about the possibility that people other than these friends see my talk as Ego? As a “look what happened to me, you’ve not experienced this!” superiority? That niggly voice can be very annoying!
This is something that has plagued my life; that has inadvertently led me into heaps of situations that have knocked the stuffing right out of me. That has undermined my confidence and self-esteem. The sharing and not feeling any form of ego, but still receiving the accusation; the empathic reaction to another’s problem and the resulting accusation of one-up-manship. The accusation of needing to be better than everyone else. These questions had, I thought, been laid to rest – until Ego popped up and said “You don’t get rid of me that easily!”
Ego isn’t all bad though. It is a part of us that is involved in our consciousness. The etymology of ‘ego’ is “the self; that which feels, acts, or thinks,” from Latin ego “I”. So your ego is, quite simply YOU.
Digging a little deeper: The “I” or self of any person (ego is Latin for “I”). In psychological terms, the ego is the part of the psyche that experiences the outside world and reacts to it, coming between the primitive drives of the id and the demands of the social environment, represented by the superego.
And so, back to Google to check out “superego”: The superego is the ethical component of the personality and provides the moral standards by which the ego operates. The superego’s criticisms, prohibitions, and inhibitions form a person’s conscience, and its positive aspirations and ideals represent one’s idealized self-image, or “ego ideal.”
And I realise that there is a whole world of wonder regarding Ego. It is not as simple as someone’s superiority, it is also not something that needs to be squashed right down and removed. That would be squashing what makes you YOU! The trick must be, as it is in many other aspects of life, in gaining a balance. Of being able to yell “look what I experienced” without making other people feel as if they are lacking.
Or is their feeling of lack, something they need to look more deeply into on a personal level?
Sheesh…… This became complicated!