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Ego – What exactly is ego?

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I notice that there is a lot of confusion about the word ‘ego’: what the ego is and how we can or ‘should’ deal with it. The ego is given many definitions and descriptions, but in general it is seen as something that you have to let go of. I have a slightly different take on that that I would like to share with you in this article.

What is the ego not?

As far as I’m concerned, the ego is not something to fight, condemn, or get rid of. The ego is part of who you are and as such it deserves to be recognized and accepted. The harder you fight something, the harder it fights back, and the harder it is to let go. It’s part of you and if you start fighting yourself, you’ll only get further from home in the end.

What is the ego though?

I see the ego as the thoughts emanating from a part of you that is not yet fully connected to your power and wholeness. They are the thoughts that come from fear, doubt, ‘I’m not good enough’ and patterns that you have developed during your life. Survival strategies, if you will.

An ego thought is often a thought that conveys the opposite of love and trust. The ego-thought reasons from lack, fear and doubt. It represents the part of you that is not yet connected to your strength and wholeness, to who you really are, to your love, heart energy and trust.

Now it is often said that we have to get rid of our ego in order to be spiritual or to develop further. But if a part of you is not in connection with your love and heart energy, do you help it by pushing it even further away from your love and heart energy? By condemning it and saying ‘I don’t want you’?

Dealing with thoughts from the ego

I sometimes see the ego thoughts in my mind as little devils in my path shouting things like: ‘you can’t do that’, ‘who do you think you are?!’ and ‘you are not good enough’. They look like they’re straight out of a comic book but they can get quite noisy

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ego_by_vimark-d306bsh

.For me it works to observe these thoughts without judgment. Listening to what they have to say and giving them the space to share everything they want to say. That is not to say that you believe everything they have to say (on the contrary) or that you use these thoughts as a basis for acting. But they are allowed to be there and precisely by giving them space and seeing what is actually behind them, they lose their power and influence on you.

Also remember that all these thoughts and patterns come from somewhere. You developed them for a reason. And even though now may be the time to let go, that doesn’t mean those thoughts and patterns are necessarily bad or wrong.

Sometimes it helps to connect with your inner child where your inner child represents the vulnerable, insecure part of you and you as an adult are the understanding parent. You can then listen to what that part of you needs (often that is simply recognition, acceptance and love!) and then give that to yourself, your inner child and to all the thoughts and feelings that are there.

Fighting the ego or labeling it as ‘bad’ makes little sense to me. If you push or judge a part of yourself, you only take yourself further away from your own wholeness. But if you can embrace all parts of yourself, you come deeper into your own wholeness and your trust, heart energy and love get a firmer foundation to build on.

Do you have a different view of the ego that doesn’t match what I’m writing here? Feel free to let go of what you read here. This article is intended to give you a different perspective if that suits you. I assume that different truths can co-exist (even if they seem to contradict each other). Take what works for you.

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