Egos… we all have one. Ego loves the safety of familiarity, even if it’s not in our best interests. It pushes us to stick with what feels safe and comfortable and it can be the monkey on our back. The trick is learning to control your ego, otherwise, it will control you and keep you stuck where you don’t belong.
Control Your Ego – The Danger Of Deflated Egos
A common way this plays out is in the ego we attach to our jobs; whatever we do for work. Ask someone who has been made redundant how it made them feel and they will most likely relay the loss of identity, the shame, the instant loss of purpose and direction, and differing forms of a loss of confidence and self-worth. The effects are felt so strongly they can be crippling.
Why Does Redundancy Hurt Our Ego So Much?
Quite simply it’s because we think we are what we do. Our identity and worth are directly tied to what we do for a day job. Society aids this in many cases by giving greater respect to certain careers (doctors, lawyers, pilots) applying a view of occupational prestige, historically based on which professions were seen to add more value to society. Just by studying in a particular field and working in certain professions, a person could obtain a higher status almost instantly.
So How is This a Problem?
This becomes an issue when a person is unhappy in what they do and want to make a change to their career Almost ironically, this is quite common in people who go into the previously mentioned high-status jobs.
People generally know within themselves for quite a period of time that they are unhappy in their work, and they feel unfulfilled, constantly frustrated, and running at a high level of stress. But our out of control ego tells us we should stay. After all, it’s what people expect, it’s ‘who you are’ so how can you possibly not be that anymore? You think you will lose the respect of others, and giving up your level of income will mean more judgement – your spouse will judge you, your family, your neighbours, and your accountant will all judge you.
It’s about now that you will probably realise your self-confidence is based largely on the success you’ve had in your career.
I’ve been through this.
I was really good at what I did and I was sought after and paid really well. But I knew for years that what I was doing wasn’t fulfilling me. I knew I’d only gone into it because it was expected of me to do a respectable uni degree and to get a respectable job in that field. And so I did, and I gave it my all for a long time while I lived in denial.
That was up until the day that I finally ran out of excuses and took the leap. And guess what?! I did lose the respect of some people around me; I did lose a decent sum of money, and it turned out the new job didn’t fulfil me either! My ‘so called’ confidence took a hit, I felt displaced and lost, and my marriage fell apart.
Sounds like an epic fail then, yeah?
Well amazingly, NO!
That experience has changed who I am for the better. It almost broke me but it has also made me. I went back to my foundations and started building from a solid base. I discovered what true self-worth looks like, and none of it was tied to my career. I figured out what I truly want in life, who I want to give my time and energy to, and most importantly worked out how I can add value to the world and feel good about it.
And when you build this kind of solid foundation, any aspect of your life can change and you know you’ll be equipped to handle it. The ego no longer rules and it starts to tell you a different story. My ego now tells me when I deserve better and shouldn’t settle. Now that’s freedom.
Learn How To Control Your Ego
Do you think your ego has led you down the garden path? Book in a Free Discovery Call to learn how to manage hits to your ego and come out stronger on the other side.