Just what is “Ego”?
Ego is an exaggerated sense of one’s own importance. People who have ego are conceited and often feel and behave as if they are better than others. Ego is not to be confused with confidence and self-esteem. Confidence is courage in your ability to do and is not necessarily exaggerated.
Self-esteem is the sense of being worthy, but just like confidence, it is not exaggerated. Ego is a form of extremism that results in broken hearts, little or no compassion for others, shattered relationships, irrationality and generally, leaves a person unhappy.
How to Get Rid of Your Ego, how ego ruins your life
Ego is a three letter word that can easily bring you down even from great heights. Below are some of the ways that having a personal ego can negatively impact your life and relationships.
1. It stops you from growing
To grow in wisdom you must know the extent of your own ignorance. However, Ego makes you overconfident in your abilities and renders growth impossible. It is very difficult to grow professionally and spiritually if you never listen to other people’s advice or consider other people’s point of view.
2. Ego breeds irrationality
When the only thing on your mind is winning regardless of the costs involved, or proving other people wrong, then you begin to act in irrational ways. Proving that you are right becomes your new found obsession. You throw away the great guidance of logic and end up doing things that you will almost certainly regret afterward.
3. Ego makes great relationships impossible.
This is one of the most obvious, and perhaps the greatest shortcoming of egotistic people. As you can tell, it is actually very difficult to get along with someone who is always trying to prove he/she is right or is constantly criticizing others because what they are doing are not up to his/her “standards”
4. Ego kills your happiness
Being egotistic drives people away from you, including those who care. This creates a sense of emptiness in the individual harboring such Ego and they end up unhappy with their lives. Being unhappy affects everything you do, especially your productivity at work.
5. It breeds negativity in the workplace
People are by nature defensive. If you do not believe this try punching or slapping someone and see what happens. If you expect that they will smile at you and give you the proverbial “you can slap me on the other side too” then you are in for a rude shock. Chances are that people will defend themselves once they are attacked.
The same applies to criticizing others and pointing out your superiority. All that this does is create ego wars, where you and your fellow workers become trivial and start analyzing and criticizing each other’s shortcomings rather than helping each other. Such ego battles come at the expense of the organization’s productivity because little time is left to work on the important things.
Tips to help you manage your ego
If you find yourself to have developed certain egotistical tendencies that make your life miserable, you need not lament and curse the gods for your wretched existence. Instead, follow the following tips and you will slowly but surely overcome your ego.
1. Develop empathy
The best way to stop seeing things “your way” is to look at them from other people’s point of view. This is known as empathy, and basically, involves putting oneself in another person’s shoes, so to speak. This will open your eyes to the fact that you may be wrong and the other person may be right.
2. Strive to be a servant-leader
It has been said that the greatest destiny of the individual is to serve rather than to lead, and there is some truth to this. When you truly begin to serve others, your motivation becomes bigger than yourself and you begin to see the big picture. When you become a servant-leader, the world conspires in your favor resulting in greater harmony in your relationships and increased productivity in your work.
3. Be thankful
Learn to be thankful and focus on the things you love. Realize that there is intrinsic beauty in everything and everyone. In addition, learn to say thank you when someone helps you and congratulate them when they do a good job.
As has been mentioned above, ego is a very dangerous self-destruction weapon. It can result in the lack of harmony and retard spiritual growth. However, this is not to say that all hope is lost for egotistic people. By following the simple tips laid out above, people who dwell in the vanity and illusion brought about by ego may well be redeemed.