What is the ego?
‘Ego’ is the voice in our head that constantly makes judgements about us and our surroundings. It’s not a negative thing, after all, we have an ego for a reason. We need it in order to make some sort of sense of the world. However, many people struggle with it when that voice begins to sabotage our confidence, or even debilitates our day to day functioning.
When we begin the journey of becoming aware of the ego, we will often notice how much it puts us down, criticises, questions our worth and doubts our abilities.
It’s easy to understand that this unkind voice isn’t actually true and doesn’t serve us. We know there is a tender, loving, soothing voice tucked away inside. Somewhere.
Despite this, all we can hear is the nattering away of its critical, draining monologues that are far from necessary or useful.
I know what it is, but I can still hear it!
At this point, what a lot of us will begin to do is to then further judge and attack ourselves for actually having this voice. We’ll think:
“Hey, I’m on this journey towards loving myself, but I can’t even get rid of my ego. I must be doing it wrong!”
Frustration is a very common response because it’s the first time we will actually notice how much of a bully this little voice in our heads is. Quite frankly, becoming conscious of the ego is not a pleasant experience.
Nevertheless, if we get into the habit of reacting with this resistance every time we hear it, and try to smooth it over with gritted teeth, reciting a few “I am an infinite well of love” affirmations before we go to sleep… it’ll only get louder and louder.
We can’t silence the ego, we can only accept it
Today, I invite you to change your approach. Instead of feeling frustrated that it’s still happening, just let it be there. Give it the space to chatter on about whatever it wants. Instead of judging yourself for having one, just release your preference and opinions about its presence.
The voice of the ego is completely normal. A big misconception is that we have the ability to just turn down its invisible volume dial at will. Truth is, if this voice isn’t really us, how can we be the one to silence it?
Trying to demand the ego to be quiet, or to be nicer, is like yelling at a small child who is crying. If it gets yelled at, it’ll simply get louder and louder. A more compassionate way of viewing the ego, is seeing it as the echo of our inner child.
All it is doing, is trying to point to what we still need to spend time healing and feeling inside ourselves. Yet the mistake we all make, is to get wound up because it’s talking to us in the first place. All we do then, is start having an inner debate about its existence and prolong the uncomfortable experience.
We are not our ego, we are the silent one that watches
If we do not want to live with this voice any longer, all we can do is stay as the watchful observer without any extra judgement or resistance on top of the load.
If we just let it be, the voice will naturally begin to soften. It won’t feel the need to constantly talk and we can finally enjoy some peace and quiet. When it does talk, it’s comments will transform into something much kinder, loving and truthful.
Almost everyone goes through this stage on the journey towards loving themselves. Yes, it can feel relentless at times. It’s a process. We really can’t force how long it takes to change the words the ego spits out at us.
All we can do is recognise that we are not the ego itself. We are the silent one that watches and listens.
If we love our ego it will love us back
Our ego doesn’t owe us kindness. It is simply a happening that none of us truly understand. Yet when we are kind, patient and accepting towards the ego, it’ll slowly earn our trust.
In its own time, but inevitably so; it will turn around and start being kind, patient and accepting towards us, too.