Most of us think of ego in terms of ‘bragging’ or saying ‘I’ a lot, which is true from a psychological perspective. From the spiritual perspective, ego is considered the ‘shadow self’ the dark part of us. This is the part that colors our actions.
The shadow self (ego based) is completely different from our higher self (soul based). It’s the part of us that actually keeps us remaining in the same place, while our higher self keeps us moving forward in life. Ego = fear, Soul =love.
We operate from two basic places; 1- from our ego OR 2- from our soul. Soul evolution happens when your fear-based reality embraces and incorporates your love-based reality. Surrendering to your soul means you’re allowing the ego to be useful to you, but not dominant.
This is why religions have prayers and meditation; to soften the ego. The soul can then move into tangible daily experiences. That is a soul-based life versus an egocentric based life. You can feel when you’re working from the soul level, folks call it being in the ‘zone’. It’s that place of feeling in total alignment.
The ego is still useful and helpful, and is needed to participate in the world, but from a place of it being an assistant to love. We achieve this by accepting and integrating that part of our self that is acting out, and giving it permission to exist instead of berating it & judging it. We befriend that part of us.
When ego is being used healthily this is what it looks like: the soul is the driver and the ego navigates.
Here are 5 ways to know you’re operating from your ego:
- You are playing victim or martyr.
- You are being competitive and not inclusive.
- You are analytical & judgmental.
- You are coming from a place of scarcity instead of abundance.
- You are living in fear and full of doubt.
These experiences will never go away, we need to catch ourselves when we’re having them, embrace them with new perspective, and love ourselves through that temporary space, and get ourselves OUT. We stop our lives from moving forward, otherwise.