Updated: Mar 13, 2022
Stop Being Self-centered, Arrogant and Controlling - Conquer Internal Barriers (2)
One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego; the self is more distant than any star- Gilbert Keith Chesterton
The top news right now is war between Russia and Ukraine. Many people commented that they never thought Putin would take the unintelligent action because they though he is smart. However people underestimated his ego, narrow minded nationalism, controlling nature and chauvinism. Now most people believe he made a foolish decision that will lead to ruin himself and others.
Similarly many people have strong ego. They want to control everything and have authority to manipulate others, especially in a working environment. Have you ever suffered from being macro-managed by a selfish and controlling boss?
You are on the journey to grow to your fullest, Step 2, conquering oneself series. Today let’s talk about how to aware our egos and die to our egos so we stop being self-centered, arrogant and controlling and experience the power of let-it-go freedom and grow to our fullest.
In the book, Ego is the Enemy, by Ryan Holiday, it said, the only real failure is abandoning your principles. Killing what you love because you can’t bear to part from it is selfish and stupid. If your reputation can’t absorb a few blows, it wasn’t worth anything in the first place.
Ego is everywhere and it slips in our hearts and steals our joys; it blinds our eyes to see other’s strength and uniqueness; ego closes our ears to hear different voices and listen to wise suggestions; ego stops us taking accountability when things go wrong but pointing fingers to others, ego jails us in a dark rabbit hole shut off light. We see and experience egos everywhere in life.
Have you ever heard or said these languages: It’s not my fault, you did that!
Have you ever brew any pride in heart because of a little success or jealousy of others because they are better than you? Have you see people take credits of others or macro manage others for their goodness?
The ego not only ruins oneself but also others. When the ego gains more and more success for itself, it expands. The self becomes bigger but emptier. Because the communication is one way, it’s fated to lose balance someday. Once fame, control, and possessions fade, the ego is broken. Its peace, happiness, and security go away. Fear then comes in and crushes the self. The ego becomes consumed with bitterness and jealousy. Eventually, these injuries to the ego cause it to erupt from its core, sending misery to the world, as seen in up left figure. It ruins everything around it.
At work, ego negatively impacts people’s performance. Performance can be defined mathematically as a function of effort, IQ and ego shown below.
E(t) is the effort measured by the time that an employee puts on a task; mean(IQ) is the average IQ of all employees.
When employees with strong ego have an IQ below average but are workaholics, performance goes down. They not only perform poorly but also drag others down. This happens when they manage people. When they rise in rank, they acquire more power and bring more destruction. Because they can use their power to control everything, they allocate resources in the wrong way, promote the wrong people, and make bad decisions. They are the types of people who could lead the company to become bankrupt.
An ego acclaims, “I am the captain of my fate, I am the master of my soul.” The ego would never experience the unexpected splendid views on a journey that is charted and captained by others; the ego would never know the heart is held captive in littleness and bitterness. The famous writer, Gilbert Chesterton, once said, “Every man has forgotten who he is. One may understand the cosmos but never the EGO; the self is more distant than any star.”
We all face ego problem in one way or another, big or small. Even Apostle Paul had the struggle and he said, I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my flesh; for I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do. Instead, I keep on doing the evil I do not want to do. (Romans 7:18-19)
For in my inner being I delight in God’s law. But I see another law at work in my body, warring against the law of my mind and holding me captive to the law of sin that dwells within me. (Romans 7:22-23)
Osho said, “The ego is your enemy, not your friend. It is the ego that gives you wounds and hurts you. It is the ego that makes you violent, angry, jealous, competitive. It is the ego that is continuously comparing and feeling miserable.”
To grow to your fullest, you have to constantly check your heart and identify the destructive ego in you and bravely get it out. Otherwise, the little Satan constantly tells you lies about your identity – your authority and controlling power, and they steal your true identity. You are chained in your hard shell so you cannot launch the new life within you.
How can you get rid of your ego? Here I offer you four recipes that help you cure your ego:
1. Have a close relationship with God and let him guide you and remind you whenever your ego creeps up.
2. Be open-minded and listen to others. Switch roles to understand others’ perspectives.
3. Be constantly finding a quiet place to reflect on what is going on and examine your heart.
In the next post, I will discuss Four Steps to Build close relationship with God and help you know yourself better and conquer your ego so you can grow to your fullest!
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May you grow to your fullest!
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