What is Ego?
Ekhart Tolle says “identification with thoughts is ego”. This means 'you derive your sense of self from the content and activity of the mind.’
I have also learned that ego comes from the prefrontal cortex of the human brain. This is the part of the brain that is responsible for our sense of self, our sense of time and our decision making.
The ego provides us with confidence and a gives us a feeling of importance. It gives us a sense of what we believe is real.
As far as i understand, the ego plays a significant role in what makes us human.
However, where there is light, there must also be darkness. If the ego gives us our importance, it also gives us self doubt. If it gives us confidence, it can also give us fear and shame. If the ego gives us time keeping, it can give us anxiety. If it tells us what is real, it can also give us illusion.
As a new mom, i am learning a whole new way of being. I am essentially re-identifying myself as a human, a woman, even as a movement and yoga teacher. As it goes, during almost any transition, doubt and fear can present themselves quite strongly. At times my ego takes over and prevents me from flowing into my new role with ease. I recently noticed i was starting many sentences with "i should/shouldn’t”. I should go for a jog. I shouldn't eat that cookie. I should be more patient. I should know how to do this. Can you feel the energy behind those sentences? This is ego: shame, doubt, victim, poor me. UGH.
I have been experimenting lately with changing the way i talk to myself. Instead of starting sentences with 'i should/n't', i ask myself 'what would feel good?'. It would feel good if i ate an apple. It would feel so good if i rested on the couch and watched TV. It would feel great to go for a long walk. It would feel wonderful to sit still for a few minutes. It would feel delightful to eat an ice cream. It would feel nice to ask my mother for guidance. Can you feel the difference? SO MUCH BETTER.
What i have essentially been doing is taking myself out of the ego way of thinking and tapping into my wise heart space and my intelligent sensing body. When i am guided by those places instead of the ego, i feel lighter. I can flow effortlessly. I am able to be a better mother, partner, daughter, teacher and friend. I drop the guilt and the shame and begin to move (or not move!) from my higher self.
What is Ego?