Merriam-Webster defines the self as the combination of elements that make up an individual’s identity and uniqueness. However, people often limit their sense of self to just one defining aspect of their lives, such as their profession, achievements, race, ethnicity, culture, age, sexual orientation, religion, relationships, family, or possessions. When we describe a new acquaintance to someone else, we often lead with their job or accomplishments. I have to admit to myself that I often struggled with this tendency to attach my identity to a single aspect of my life. Before I want to talk about what ego does to us, first, I wouldn’t want to confuse anyone with how important it is for us to have our own identity. Perhaps our identity allows us to make decisions that will align with our values and have a better understanding of what we stand for. Enabling us to strive for ourselves and have a greater sense of purpose and direction. But when ego strikes, insanity comes in. It deliberately blunts our cognitive functions.
I’ve read through a book on ego. It talks about realism over passion. We need to define our intention or goal and collaborate on things with a sense of determination. Thus making it more meaningful.
As we strive for success and accomplish our goals, we often find ourselves under growing pressure to pretend that we know more than we actually do or that we already know everything. This is when our unconscious ego hits us, and we must not let it block our progress. After achieving many goals, I always remind myself that I have not yet graduated and that there is always more to learn. I resonate with Socrates’ wisdom, “I know that I know nothing.”
Often, we visualize ourselves as if we know everything or associate our identity with one aspect of our lives, such as profession, wealth, education, or other things. People often limit their sense of self to a single defining aspect. Even when we describe a new acquaintance to someone else, we often lead with their job or accomplishments.
What is Ego? By Richard Uzelac
Ego is our sense of self-importance, the idea that we are better than others and that our needs and desires are more important than theirs. When the ego takes control, we become consumed with our own desires and interests, often at the expense of those around us. This can lead to a sense of arrogance and selfishness, leaving little room for empathy or consideration of others. While it does not mean we should feel worthless or embrace feelings of being “worthless” or “insignificant,” doing so can lead us astray from our path or purpose and develop hopelessness.
Instead, I believe that the antidote to ego is to cultivate a sense of humility. Humility involves recognizing our strengths and weaknesses, acknowledging the contributions of others, and approaching life with a willingness to learn and an open mind.
The Ego is the Enemy of Success.
The ego is a powerful force that can have both positive and negative effects on our lives. While it can motivate us to achieve our goals and push ourselves to be better, it can also lead us down a dangerous path of complacency, entitlement, and overreach.
One of the most insidious aspects of ego is its ability to make us complacent. When we become overly confident in our abilities, we start to believe that we’ve reached the pinnacle of success and that further improvement is unnecessary. This can lead us to feel the need not to improve, learn, and grow. This is where ego cripples our growth, as it convinces us that we know it all and that we need not strive for more. The ego hinders our progress and acts as an impediment to our personal development.
In addition to complacency, ego can also make us feel entitled. When we start to believe that we are better than others, we may start to feel entitled to special treatment, recognition, or rewards. This entitlement can lead to a sense of entitlement that can make us difficult to work with or collaborate with. It can also breed resentment among our peers and colleagues, who may feel that we are not pulling our weight or contributing to the team in a meaningful way.
I found myself searching for a version of myself that may have existed in the past or one that could exist in the future. I felt adrift and unsure, but my realization of the impact of ego changed my perspective. Who I was before and who I am now are just a part of me. Nothing defines me. I’m not entitled to anything. I’m that ever-changing and evolving being. And that is I, Richard Uzelac.