Too much ego is a pervasive, worldwide problem and one that is holding us back. In my own experiences, I have witnessed (and experienced) how our ego holds us back from collective growth.
When I say ego, I am not talking about Freud’s balance between the Id and the Superego. I am not referring to self-confidence or self-esteem, and I am certainly not arguing against positive feedback and praise.
When I say ego, I am talking about egotism. I am talking about the right/wrong dilemma that is so prevalent today. I am referring to attachment and defensiveness. And, I am referring to the fixed mindset (versus the growth mindset) that keeps us tied tied to our own self-importance.
In this post, I am arguing for a collective letting go of ego. Here are five reasons why we need to let go of ego and embrace the discomfort of real growth.
- Our ego serves no one, not even ourselves. When we get attached to an idea, that is our ego refusing to let us grow. When we get defensive, that is our ego protecting us against vulnerability and discomfort. But vulnerability and discomfort equal growth. If we do not practice being uncomfortable, we will never reach our highest potential.
- Our ego is detrimental to our goals. Our ego puts up barriers and tells us that we are right. Maybe we are, but how does being right serve the goal? What would be more helpful in moving the situation forward in a positive direction?
- Our ego keeps us attached to mediocrity. Our ego tells us that we are great, wonderful, right…What it doesn’t tell us is that we are also fearful and timid. Perhaps of being wrong? Rather than being focused on being right, commit to learning more, being better, and serving the greater good.
- Our ego equals pride. Pride is one of the seven deadly sins. Need I say more.
- Our ego causes fights. Our ego eggs us on, tells us that we are right and revels in conflict. It feeds our anger and makes us feel righteous and indignant. But, does righteous indignation actually feel good?
If we are truly in the business of learning and growth, we must be learners ourselves. That means allowing ourselves to be wrong and “inexpert” at some things. As humans, it means being vulnerable.
Serving our own egos does no one any good, not even ourselves. So, I am calling for a collective letting go of ego(tism), so that we can all grow, continue to improve, and learn more!