Ever wonder why some people become so bitter over seemingly nothing? Or why others just walk out of your life for almost no reason?
Ever wonder why some of the wars that have been fought over the last thousand years, some of the most brutal out there, even started? The stains on history, unfortunately, which should’ve never even started? The countless number of lives that were ruined and cut short?
Ever wonder about the sheer number of crimes which have occurred, both violent and otherwise, ruining millions of people’s lives in the process?
Whether it’s friendships at stake, wars being declared, or crimes being committed, they have the same starting source. Something which can be attributed to the one thing we have a really, really hard time letting go of:
What Is Your Ego?
That three letter word is the equivalent of the devil on your shoulder you always read about; it’s the alternate version of “you” which harbors all your insecurities, fears, hatred, and judgements.
It’s the wrong to your right; the antagonist to your protagonist. It’s the dark to your light.
The ego, or more specifically your ego (since we all have one), is the immature, kicking, crying, and screaming baby.
We all have it, and it’s not really going anywhere; the best we can do is try to suppress it. To dissolve the ego has been the focal point in many religions’ attainment, especially in Eastern philosophy. To put the ego aside; the lucky few are able to achieve such a feat.
Honestly, striving for such a feat is asinine. It requires living a life which most of us aren’t willing to work towards.
So our next best option is to help ourselves realize when the ego acts up, and work to tone it down. We can take steps to help lessen it, I promise, but it takes an insane amount of effort and constant self-awareness to recognize what triggers it.
The Ego Is Everywhere
It’s pervasive. Oh yeah, it’s pervasive all right:
- It’s the reason you take things so personally all the time.
- It’s the reason you’re such a wreck after a breakup.
- It’s the reason you get pissed off in the car when someone cuts you off or tries to squeeze in.
- It’s the reason we don’t like to admit a mistake or say we’re wrong, and it’s the reason we think we’re always right.
- It’s the reason we judge people so harshly.
- It’s the reason we don’t like rejection or failure.
And the list goes on and on and on….and on.
Every day, we face situations where we have multiple ways to react. And yet for a large percentage of them, we let our ego do the talking. And when things go wrong, we immediately think how unlucky we are, and how it’s other people’s fault. The victim mentality is pervasive, and many people use it often. Yet again, the victim mentality is rooted in the ego.
Admission Isn’t Weakness
I’m the first to admit I still hate when I’m wrong. I hate being rejected. I hate failure to a point I avoid it when I can. I fear things because of how it’ll make me feel. These feelings won’t ever go away, on some level, if I had to guess. But I’m also the first to admit when my ego acts out. In doing enough self-work and meditation, I can pinpoint the exact moments where it happens.
I can also see why I’m not making certain moves because of an overwhelming sense of fear. Does it make it easier to then do it? What if just realizing something helped you get over it? Sorry, doesn’t work that way unfortunately. I’ll be damned, it’s impossible to turn off this lovely devil on my shoulder.
I’m sure you feel pretty similar. Sometimes we shock ourselves at the vitriol we’re capable of spreading.
But the first step in any process of atonement or “fixing” is admitting your mistakes.
I’ve taken strides to admit my shortcomings.
And I hope you do, too.